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Archive for June, 2018

June 30, 2018 — Towards a national all-star game system?

Tonight, exactly three miles from where the game of women’s lacrosse was introduced, the annual Under Armour high-school girls’ all-star game is being held at Johns Hopkins University.

Next month, about 5 1/2 miles from where the game of field hockey was introduced, the third Under Armour high-school girls’ Select game will be played at the Newton Campus of Boston College.

Under Armour, the Baltimore-based sports apparel company, has made these all-star occasions a habit, whether it is in boys’ and girls’ lacrosse, field hockey, football, and in other pursuits.

Most of the time, the games showcase the top current talent just before they head off to college. Other times, there are games for non-seniors where the next generation of stars will test their skills against the best from around the country.

This week, as good as the senior lacrosse players have been and with all of the hype surrounding players such as Maddie Jenner and Charlie Rudy, for me, the attention should be surrounding the South team in the girls’ Highlight Division. That’s the team that Caitlyn Wurzberger is playing on.

Wurzberger is the sophomore from Delray American Heritage (Fla.) who first made headlines for making a verbal commitment to Syracuse while still in middle school. But she has backed up with amazing play in her first three varsity seasons (Florida allows middle-schoolers to play on varsity). She has, three times, exceeded 100 goals and 100 assists, a remarkable achievement. Barring injury or illness, she is likely to obliterate every offensive record ever conceived.

If you have a chance this summer, either at Under Armour, I have a feeling that seeing her play is going to be must-see lacrosse.

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June 29, 2018 — Final Statwatch for 2018

Hi, all. With the end of the scholastic season last Saturday night, we finish off Statwatch for this season.

Statwatch is a weekly compilation of girls’ lacrosse statistics from various sources including MaxPreps.com, NJ Advance Media, The Harrisburg Patriot-News, The Providence Journal, The Albany Times-Union, Long Island Newsday, The Worcester Telegram, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, MassLive.com, the Denver Post, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, MSG Varsity, the Ann-Arbor News, and The Washington Post.

I encourage all coaches, managers, athletic directors, and any influencers out there to convince your team, your school, league, or state governing body to adopt the easy-to-use MaxPreps.com platform, and we encourage you to get your fellow teams to enter their information there as well as whichever is your local news site, so that we can aim for as complete a statistical picture of the country as possible.

INDIVIDUAL GOALS, SEASON
147 Charlie Rudy, Novato (Calif.)
137 Jane Earley, Falmouth (Mass.) Academy
135 Madison Ahearn, Hingham Notre Dame (Mass.)
129 Kira Sides, Cape May Court House Middle Township (N.J.)
121 Kaitlyn Mead, Sparta (N.J.)
118 Camryn Rogers, Somerville (N.J.)
116 Kaitlyn Cumisky, New Providence (N.J.)
116 Kaylon Buckner, St. Louis Ladue Horton Watkins (Mo.)
115 Kelly Gearin, Lunenberg (Mass.)
114 Cody Butt, Lynn St. Mary’s (Mass.)
114 Molly Dankowski, Cumming Pinecrest Academy (Ga.)
114 Sydney Kilgore, Morrow Little Miami (Ohio)
112 Ally Largey, Colts Neck (N.J.)
110 Bailey Gehler, San Diego Our Lady of Peace (Calif.)
109 Colby Cooper, Upper Marlboro Henry J. Wise (Md.)
109 Ryann Doyle, Seymour (Tenn.)
107 Jamie Level, Novato (Calif.)
106 Madison Tare, Camp Hill Trinity School (Pa.)
105 Caitlyn Wurzburger, Delray American Heritage (Fla.)

INDIVIDUAL ASSISTS, SEASON
120 Jackie Stoller, Wayland (Mass.)
114 Caitlyn Wurzburger, Delray American Heritage (Fla.)
110 Logan Dougherty, Fairfax W. T. Woodson (Va.)
109 Maddie Barber, Cape May Court House Middle Township (N.J.)
101 Erin Kloostra, Ada Township Forest Hills Central (Mich.)

93 Christie Coulter, Alexandria St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes (Va.)
92 Reilly Casey, Alexandria Bishop Ireton (Va.)
83 Bailey Thomas, Dexter General Jacob J. Brown Central (N.Y.)
82 Nicole Ferrera, Morristown (N.J.)
77 Shaylah Marciano, Princeton (N.J.)
77 Adriana Ingarra, North Branford (Conn.)
76 Jane Earley, Falmouth (Mass.) Academy
74 Sydney Roderick, Adams South Jefferson (N.Y.)
73 Sadie Albert, Katonah Harvey (N.Y.)
70 Hali Sibilia, Greenwood Village Cherry Creek (Colo.)

