Head Coach Kate Dolan has been an impactful coach of Andover Girls Lacrosse since 1988. For the past two decades, Coach Dolan has lead the girls to strong and valuable seasons, and has coached numerous players that have gone on to play collegiate lacrosse.
Coach Dolan’s athletic background has lead her to become a great coach. With her extensive background in sports she brings knowledge, experience, and passion to her players. Despite not playing lacrosse in high school, Coach Dolan was able to play at a collegiate level due to her athleticism and natural skill. She played field hockey and lacrosse at the University of New Hampshire (UNH). In her time playing collegiate lacrosse, her team won the NCAA Division-I Girls Lacrosse Championship for UNH.
Last year, the team finished the season with a record of 6-8. This year, Coach Dolan says that she hopes that the team will have a more successful season. Andover started out strong with a 11-10 overtime win against Andover High School in a scrimmage this past Wednesday.
Regarding the scrimmage, Coach Dolan wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “Wednesday’s scrimmage gave us a chance to play together as a team for the first time this spring, and while it was far from perfect it gave us a chance to see the team’s potential. Our offense had nine assisted goals (out of 11), which is pretty incredible and shows the team’s unselfishness, vision and teamwork. Defensively, both our goalies played well and the defense came up with key stops down the stretch by improving their helping defense, which was great to see happen with the game. Overall, it was positive and encouraging and we hope to keep improving in our possession of the ball, our breakouts and our shooting percentage.”
According to players on the team, Coach Dolan emphasizes learning the basics of the sport, because she believes that if players have the basics down, they can build upon their skills.
Co-Captain Jordy Fenton ’17 said, “Kate always wants us to know the basics of what we’re doing so that we can build form there. Whether it’s in drills or chalk talks she makes sure we understand that the simple things help of to succeed.”
Coach Dolan is also a firm believer in an intense work ethic and she believes players are at their best when they are open to coaching, according to players.
Fenton said, “She tries to get across to us that if you work your hardest at what you’re doing and have an open mind that you can be the best player and best team possible. She wants us to really love playing lacrosse and really put in the effort and time in because she knows that makes the most successful teams.”
Coach Dolan also stresses the importance of playing together as a team and that it is not about any individual player. She looks out of for the team, both on and off the field, and makes it her priority to help everyone, according to players on the team.
Annie Lord ’19 said, “I think that something that anyone who has had Kate as a coach knows, is that she sends us very motivational e-mails, whether that be after a particularly good practice or after a win or a loss and in these e-mails she will include little pictures and quotes. I feel like a lot of the time the message she is getting across is that it is really about teamwork and that we are in it as a team and in it together. It is also that a loss isn’t just one person’s loss and a win isn’t just one person’s win, but it is something that we all contribute to. In practices she focuses on how you can use your teammates on and off the field. For me personally she has been very supportive, she has focused on me and the other goalie which is really great.”
Co-Captain Beth Krikorian ’17 said, “Kate prioritizes the team as a whole rather than the individual. This definitely affects our team atmosphere and chemistry because we are all for each other and are unselfish. In addition, she does not only care about the sport, but also every girl on the team and our well-being. By doing so, she extends herself off the field as well as on on the field so that we are able to perform to the best of our ability in every way. She genuinely cares about every individual as well as the team as a unit. Her passion and support makes us want to be our best.”
Co-Captain Courtney Masotti ’17 added, “Kate really cares about having the team work together cohesively. Both on and off the field she really stresses the team aspect and encourages us to work hard with one another physically and mentally. It’s really clear to us that she cares about this team because of the time and dedication that she has to us during and outside of the season.”
Andover hopes to have a successful season, as this is the last lacrosse season under the guidance of both Coach Dolan as well as Assistant Coach Martha Fenton ’83.