Lakewood OH

Girls lacrosse previews 2014 (area teams)

Bay senior midfielder Sophie Steynes returns to lead the Rockets' strong senior class. Photo courtesy of Scott Evans

Seniors have Rockets ready to blast off

By Ryan Kaczmarski

The Bay High School girls varsity lacrosse team is in its third year of existence this season, and with a multitude of returning players, the Rockets are ready for success.

“We are very pleased with our development,” Bay head coach Dave Lowery said. “The sport has become very popular at Bay, with 50 girls playing on the varsity and junior varsity teams.”

The Rockets only lost three girls to graduation, which means there is a strong senior class with a lot of experience on the field this year.

“We have a lot of great female athletes in Bay, who are quickly improving on the lacrosse field,” Lowery explained. “Our team is led by senior midfielder and captain Sophie Steynes, who has led our team in scoring the last two years. Sophie does everything for the team, leading us in scoring and ground balls, taking draws and leading the midfield defense.

“Other important seniors include midfielder Krista Blumentalis, tough defenders Rachel Jerome and Ellen Hanna, and goalkeeper Emma Grubaugh,” he added. “we have a great group of juniors, including high-scoring attacker Audrey Sullivan, speedy midfielder Bailey Lemke, versatile midfielders Megan Lowery and Emmy Drenkhan, attackers Katherine Kerka and Katie Galang, and steady defender Allison Finley.”

The Rockets finished last season at 8-7, including a playoff win against Gilmour Academy.

“Our goal this year is to reach 10 wins and win at least two playoff games,” Lowery concluded.

The Magnificat High School lacrosse team had an incredible 2013 season, going 14-5, and making it to the Division I Elite Eight.

“Last year’s squad was very talented,” Blue Streaks fourth-year head coach Kelly Simari said. “We made it to the regional finals.

“We only lost five seniors from that team, with four of them being starters. Two of those seniors played varsity all four years, so they had a huge influence on the team.”

Some of the key returning letter winners include goalkeeper Olivia Stafford, Brooke McQuinn and Christine Samanich.

“All three of these players have played on varsity since their freshman year,” Simari said. They all are able to read the field and control what is going on in the game.”

This season’s tri-captains are seniors Heidi Danckers, Caroline Coughlin and Samanich.

“All three bring something different to our team,” Simari explained. “Hiedi definitely encourages everyone to do their best and finds the positive in every situation.

“Caroline brings competitiveness and drive to win to the team, and Christine is able to assess situations on the field and fix them for the better.”

There will be five sophomores on the starting roster this season, including standouts Emily Beegan and Nina DeCaris.

“Our team strength is our defense,” Simari said. “They have great communication and ability to adapt to the situation. We also have some key offensive players that are able to make plays happen.

“Our team goal is to have a better record than last season, and always go to the state tournament.”

Avon Lake High School is fielding a varsity team for the very first time this season.

The Shoregals will be led by first-year coaches Lauren Rafferty and Darci Gervaise, and have six returning starters from last year’s club team, including Claire Ferrell (goalkeeper), Molly Maloney, Regan Rusher, Becca Bartram, Rachel Drapcho and Kaelie Wilson. The key newcomers to the team include sophomore Mallory Masarik, and freshmen Megan Twyman, Isabel Calogeras and Sarah Lucas.





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