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Women’s lacrosse gears up for new season

With fall term right around the corner, sports teams are beginning to get into their regular season including Women’s Lacrosse. Their first game is a scrimmage against Concordia-Chicago on Saturday, February 17.

The women are coming off a very strong season. Last year, they won their third CCIW regular season Championship in a row. Overall they finished 11-7, but it was the fifth time in a row they went undefeated in conference throughout the regular season.

The team was littered with awards, with Anne Hopkins and Olivia Mayer repeating as CCIW Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year. On top of this, four other Vikings were named All-Conference, and C.J. Durham was named CCIW Coach of the Year.

This year looks to be a challenging one after losing five starters and only returning seven. With nine new players, there’s a focus on learning said junior, Emily Lucnik.

“Since we’re in a rebuilding year, it’s important for us to make sure all of the new girls, including the freshman that were recruited, are brought up to speed on what it’s like to play lacrosse in college. Our other main focus is strengthening connections among returning players, and getting accustomed to our new team dynamic after losing the players we had and bringing on the new ones,” Lucnik said.

With this being a rebuilding year, Lucnik also talked about the goals as a team for this season.

“Our team goals and expectations are to spend this year building a solid foundation for the years to come. It’s Coach Durham’s second year here so she is settled in now and has already recruited really promising players for next year’s incoming class,” Lucnik said. “It is important for us to establish expectations now that will put us on the path to success in the future.”

Senior, Annalia Fowler, also talked about goals for this season.

“Our goal for this year is the same as it always is, to love the game of lacrosse for as long as we can. We are very lucky as a program to be competitive as we are and every day we go out with the goal to enjoy the sport that we love,” Fowler said.

With this season looking to have more challenges than previous ones, it’s important for the women to come together on and off the field which is what both Fowler and Lucnik put an emphasis on.

“Even though we have not had a single game yet this year, our team both on and off the field has endured more than I think any team should ever have to,” Fowler said. “I am very proud of how we have responded and what we have done to bounce back from the trails that have been thrown at us this year.”

Lucnik brings it together with a powerful message about their team.

“The returning girls on the team are amazing and full of dedication to Lacrosse which sets a great precedent for the new girls this year and pushes them to be the same way. Every single returning player puts in work inside and outside of practice with the common goal of bettering the team. Despite all of their hard work, it is who they are as people and how much we all care for one another that makes each of us critical to our success this season,” Lucnik said. “I think it’s that feeling of togetherness which strengthens our dedication to each other and the team that is going to make a big difference in how we do this year.”

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