Crescenta Valley expected a physical match and got just that from the beginning, even as the match remained tied until midway through the second quarter.
"They were probably more physical than most teams we've played before," Crescenta Valley utility Kim Fraisse said.
Added teammate Adrienne Ingalla: "It was brutal. I got beat up a couple of times."
The beating began to translate to the scoreboard when Temescal Canyon took its biggest lead of the game, 7-2, early in the third quarter.
"I think they were just determined to get back in the game and that's been the trademark of this team," Falcons Coach Pete Loporchio said.
And it was Fraisse, the school's single-season scoring record-holder, who has become the face of the program over the last couple of years, leading the charge back when it looked like the Falcons were about to take one on the chin.
"We just thought about it during halftime and we were like, we have to come back, and go as hard as we can and not give up," said Fraisse, who finished with six goals. "We did our best and coming back up that much was very good for us."
After scoring on a man-advantage to bring Crescenta Valley back within four, Fraisse drew an ejection and a five-meter shot with 3:12 left in the third. She was blocked by Titans goalie Lina Medeiros, who had an excellent game with nine saves, but Fraisse relentlessly pursued the rebound, outhustling the pair of Titans that flanked her at the five-meter mark to secure the ball and draw another ejection and five-meter in the process.
She buried that one to give the Falcons their first shot of momentum of the second half.
"I think, in this game, she established herself as one of the best players in this division," Loporchio said.