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May 30, 2021 — An appreciation: Charlotte North, attacking midfielder, Boston College

One in an occasional series.

The Syracuse defense, in the final two minutes of play, were chasing.

They were chasing the ball and the Boston College attacking seven as they started running a stall with the team up 15-11 in the NCAA Division I final this afternoon.

The math favored Boston College; up four goals with a minimum of two possessions remaining, and with a two-player advantage because of a pair of untimely Syracuse penalty cards. The ball was passed around with larger and larger openings being torn in the Orange defense. Syracuse goalie Asa Goldstock marked up a player to try to either get an interception or a check to get the ball back, leaving the crease open.

Boston College’s Belle Smith had an open lane, and saw senior Charlotte North with a clear lane to goal. The pass was made.

Usually, in this situation, you tend to get your players to retain possession and wind the clock down, even with a four-goal lead. But Charlotte North took the layup.

The clocks at Unitas Stadium told the story. The game clock said 1:11. The penalty clock for the two-player advantage read :01.

And moments after North scored her record 102nd goal of the 2021 season, BC was No. 1.

For five years, the Boston College women’s lacrosse team has been chasing the dream of the gilded wooden plaque awarded to the NCAA champion. The Eagles made the national final in 2017, 2018, and 2019, but fell short against championship-level Maryland and James Madison sides. Boston College did not have a chance to show how good it was because the 2020 season was truncated due to the worldwide pandemic.

But in the late going this year, heading into the Final Four, Boston College found its form. After getting the four seed in the Division I bracket, the Eagles 10-goalled Fairfield, Temple, and Notre Dame to get to the Final Four. BC fearlessly took on the nation’s No. 1 team in North Carolina, which had a rostrum of star players which may have been the most talented collegiate side in 20 years.

BC was able to take down UNC 11-10, then faced off against Syracuse in the final.

It was in this game when North was at her brash and athletic best. She scored goals which were reminiscent of the kinds of goals you saw on the professional or international level, scored by players like Dana Dobbie or Kara Mupo or Taylor Cummings.

North is at the vanguard of a phalanx of attacking players such as Izzy Scane, Emma Ward, and Jamie Ortega who have the capability of upsetting the balance of a game all by herself, which is somewhat unusual in what has always been seen as more of a team game.

North, the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four, is now the favorite to win the Tewaaraton Trophy when it is awarded in a couple of weeks in Foxborough, Mass.

And with her dominating power and athleticism, she would be a worthy recipient.

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