BY JASON POMBO // March 5, 2017 //
The women’s lacrosse team looks to build off the 10-8 record that sent them to their 13th Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament in the last 16 years.
Despite that run, the Colonels were tabbed 7th in the Conference’s preseason poll which Head Coach Caitlin Roberts knows means little.
“I don’t pay attention much to preseason polls, if that’s how we’re looked at by the conference, then I enjoy being the underdog,” said Roberts, entering her 17th season at the helm.
The 2017 version of the Colonels has seven seniors, five of whom have played consistently for their four years here. Coach Roberts will be looking to these seniors to provide leadership and success to the team. The graduating members are also tasked with being role models to the inexperienced crop of freshmen new to the campus.
“This [freshman] group reminds me of our current senior class…they are both extremely hard workers,” Roberts said, regarding her new additions. “We have sixnew girls, and they all bring something different to the table.”
All 18 women on the roster have a chance to play in coach’s eyes this season just from the way they continuously make each other better. “They are all one team, they push each other to be better players, and work extremely hard as a team, not as individuals,” said Roberts.
That fusion of players is a key component to winning games and if everyone is on the same page, Coach Roberts sees good things happening. She noted that it’s “the hard work, the dedication, the understanding of peoples’ roles, buying into the philosophy, and playing as a family” that ultimately brings championships.
But before they can get too far, the Colonels need to open the season on Tuesday. Roberts displayed her excitement for seeing how the units gel together in real game action and not against their own teammates in practice.
That start can’t come soon enough to Roberts and her staff who noted that the expectation is a top-four finish in the conference order to host a playoff game which they haven’t done in seven years.
The obvious main goal for the team is to win the championship, but Coach Roberts knows not to get too ahead of herself, one step at a time. That first step comes Tuesday afternoon at 4 p.m. as Salem State makes the voyage for the non-conference battle.
At the end of the day, Roberts feels her girls (along with all the other sports teams) deserve “as many people as possible to come out and support this team.”
Whaddya say, Curry?