Girls lacrosse improves team environment


Emilia Weinrobe

Junior and captain Mia Otoski defends the ball to cause a turnover against North Atlanta

Archer Streelman

After going 6-7 in the regular season, and falling to The Walker School in the first round of playoffs, 17-2, the girls lacrosse team plans to use this season to rebuild and grow.

The team’s loss of 4 key players to graduation , Sophie Ille, Shawn Gillespy, Katie Dwyer, and Vassar Lacrosse commit Zola Sullivan left the team looking to fill several gaps.

“I feel like there’s a lot of room for improvement,” junior captain Mia Otoski said. “The four seniors that graduated were the backbone to our team. They were very crucial and we are going to have to work around their loss.”

The team will rely on their strong relationships and chemistry to improve on the field.

“The strongest part of the team is definitely the connections we all have,” Otoski said. “I think that while everyone has their own friends and friend groups, we are all becoming really really good friends. This obviously helps on the field with communication and team chemistry.”

The Knights practice five times a week and have games spread throughout the spring semester. The captains hope the team stays dedicated and works on lacrosse outside of school practice.

“We can improve on commitment to the team and communicating because the season is long,” senior captain Emmy Friedman said. “We need to work on our skills, like catching and throwing. We need to make sure that we are practicing outside of practice and by ourselves. Everyone needs to improve their understanding mindsets and their lacrosse IQ’s.”

Some players play year round on club teams and train on the weekends at sport specific gyms. Sophomore Ryan Carter is one of those players.

“I have been going to this place called ‘Fast Tad’,” Carter said. “It’s a private lacrosse clinic. I have also been making sure I’ve been exercising to prepare for the season.”

Being in-school increased the number of players to try out and resulted in a larger roster. ,

“We have some new freshmen and some seniors that came back from not playing last year,” Otoski said. “I think that they are a nice addition to the team. Not only do we need skill but we need commitment, confidence, friendship, all those types of things.”

With the addition of a new community coach, a volunteer living in the neighborhood, Dan Carter, who is also Carter’s dad, the team has added new leadership.

“I think that he has a really good lacrosse IQ so he is really helping attack with what they need to do, leading plans and drills. He is especially helpful when people dont understand it, he is really good at explaining,” Freidman said.

The teams first game is Feb. 24 against East Paulding. The team hopes that this game will welcome in a successful and enjoyable few months of lacrosse this year.

“We should focus this year on having fun,” Otoski said. “Often that means that we are really bad and we are going to lose, but I think in past years we were so caught up with only trying to win. It’s just not healthy so I think we should go into the season with a mindset of just having fun.”