INDIVIDUAL GOALS, CAREER
479 Jane Earley, Falmouth (Mass.) Academy
466 Charlie Rudy, Novato (Calif.)
418 Alexa Weber, Manchester East Catholic (Conn.)
381 Ryann Doyle, Seymour (Tenn.)

358 Camryn Rogers, Somerville (N.J.)
343 Tara Palermo, Mashpee (Mass.)
305 Caitlyn Wurzburger, Delray American Heritage (Fla.)
279 Erin Coykendall, Spencerport (N.Y.)
269 Braelie Kempney, Carthage (N.Y.)

INDIVIDUAL ASSISTS, CAREER
337 Caitlyn Wurzburger, Delray American Heritage (Fla.)
261 Erin Coykendall, Spencerport (N.Y.)
213 Braelie Kempney, Carthage (N.Y.)
184 Charlie Rudy, Novato (Calif.)
147 Alexa Weber, Manchester East Catholic (Conn.)
145 Ryann Doyle, Seymour (Tenn.)

141 Jane Earley, Falmouth (Mass.) Academy

CONSECUTIVE WINS
38 Upper Arlington (Ohio)
29 Denver Colorado Academy (Colo.)

COACHING WINS
772 Kathy Jenkins, Alexandria St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes (Va.)
556 Deanna Knobloch, Moorestown (N.J.)

Thanks for reading, and we’ll be back with lacrosse’s Statwatch next spring.

June 28, 2018 — To no-one’s surprise

As has been usual when the National Futures Tournament teams have been broken down into regions, Pennsylvania had the whip hand when it came to the medals in the U-16 and U-19 divisions.

And even in the “melting pot” that is the U-14 division, there was some pretty significant Pennsylvania representation. That representation is in the form of rising freshman Macy Szukics, who has made the U.S. junior national indoor team and has scored 45 goals in a middle-school season in the Allentown Parkland (Pa.) school district. She will play at Newtown Square Episcopal Academy (Pa.) this fall.

In the U-16s, Cortina won the gold medal thanks to performances by Sofia Acosta, Lauren Wadas, and Annike Herbine, who have been teammates with Szukics on the W.C. Eagles club team. Cortina defeated a Great Lakes team from Region 9 that had players from Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and western Pennsylvania.

The U-19s, to nobody’s surprise, went 1-2 as Sochi defeated Amsterdam 2-1. Sochi was a very loaded side, including last year’s national scoring leader Mackenzie Allessie, 50-goal scorer Sammy Popper, and Popper’s U.S. senior women’s indoor national teammates Paitlyn Wirth and Madison Orobono. Amsterdam was led by U.S. age-group national teamer Charlotte de Vries, indoor national teamer Anarose McDonough, Penn Manor luminary Emma Deberdine, and the attacking midfield sisters from Downington (Pa.) West, Ciana and Romea Riccardo.

There’s one tournament left to go, the Young Women’s National Championship, and it finishes tomorrow. Should be interesting to see how these eight teams shake out.

June 27, 2018 — A college touchstone

Dear readers, I beg your indulgence today, because I heard last evening that a friend of mine from college died on Monday. Colon cancer claimed my friend Constance, who was not only a very smart person, but a visionary in more ways than one.

Constance Adams worked for Lockheed Martin, a contractor who supplied key components for the International Space Station. She helped design Virgin Galactic’s spaceport in New Mexico. She also applied lessons learned from water conservation aboard ISS to help with the Millennium Development Goals.

I knew she had that kind of acumen and vision even when we were in the same dorm complex in the mid-1980s. Written on a placard on one wall of her dorm room were the words “THE AVALON PROJECT.” I have been told this was her vision of a collective of artists working alongside each other, allowing interaction and collaboration. It’s a vision which, over the last few years, has led to entrepreneurial space-sharing services such as WeWork and Spark.

Constance Adams was a young woman who did not suffer fools gladly, and who had a wicked sense of irony. Her spiky black motorcycle jacket was emblazoned with a bumper sticker that read, “Women for Reagan.” And she was anything but a Reaganite.

She lived her life in an unfettered, open way which I thought was completely and utterly awesome. I always wondered how she was doing even as I marked major reunions every five years. But I never got news about her because she was two years ahead of me.

That is, until Monday evening.

