It has taken St. Anne’s-Belfield’s girls lacrosse attacker Elizabeth Carden a little while to get back into a groove after missing a big chunk of the early part of the season battling mononucleosis.
“It was definitely difficult to earn the other players’ trust back because I wasn’t throwing and catching as well,” Carden said. “I really needed to prove to them that when they’re looking to feed and I’m open that I’m a trustworthy player to throw to and that I’m not going to turn it over.”
In an LIS semifinal clash with St. Catherine’s Tuesday afternoon, Carden proved worthy of the trust her teammates showed in her, scoring four goals as the Saints rolled 16-7 to advance to the conference final where they’ll face Collegiate.
“It’s been a long time coming back in terms of stick work and fitting in with the attack,” Carden said. “Finally I’m just back in the game, back to where I was at the very beginning of the season and very confident and comfortable going to goal.”
Carden’s strong performance bolstered the usual strong efforts of Caroline DiGiacomo and Annie Cory as DiGiacomo finished with six goals while Cory notched four. McKenzie and Carlin Maurer each had two assists, with McKenzie Maurer also scoring a goal.
The Saints weren’t pulling in the draw controls early on, though they improved as the game went on with Cory snagging four while DiGiacomo and Maddie Hunter each had three. That forced the Saints’ defense to make some stops early on, and those stops were critical as STAB built an 11-5 lead going into the half. It was a strong
performance for a unit that’s loaded with young but talented players.
“They’ve definitely come together in terms of talking and learning how to crash,” Carden said.
Mailynn Steppe picked up four ground balls as part of a lockdown defensive effort. In the second half the Saints continued to stifle St. Catherine’s, surrendering just two goals.
The win sets up a third clash with Collegiate. The two teams split their regular season matchups, with STAB winning the most recent edition 13-9 in late April.