Western Albemarle’s girls lacrosse team is adapting to new faces and new roles this spring, including first-year head coach Dana Boyle, the Warriors’ former assistant under Tara Hohenshelt. With a strong crop of experienced players also in the mix, like most teams, Western is searching for a little team chemistry.
Actually, was searching for it might be more appropriate. The Warriors went to work early Thursday night against Douglas Freeman and rolled past the Rebels 17-5 to pick up Western’s first win of the season. Western built an 8-2 lead out of the gate to take control of the game.
“It’s (about) playing consistent and getting that chemistry that we didn’t have until this game,” Boyle said. “Against a Douglas Freeman — they’re a great team — we came in prepared and ready to play.”
Western got a solid boost from freshman Mattie Shearer who poured in a team-high four goals on four shots while also dishing out a pair of assists.
“It’s great to see a freshman come in who’s really talented especially when you have upperclassmen who’ve led the way before her,” Boyle said. “It’s awesome to see the juniors connecting with the freshmen and I mean, she’s exceptional.”
Mady Starsia also put together a strong performance, with a hat trick and an assist. Starsia, one of the seasoned veterans that Boyle inherited, gives Western a capable, experienced distributor to run the offense through.
“We like to call her our silent assassin because she’s not very talkative on the field but she threads the ball incredibly well,” Boyle said. “It’s always great to have a leader behind the cage at X.”
Reid Ferguson, Libby Carbo and Anna Kreienbaum each finished with a pair of goals, with Kreienbaum setting the table well for teammates too with three assists. Izzy Shaffrey, Kira Repich, Marlena Flynn and Anne Patterson each scored once with Flynn and Patterson also notching one assist a piece. Ferguson was a big part of the early run with both her goals coming during the run that pushed Western out to an 8-2 lead.
Goalies Ava Divita and Kate Thomas combined for six saves behind the stingy Western defense that allowed just five goals. Kreienbaum and Starsia each forced a pair of turnovers.
Western returns to action next week in their Jefferson District opener at home against Fluvanna County.