I guess, when you get to know enough people, and when you get to care about them, the loss of friends, acquaintances, and family members really begin to accumulate. A friend of mine told me last night that the reason why deaths hurt so much is because we love, and hurting for that reason is the most noble reason there is.

That’s an incredible statement. And so true.

Safe home, Constance. I’m raising a tasse at Cafe Pamplona in your honor this fall.

 

June 26, 2018 — Top 10 for the week of June 24

With the end of the scholastic season last Saturday, this is the last of our back-of-the-envelope surveys of the Top 10 girls’ lacrosse teams in the United States. We’ll have a more well-researched Top 50 next month.

Our honorary No. 11 Team of the Week is Topsfield Masconomet (Mass.). The Chieftains had run smack into North Andover (Mass.) four straight years in the MIAA Division 1 North bracket, losing every time. But Masconomet managed to run out to a 7-3 lead on the way to an 8-6 victory.

1. Towson Notre Dame Prep (Md.) 17-4

Season complete: Blazers were in every game this season except for one this year; with a few breaks, they could have been 21-0 on the year

2. Manhasset (N.Y.) 18-1

Season complete: Won NYSPHSAA Class B final with a 6-4 win over Brighton (N.Y.)

3. Glenelg (Md.) 12-2

Season complete: Gladiators won the MPSSAA Class 2A final with a 6-5 win over Parkton Hereford (Md.)

4. Owings Mills McDonogh (Md.) 21-1

Season complete: McDonogh made a few too many mistakes early in the IAAM Class “A” final against Notre Dame Prep and never was able to catch up

5. Novato (Calif.) 24-1

Season complete: Hornets bested El Dorado Hills Oak Ridge (Calif.) 13-9 to win fourth straight CIF North Coast Section championship

6. Alexandria Bishop Ireton (Va.) 18-3

Season complete: Won VISAA final last weekend with a four-overtime thriller against Alexandria St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes (Va.)

7. Delray American Heritage (Fla.) 23-1

Season complete: Stallions beat Orlando Lake Highland (Fla.) 10-7 to win FHSAA final

8. Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.) 19-2

Season complete: Beat Honeoye Falls-Lima (N.Y.) 18-3 in MPSSAA Class C final

9. Moorestown (N.J.) 23-2

Season complete: The NJSIAA Group III champion Quakers beat Ridgewood (N.J.) 14-9 in Tournament of Champions final

10. Wellesley (Mass.) 23-1

Season complete: Beat Walpole (Mass.) in MIAA Division I final on Saturday

11. Topsfield Masconomet (Mass.) 13-7

Season complete: After the win over North Andover, fell 12-11 to Marblehead (Mass.)

Who’s out: None

And bear in mind: New Canaan (Conn.) 17-5, Norwell (Mass.) 22-3, Ridgewood (N.J.) 24-3, Syracuse Christian Brothers Academy (N.Y.) 18-3, Rosemont Agnes Irwin (Pa.) 19-6, Kennett Square Unionville (Pa.) 23-2, Alexandria St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes (Va.) 26-4, Fairfax W.T. Woodson (Va.) 19-3

June 25, 2018 — Is it open season on girls’ scholastic lacrosse coaches?

The 2018 scholastic lacrosse season is going to be known for the end of Owings Mills McDonogh’s (Md.) 198-game win streak.

But in a long-term sense, I think it could also be known for the number of coaches who have either left, resigned, or fired under other-than-transparent circumstances.

The latest is a coach who brought her team to the New York Class B state championship barely three weeks ago, Danielle Gallagher of Manhasset (N.Y.). Manhasset, for much of the last few weeks, has been regarded as the best public-school team in America.

The former U.S. women’s national team member, despite her success on the pitch, has been told by her school district that her services are no longer required.

Which, of course, is mind-bogglingly stupid.

It is not, however, unprecedented. The same happened to Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (N.Y.) coach Jake McHerron last month, just before his team embarked on a state playoff run.

In both instances, the district and school board have thrown up barriers to media and others inquiring as to the reasons for the firings, as if they are trying to cover up after themselves.

Moves like this, to me, are highly suspect. They are violations of the TopOfTheCircle.com Third Law of Lacrosse: “Players play, coaches coach, officials officiate, and administrators administer. Any deviation from these roles is a violation of good order within the sport.”

It makes me wonder who within the school districts in question believes that they are better coaches than the incumbent.

After all, the firing of a successful coach does send a message: perhaps you don’t want to coach there.

June 24, 2018 — A new entry

The latest entry in my virtual Class of 1988 Red Book is up at 19 Harvard Blazers. Enjoy!