The Lehigh women’s lacrosse team is looking for redemption after its five-goal loss to Loyola University in the semifinals last spring.
Last season, the Mountain Hawks finished with a record of 13-5, 6-3 in the conference. After losing only four seniors last year, this year’s team considers itself closer than ever before.
“Last year, losing in the semifinals was devastating, but also makes us want to win that much more this year,” senior midfielder Lauren Beausoleil said. “Loyola won based on its execution on both the offensive and defensive end and that is something our team is focusing on this year. If we follow our coaches’ plan, not just in one half but for the full 60 minutes, we will be a tough competitor. Discipline is everything, and that is something our team wants to be known for.”
The team’s first game this season will be away at No. 7 Penn State University. As far as teams to watch for, Beausoleil said that Boston University, Navy and No. 20 Loyola are always tough, competitive opponents for the team.
“We are fortunate to be playing all of them on our own turf this year, which is exciting as a senior,” she said.
Another senior, attacker Allison LaBeau, has similar feelings about the promise of this season. Beausoleil has played with LaBeau for many years, which helps the team’s chemistry on the field.
“Having only graduated four seniors, we are lucky to have a group of players with years of experience with one another which only benefits us on the field,” Beausoleil said. “Playing with LaBeau and Jules D’Orazio year after year makes this season exciting. I’m looking forward to seeing what this 2017 team does because I think it’s going to be one of the best seasons to come.”
LaBeau said one major adjustment for the team will be the addition of the shot clock.
“We have to make sure everyone is on the same page in order to do what we want within our time frame,” LaBeau said. “It also makes the game much faster so fitness has been a big priority during the season.”
Last season, LaBeau led the team with 46 goals and 34 assists. Following LaBeau was Beausoleil, who tied with sophomore Courtney Henig for 29 goals.
LaBeau also said freshman midfielder Sondra Dickey is going to be a key asset to this year’s team, along with a few others from the underclassmen group.
“This year’s team is more disciplined than we have been in the past,” LaBeau said. “I believe this team has a lot of heart and pride in what we work to accomplish, so with that mentality I know we’ll do great things this season.”
The home opener is scheduled for March 4 at 1 p.m. at Ulrich Sports Complex. This will be the third game in the team’s season, following games against Penn State and Iona College. The first Patriot League game is set for March 18 at 11 a.m. at Holy Cross.