Davidson Lacrosse Puts the Atlantic 10 on Notice

 

In the final weeks of the semester, Davidson’s across team looks to their last few games with anticipation. Photo by Tim Cowie.

By: Sam Thomas ’20

Sports Editor

Huge strides have been made this off-season for the women’s lacrosse team. After last year’s disappointing regular season, the ‘Cats are back on track with a 7-5 record and making huge strides into the latter half of their 2018 season. Seeing as they are already one win short of last year’s season total, the Davidson women are in prime position to improve upon their Atlantic 10 semifinal appearance from a year ago.

The key to this year’s success over last year’s team comes from the fact that, as Christine Molinari ‘18 says, “everybody on our team gets play time and puts points on the board. This instilled confidence in ourselves and each other that [impacts] all over the field, which is not always easy to do with an inexperienced team.” Though this bodes well for the future, the team is also poised for success right now. The senior leadership of Molinari, Mackenzie Sivilli ‘18, Rachel Hianik ‘18 , and Rose Woolson ‘18 have provided a strong base for the team thus far and will continue to do so as they have for the previous three seasons.

The leadership and coaching staff have really upped the ante for the underclassmen and prepared them for the tough stretch of conference play ahead. “One of the biggest differences this year has been the utilization of practice players. It’s hard to practice things like transition with such a small team, so our assistant coach recruited some club laxers to help us run a few drills,” noted Molinari. “It’s been awesome to have other Davidson community members invested and willing to help us out!”

The ‘Cats have approached the first half of the season with an incredibly balanced attack, with Jordan Wood ‘20, Olivia Carey ‘21, and Molinari all scoring over 28 points so far in the season. This is all part of the overall two-way scheme of converting successful defensive stands into offensive opportunities. Woolson leads the way on the defensive side by already posting over 125 saves on the season with a .571 save percentage.

Coming off great wins against George Mason and La Salle to open up their conference schedule at 2-2, the ‘Cats approach what Molinari calls “the toughest month of our season.” Though their next two matchups are at home, the ‘Cats finish their regular season conference schedule with three straight games on the road against Duquesne, St. Bonaventure, and George Washington. Their remaining home matchups are against Richmond and VCU. Richmond currently sits atop the A-10 with a 9-2 record and is 3-0 in the conference. That is bookended with a matchup against similarly touted George Washington, who also sits 9-2 with a 2-1 record in conference.

The road trip at the end of the season will exhibit the resilience that the team has shown throughout the entire season thus far, both conference and non-conference. “Our non-conference losses to William and Mary, Colgate, and Mercer were within 1-3 goals. Those close and competitive battles have helped prepare us for the fierce competition the A-10 brings,” says Molinari. Even in conference, their matchups have been much more competitive than a year ago. Even in their game in Amherst against UMass, the team had an increased level of intensity than their semifinal loss in last year’s A-10 conference tournament.

As we approach the home stretch of the spring, the ‘Cats certainly look to cherish the season while capitalizing on opportunities that present themselves. “The fact that my time as a Davidson lacrosse player is ending has been a tough pill to swallow, but this season still presents many opportunities,” said Molinari. “This team is ready to battle our way into conference and build on the success of years past.”

Be sure to watch the ‘Cats as they take on A-10 leader Richmond Friday at 6pm and Sunday against VCU in their final two home matchups of the season.

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