State girls championship

No. 1-seeded Lakeville South (18-0) vs. No. 2-seeded Prior Lake (17-1)

2:30 p.m. Saturday, Eden Prairie High School

Why Prior Lake will win: After missing the state tournament last year, the 2019 and 2021 state champions "know what we're fighting for," said junior Abby Grove, who scored the game winner in the Lakers' 11-10 overtime semifinal win against Benilde-St. Margaret's. With close wins over strong programs like Eden Prairie and Stillwater, the Lakers have proved they can stay composed, retake momentum and ride out what head coach Heather Pierson called a "game of waves."

Why Lakeville South will win: Lakeville South has dominated its undefeated season, even after adding opponents like Edina and East Ridge to its spring schedule. Only three games have been decided by less than 10 goals, including Thursday's 17-8 semifinal win over Stillwater. Senior midfielder Tori Tschida, the Star Tribune's All-Metro Player of the Year, has recorded 43 goals and 33 assists for the Cougars and is part of a strong midfield that includes fellow captains and seniors Sivanna O'Brien and Katie Grubbs.

Key to watch: Pierson commended the Lakers' defensive performance against Benilde-St. Margaret's on Thursday, especially in limiting BSM in 1-on-1 matchups. But Lakeville South has a wide array of attacking options, with five different players reaching the 30-goal mark this season. The Lakers will have to neutralize one option, and the next, then the next, if they want to hold Lakeville South's attack at bay.

Did you know? Lakeville South won 10-3 against Prior Lake on April 23. Prior Lake's last state title in 2021 was a win over Lakeville South.

State boys championship

No. 3-seeded Lakeville North (14-4) vs. No. 1 Benilde-St. Margaret's (17-1)

2:30 p.m. Saturday, Chaska High School

Why Lakeville North will win: Junior Carson Piscitiello called the playoffs a rebirth. "We started attacking practices with intensity and came at every game with fresh optimism." Part of the postseason spark included the return of junior midfielder Lane Johnson from injury. "We are now a full team," Piscitiello said.

Why Benilde-St. Margaret's will win: The Red Knights got a first-quarter goal in their semifinal from senior Dylan Parker with four seconds remaining. Eden Prairie coach Ryan Ward called it a killer. Red Knights coach Giuseppe Palermo considered the play an example for how far BSM has come this spring. "We have been trying to get the boys to have that self-control and discipline all year to get into a huddle, talk through a play and go execute what we talked about. I saw that a few times today."

Key to watch: Lacrosse is a game of runs and both teams benefited from going on heaters in the semifinals. North built a 10-1 lead by halftime. Meanwhile, BSM broke open a 2-2 first quarter tie with an 6-1 surge though the third quarter.

Did you know? Benilde-St. Margaret's won 9-8 on May 2 at Lakeville North.