Girls Lacrosse studying for finals


photo by Chatham Farrell

Junior Ashley Rassel works to get around against a Lake Howell player. The game took place on Feb. 27 at the Sam Momary Stadium and resulted in a 19-1 win.

“I’ve been coaching for 12 years and my team now has the most energy and so much persistence,” Head coach Mitch Whittington said. “They always give their fullest during practice and the girls have such great communication between them, which is super important for games.”

With two games left in the regular season, the girls lacrosse team is on a hot streak with a record of 12-2 and are ranked fifth in the state. The team also has wrapped up the top seed in this district, and they will play in the first round of districts on April 17.

“We still have a whole lot of goals to meet, like going to district finals,” Whittington said. “But my team is just amazing in their work ethic and playing as a team.”
The season included a revenge win to Oviedo, with a lopsided end score of 17-5 on March 6.

“They have been our biggest rival for as long as I can remember and they won district finals last year, so it’s nice to see our hard work has paid off,” defender Maddie Pleasants said.

The team beat district rival Winter Park on March 27, 18-9, which secured them the number one seed in districts. The team will now play Winter Park again in the first rounds of districts, and if they win, they will go to district finals on April 19.

Another important win for the team was at a conference game, the team played against Lake Brantley on March 2, and ended the game with a score of 12-1.

“As a team this has been our best season so far,” attacker Renee Campbell said. “We work really well together and it has always been about teamwork.”

With the season coming to an end, all hopes are on going to the district finals, becoming district champions and advancing to the state playoffs. One senior who will be leaving this year, has been playing since her freshman year and has never made it to the district finals.

“In my four years of playing lacrosse, we have never made it to district finals,” Pleasants said. “This has been the best season ever and best team ever, so my last wish for my last season is for us to make it.”

In 2016, girl’s lacrosse lost in district semifinals to Oviedo, 20-10. In 2017, they also lost in the semifinals to Oviedo, 13-12.

Pleasants got moved up to varsity her sophomore year and she says she has learned so much leadership skills, due to switching her position from attacker to defense.

“They are some of my best friends and everyone is so much fun to be around,” Pleasants said. “This is the best team I have ever been a part of and I think we all deserve to finally go to district finals and win.”

With the great record, beating Oviedo and clinching the first seed; the team is on a roll and they are realizing and taking advantage of what they can do and what they can achieve. In fact, at the beginning of the season, the team had a goal of only letting in eight goals per game but their average is three.

“Accomplishing all these goals and going beyond them is amazing,” Campbell said. “It’s little things like this that motivates us to push.”

The team continues to work hard at practices, giving their fullest and doing anything to help them win districts.

“Each position do things to help them, like the offensive players do 30 extra minutes of shooting before practice,” said attacker Katie Bolotte. “We also condition as a team to stay in shape.”

Even with all the motivation and hard work going towards making it past the semifinals in districts and becoming district champions, there is always some room for fun.

“We goof around all the time and we are always jumping around and laughing,” midfielder Laila Viator said. “Like half-way through the season we gave everyone nicknames; we call Katie Williams KDub and recently they came up with a nickname for me, all Laila the Viator.”