Benilde-St. Margaret's boys lacrosse coach Giuseppe Palermo shot a knowing grin as he discussed the pregame speech heading into Saturday's state tournament championship game.

"I'll say this: I didn't have to say a whole lot," Palermo said. "The seniors did it."

Heck, even their words weren't needed. When Minnesota State High School League officials moved the start time from 6 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. — hoping to avoid disruptive severe weather — they unknowingly set players and fans up for persistent rain.

Frog weather — a good omen for the Red Knights.

The program's ethos this spring, the FROGS acronym stands for "Forward, Response, One Family, Good, Selflessness." Those ingredients led to an 18-10 victory against defending state champion Lakeville North and brought the Red Knights a third state title in four seasons.

A year ago, Benilde-St. Margaret's croaked in the state tournament, squandering a 17-0 record in a semifinal loss to Prior Lake. This time, senior Gus Bell got the Red Knights (18-1) started fast with a hat trick in the first quarter.

Fellow BSM senior Sky Rold kept the pressure on the Panthers (14-5) with a pair of second-half goals.

"Those two guys are a special pair," Palermo said. "I've been coaching this game a long time, and I don't think I've ever had two guys on one team who are leaders like them, who are ballers like them. They are unbelievable young men."

With the Red Knights' senior Division I-committed players setting the pace, less-heralded but effective players Dylan Parker and Dylan Popehn — whom Palermo called "D-squared" — netted timely goals to keep doubt in the Panthers' heads.

Lakeville North coach Matt Stonestrom acknowledged, "I don't know if we ever got any traction. Sometimes we struggled with teams that are big and physical with us. Gus and Sky were physical dodgers."

Benilde-St. Margaret's also won 9-8 on May 2 at Lakeville North.

Breaking open the rematch, Stonestrom said, owed to the Red Knights "playing cohesive ball, and we were a step or two late on just about everything."

Said Palermo: "I'm just so proud of this group. Offense specifically, we've been trying to get them to play four quarters all season long. We've been trying to get all six of them working together all season long. And today they did that. We kept the main thing the main thing and played our best ball at the end of the year."