The experience Stillwater gained from its previous two lacrose state tournament appearances in 2011 and 2012 was evident from the outset Tuesday against inexperienced Elk River/Zimmerman.
The Ponies (15-2) scored 10 consecutive goals in the first half, and cruised into the semifinals with a 17-8 victory over Elk River/Zimmerman in the first quarterfinal game the girls’ lacrosse state tournament at Chanhassen High School. The overwhelmed Elks (13-4) were making their first state tournament trip.
Junior Katherine Sheely and sophomore Carter Sanderson each had a hat trick in the first half as the Ponies built a 13-2 lead. Sanderson finished with five goals and Sheely had four.
Stillwater will face the Armstrong-Blake winner on Thursday. Defending state champion Blake beat the Ponies 17-10 in the semifinals a year ago.