Girls lacrosse: youth movement

Peter Barbato, Staff Writer

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Despite a dramatic loss in number of seniors, girl’s lacrosse is looking to utilize their youth to turn what could easily be a “rebuilding” year into one of contention.

“The seniors last year had been playing together for a long time, so it was easier for the new players to adjust to their style of playing,” senior captain Grace Tabet explained. “This year, everyone is adjusting and adapting to each other, which is different.”

Going from 10 seniors last season to now only three, the team has had to quickly shift  from a tight-knit, senior led team to one that now heavily depends on all four grade levels.

“I think we all know we need to put in extra work to make sure we have as good a team connection as the seniors did last year,” Tabet said. “We all come to every practice ready to get better not just individually but as a team as well.”

Having to adjust style of play is always an issue that surfaces when a team undergoes a seismic shift like the one the team finds themselves in now.

“I think [the changed team dynamic] will make things really hard for us this year,” junior Julia English said. “Everyone on our team has a specific skill set that they are bringing to the table, but it’s a lot different from last year.”

The team had three all-conference seniors last year, including Marnie O’Malley, who committed to Marquette University for lacrosse, and Sarah Skidmore, who committed to Williams College.

“The roster is definitely a lot different with only three seniors and being majority underclassmen,sophomore Josie Lambert said. “However, the advantage of this is that we are all still growing as players, and we have so much more time to get better as a team.”

This wave of underclassmen is comprised of eight sophomores, six of whom made varsity last season, and three freshmen. A common issue younger teams like this may run into is a lack of maturity, stemming from a lack of experience. However, this has been just the opposite for the Kits.

“Not only are our younger girls amazing athletes and lacrosse players, but they are also some of the most hardworking people I know,” Tabet explained. “They are always ready to get better, and keep pushing themselves as well as the team to excel higher and higher, which only benefits the team greater.”

Lambert praises the team’s skillful offense, and credits defenders for stepping up this year after losing a lot of starters in the senior wave.

“Our team is definitely very strong at attack, we have a lot of strong shooters and dodgers on our team,” she said. “We lost a lot of our defenders last year, so returners have been stepping up as well as new players to fill the role.”

The Kits’ next game will be at Highland Park on April 3, at 4:45 p.m.