Over Spring Vacation, Andover Girls Lacrosse traveled to Clearwater, Fla., to practice and train for its upcoming season.
In an email to The Phillipian, Head Coach Kate Dolan wrote, “The trip to Florida was for any girl interested in lacrosse – it was not a ‘varsity’ trip – we had 26 players go and all had a great time. The trip had a lot of opportunities for scrimmages and game play so we took advantage of that and those opportunities helped the group as well as individuals assess areas for improvement and as well as strengths. Individually and collectively, there is a lot to work on as is true at this point in every season.”
In Florida, the team used two sets of fields over the course of five days. As a part of its training, Andover played four full-length games and six 30-minute games in a round-robin tournament.
Co-Captain Claire Kister ’16 said, “We were able to scrimmage at least one team a day. It was especially exciting to play Middlesex, who is our first opponent in the regular season. They were quick, aggressive, and smart. It was great to have the opportunity to play such a strong team during preseason.”
Throughout the week, Andover focused its training on strength and conditioning, as well as on forming a stronger team dynamic.
Co-Captain Kelly McCarthy ’16 said, “The main focuses of our practices and drills this past week were to develop our ability to work together on the field. Most players came into the trip with refined individual skills but needed work on their team offensive and defensive skills.”
When asked about the team’s offensive and defensive training, Beth Krikorian ’17 said, “Our main focuses were moving the ball on offense and having a creative team dynamic on offense. On defense, we worked on making sure we have a strong help defense and are able to crash onto the ball when one of our defenders needs help.”
Kister said, “We focused on a range of things during practice. Drills, stick-work, and team bonding exercises. Kelly and I were especially excited that a lot of younger girls decided to come on the trip.”
Last year’s team was comprised of six Seniors, five Uppers, six Lowers, and two Juniors. Of the six Seniors the team lost, one was an attacker, two were midfielders, and three were defenders.
Kister and McCarthy both acknowledge the massive responsibility of their roles as Co-Captains, as they will be filling the shoes of former Captain Caroline Garrity ’15, who will be missed for her strong leadership and offensive prowess.
Kister said, “I am really excited to play with younger girls. As a Senior, sometimes you don’t have the opportunity to get to know the underclassmen. There are so many underclassmen trying out for the team, and I am happy that I have the opportunity to play with them.”
After finishing last season with a 4-8-2 record, the team hopes to do a better job of controlling the intensity and maintaining control throughout the game.
McCarthy said, “The team’s main goal for the season is to finish every game. My past few seasons of Andover Lacrosse have had many games resulting in losses by just one goal. This year we want to gain momentum early on and maintain that throughout each game.”
Andover also hopes to create a strong and inclusive team environment.
Dolan wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “The goals for the varsity team for the season are to form a team that is cohesive, inclusive, relentless in its purpose, and proud to represent and compete for [Andover].”
Andover will continue to practice and develop team camaraderie, in preparation for its first game on April 4 against Middlesex.