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You are here: Home Section Table Neighborhood News Girls Varsity Lacrosse Team Weathers Stormy Season
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Girls Varsity Lacrosse Team Weathers Stormy Season

LAXBronxvilleSophomore Sophia Franco dodges past a defender en route to goal. The Scarsdale Girls Lacrosse team has been weathering a chaotic storm since the abrupt firing of their 3-year head coach Genette Zhongetti. Since Zhongetti was let go with little time to fill the head coaching position, Athletic Director Ray Pappalardi and assistant coach Megan Matthews courteously stepped in to fill the void. With an 0-4 record, including one loss against a Bronxville team that now carries Zhongetti as an assistant coach, the Raiders have not started the season with the best foot forward. On Thursday (4/5), the team lost to White Plains, a program that the Scarsdale girls lacrosse program has swept every season in recent memory. Other losses were to Rye and Mahopac, both respected lacrosse programs.

Still, the demonstrated issues do not stem solely from the dismissal of the head coach. What some seem to neglect in talking about this team’s losses is the large hole created by the graduation of several impact players from last season. Emma Coleman, a now freshman defender playing lacrosse at St. Michaels, Erin Nicholas, a ruthless midfielder who plays at Middlebury, Angie Burns, a stellar goalie, and Jilly Mehlman, a player with unmatched speed who now runs at Yale, were all main contributors to the team’s success last year.

Additionally, the new Scarsdale team boasts a minuscule roster compared to other programs in the area. While teams like Bronxville and Mamaroneck could fill an entire roster from their bench alone, the Raiders have a mere two subs on the bench at a time, 14 players in total on the Varsity level.

The team has seen progression from their first game to the most recent match against Bronxville. Junior Sam Felder noted that the squad needed to work on playing together as a team, as well as “the basics: ground balls, crisp passes, and communication on defense.” Following the disappointing loss to White Plains, the Raiders entered the Bronxville game with a unique fire and passion which they hope to continue in their upcoming games against Ursuline Wednesday (4/11) and Saturday (4/14). Scarsdale ultimately lost to Bronxville 13-21. When asked about the importance of the Bronxville game, Senior Captain Lily Steckel noted that “to be honest, this game was just like any other game. Of course, we wanted to win. As we learned in our gut-wrenching loss against White Plains, they are all important. I don’t think that as a team it is beneficial to dwell on things that we can’t control. We learned from this game, and that’s all we can ask for.” Still, an inevitable sense of awkwardness radiated from the Scarsdale bench as players lined up to shake hands with Zhongetti, seeing their former leader and mentor for the first time since the suburban-scandal. The handshake line, which usually embodies sportsmanship and respect for the game, was more representative of ill will and division.

LAXBronsville2The Raiders celebrate after a goal.

Going forward, the team is focusing on “more intense practices”, as highlighted by Junior Chessy Greenwald. “We all really want to be good, and we know that we can be, but everything just has to be elevated in the way we play and practice.” With a majority of the season still ahead of them, the squad will try to make the most of it. When asked about the goal for the rest of the season, Steckel emphasized, “Ray always tells us that we should be in control of our season. Being in control means working as hard and as smart as we can, and accepting the result knowing we worked together as a team.”

Photos by Jon Thaler - see more here.

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