Spring Sports Preview: Girls Lacrosse
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Head Coach: Melissa Velez (7th season)
Last Year’s Record: 9-9
Key Returnees: Hannah Linton (Jr., G), Dominique Perini (Jr., Mid), Elisabeth Ralph (Jr., Mid), Jenny LaRocca (Jr., Mid), Maddy Carullo (Jr., Att).
Key Losses: Ana Beyer (Mid), Katie Gallagher (Mid)
Key Newcomers: Nicole Arden (Jr., Def), Rebecca Fontana (Jr., Def), Jamie Bader (Jr., Def), Maddy Rosenthal (Fres, Att), Emily Sinsi (Jr., Att),
Strengths of the Team: The returning core. PV scored 10.8 goals per game last season and made the North Jersey Group 3 tournament last season, and anchored by many of the same returning players, figures to be a major force in its league. Velez spoke highly of the returners and knows they’ll be key to a successful season. “Hannah Linton is amazing. She is fun to watch. Elisabeth Ralph and Jenny LaRocca work really, really well together. Maddy Carullo has a great shot. Dominque does a lot in the midfield,” Velez said.
Area that needs improvement: Starting games strong. The Indians have started games slowly but then picked things up after the half. Velez acknowledged that starting off strong is equally as important, if not more so. “We have always struggled coming out from the beginning of the game, playing as good as we do from halftime on. If their mindset changed, and we can start off great, than we will finish greater.”
Outlook: Anchored by a Division 1 commit in Ralph, the Indians will look to her to be a catalyst on both sides of the ball. Last season PV was knocked out by Mount Olive in the first round of the North Jersey Group 3 tournament, but with a lot of last year’s core returning, the Indians will again look to be competitive. The Indians also boasted a prolific offense last season, scoring 10.8 goals per game and will need to come close to that clip to once again stay competitive.
Coach’s Comment: “We should be better this year than last year. We kind of lost some really close ones that we shouldn’t have lost, so I think this team is, as a group, a little bit stronger than last year,” Velez said.