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The Other Red Zone Awareness- The Spring Burn, I mean Spring Break Edition

Mar 27, 2010 by Alexandra Crean

Spring Break. To many students across the country, these two words connote exotic locales and wild nights, but for the Mount Holyoke College Lacrosse Team, the “Girls Gone Mild,” Spring Break conveys a much needed reLAXation from our usual rigorous schedules- a delicate balance between academics, athletics, exterior clubs/organizations, and social time with our non-lacrosse friends. Also, for the “Girls Gone Mild”, Spring Break is an excellent time to solely focus on the game that we all love, to develop lasting off-field friendships, and of course, to enjoy the beautiful weather of Florida.

Lacrosse

On Friday, March 12, we boarded the bus to Logan International Airport anticipating a 7:15 PM departure from Boston to arrive in Fort Lauderdale, Florida at 10:30 PM. However, due to bad weather in the South, our flight was delayed by over 3 hours. Finally, our plane took-off at 10:45 PM to arrive in Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport at 1:45 AM. Although we were exhausted from our traveling, we were ready to combat an 8 – 10 AM practice slot so in the afternoon, we could enjoy the sunny skies and warm waters. However, we did not arrive at our hotel until 4:30 AM, and so, we did not have morning practice. On Saturday afternoon, we had the opportunity of stretching out on the sand to recharge our batteries, so that we could hit the pitch for an 8-10 PM practice. Many commented how it was cool to be practicing at that timeslot, especially in Florida’s temperate night weather. Needless to say, we had a productive and fruitful practice.

On Sunday, March 14, we were finally able to take advantage of our 8 – 10 AM practice at the Lake Lytal Park of Wellington, Florida, and afterwards, head over to Delray Beach for sun, swimming, and an entertaining game of volleyball. (Once again, we thank Coach for thoughtfully nabbing us the early practice slots!) Entertaining is an understatement about our game of beach volleyball. While our team is extremely athletic- superior cardiovascular conditioning, excellent muscle tone (due largely to our lifts), and of course, superb hand-eye coordination, our beach volleyball skills were questionable but certainly hilarious. In our walk-through practice, the next day, many reported soreness in their abs and attributed it to the copious amounts of laughing at obscure hits (either missed or skyrocketed out of the court in the opposite direction) or ridiculous dives for the ball. By the end of our day at Delray Beach, we were eventually able to scrap together a decent-looking game.

By Monday, March 15, we were ready to play our 1st of 3 games scheduled to be played in Florida. We squashed Norwich University 20-5 and continued the winning streak we established against Westfield State on Thursday, March 11. Notable highlights include Junior attacker Clara Raugei’s 6 goals, 2 assists (with her parents, all the way from Alpharetta, Georgia, in attendance) and defense letting in only 1 goal in the 2nd half (Congratulations defense!).

Lacrosse

With 2 wins under our belt, we celebrated on Tuesday, March 16, by enjoying a wonderful afternoon and evening in downtown West Palm Beach. After our 10 AM – 12 PM practice, we headed over to Sophomore goalkeeper, Jeannie Peterson’s godmother’s house where we lounged by the pool, ate some delicious pizza, created heavenly ice cream sundaes, and for those who were daring, jumped off their dock into the refreshing ocean water. The Lyons would like to thank Jeannie’s godmother for welcoming us into her beautiful home! That evening, we put on our Spring Break best to enjoy a delicious dinner at Cheesecake Factory and tend to some much needed shopping at the City Place Outdoor Mall.

By Wednesday, March 17, it seemed as though our Spring Break trip was at its close. However, we still had 2 games to go- one of which we needed to “honor our past” and win for tradition’s sake. For the past 2 seasons, Mount Holyoke has defeated Keene State College by a single goal. So, at the end of the game, with the scoreboard reading a 16-15 over Keene State, we thought that we had continued our unintentional tradition. However, to our excitement, (10 minutes after the game), we found out that in fact, the scorer had forgotten to add one of our goals and that instead the final score was 17-15, Mount Holyoke.

Not only had we “honored” our tradition of beating Keene State, but more importantly, we had improved upon it by unintentionally raising the final goal margin. The reason I say “unintentionally raise the goal margin” is that for good portion of the 2nd half, we thought that we were down by a single goal; when in reality, we were tied the entire time. That being said, we stepped up our game and played with some of the most heart I have seen to date. The end result of this game would not have been if it wasn’t for First-year midfielder Katya Planson’s groundball. This enabled the offense to possess and for the winning goal to be scored (shot by Sophomore Midfielder Hilary Bombard). When we were “tied” with Keene State, had it not been for Senior Perry Markell’s goal at 10 s left, we might have had to play an unnecessary overtime for a game that we had unknowingly already won.

Thursday, March 18 marked our final game at the Spring Fling Tournament and our final day spent in Florida. We played disciplined Ithaca College. Although we held the Bombers to a close game in first half, we had a difficult time staying with them the whole game, and we lost 14-6. Similar to our loss to Western New England College, our bombardment by the Bombers of Ithaca College served as an excellent learning tool which in addition added fires to our bellies and enabled us to defeat Bridgewater State College 14-11 this past Thursday (March 26).

Lacrosse

A freshly tanned team fiercely clad in our navy blue uniforms emerged on the grass field at Bridgewater State College, ready to win. We played with confidence and composure. We outhustled them to the groundballs, which they should have gotten on their own grass field. We dominated on draw-controls. We matched them defensively in their midfield transition. We marked them tight in the defensive end. We preserved through painful off-ball contact. We played with heart- lyon heart to be exact. Not only have the Mount Holyoke College Lyons had a physical (tanned) transformation, but our physical and mental game grows better with each day. And with that comes the time for contests which are testament to our improvement. NEWMAC games are around the corner. First up, Wheaton College. You better believe we are ready to fight and hungry for the competition.

Photos courtesy of Taylor Heges and Ujwala Ramakrishna

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