Girls lacrosse rules in opener

Published 9:46 am Thursday, March 14, 2019

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Davie girls lacrosse coaches Laura Kiricoples and Marjorie Foster are prepared to improve on their first official varsity season in 2018, when the varsity finished 8-5.

It started with a 20-11 win at South Iredell.

Davie returns eight seniors, including six with three years’ experience, to the lineup. The first season at the club level three years ago fielded several upperclassmen and a large number of freshmen. Those freshmen have matured and now form the foundation of the team. After two years as a club team, Davie became an official NCHSAA team last year.

Davie returns all-conference and leading scorer Sierra Foster, a senior at midfielder/attack. Foster, a four-time all-conference and regional tennis player as well, controls the center for the War Eagles with a scoring average of six points per game.

“Sierra has been a team leader and captain from day one of the first season, and we look forward to her final season of leadership and seeing what she can do for the team. Her ability to see the entire field and make adjustments is something that can’t be taught,” Kiricoples said.

The back attack is anchored by seniors Caitlyn Sagraves and Emery Rosenbaum. Both have played together in the back attack since their freshmen year and provide a major role with assists and scoring. Sagraves will serve as attack captain for 2019.

The defense is controlled by five seniors with starting experience. Alexis Dulin and Morgan Athey came with prior basketball experience and have managed the top and back defense for years. Dulin has committed to play lacrosse for Division-II Lees-McRae. Athey served as defensive captain last year and Dulin is defensive captain for the current season. Morgan Flores begins her third season on defense after finishing another season as all-conference in volleyball. Flores is headed to Appalachian State on a volleyball scholarship.

“We thought she was leaving Davie after the first semester, but were elated when she decided to stay and play with us. Her speed and tenaciousness is unbelievable on defense,” Foster said.

Senior Michaela Robbins is in her first varsity year after running the defense on JV last year. Robbins is a transfer as a junior and her first year in lacrosse was 2018. Senior Maggie Junker found her niche last season as goalie, earning most improved player for the season.

“We look for big things from both Maggie and sophomore Hannah Roels in the goalie position. It’s very important to have two experienced goalies in the lineup,” Kiricoples said.

Foster is joined in the midfield/attack by junior Paige Riordan and freshman Ava Rajacich. Riordan has started beside Foster the prior two seasons and brings speed and scoring to the team. As the team’s second leading scorer last year at 3.5 points per game, Riordan also performs the center draw duties for the War Eagles.

“Paige is a cross country runner and travel lacrosse player, and it shows on the field,” Foster said. “She can be tough to keep up with.  Rajacich is just a freshman but has been impressive in practice and has earned a starting role on varsity at midfielder. Ava is quick and has a nose for the ball. She also has some lacrosse experience with middle school level Winston Salem lacrosse, so that has helped. She’ll be a player for the future as she gets some varsity experience under her belt.”

Juniors Claire Smith and Katie Walton alongside sophomore Presley Jones round out the wing positions. Smith has varsity experience at backup wing, while Walton and Jones join the varsity after starting on JV last season. All three are also tasked with running the field when the midfielders need a breather. Junior Amber Herpfer is learning the defensive positions in her first year of lacrosse.

Captains for the 2019 season are Foster, Sagraves and Dulin. Kiricoples and Foster are in their fourth year as coaches of the varsity and JV.

Davie Wins Opener

Davie visited South Iredell on March 5 first its first test of the season.

The War Eagles, a 20-11 winner, came out swinging with Foster, Riordan and Rajacich controlling the offense, scoring 11 goals in the first half. Foster put up eight of the first 10 goals for Davie in an impressive display of ball handling and reading the defense. She was 8 of 9 shooting in the half. Riordan put up two goals and two assists in the half while allowing Davie to control the draw from center. Rajacich got her first varsity goal, adding an assist. Rosenbaum and Jones added to the scoring just before the half.

Davie took a halftime lead of 13-7 before coming out strong in the second half.

“The defense really stepped up in the second and held the Vikings to only four goals,” Kiricoples said. “We have an experienced defense in the five seniors back there and the midfielders of Foster, Riordan and Rajacich have to run the full field for both offense and defense. We’ve been emphasizing the importance of midfielder defense in practice, and they really stepped up to help the core defense on that end.”

The second half saw Riordan and Foster put up three more goals each and Rajacich added one to her total. Games totals saw Foster lead the way with 12 points (11 goals, one assist) on 11 of 14 shooting and eight draw controls. Riordan had 10 points (five goals, five assists), Rajacich had four points (two goals, two assists) with seven draw controls. Jones and Rosenbaum had a goal each and Sagraves had an assist. Junker, the goalie, had one save in the first half, while Roels saved four in the second.

JV Lineup

Davie’s JV is coming off a tough 2018 season partly because of how difficult it is to find schools with a JV program. The conference schools of Reagan, East and West Forsyth are about the only programs available to play. Davie has added Summit and Mt. Tabor as opponents this season.

Davie’s JV is coached by Kiricoples and Foster. The team is led by junior captain Lilli Haire and sophomore captains Haley Lyons and Lauryn Yountz. Midfielders are Lyons and freshmen Kendall Sagraves and Joie Iavaroni. Wings are sophomore Yazmin Andrade and freshmen Katy Zwanzig, Kasey Williford and Jennifer Gonzalez.  The back attacks are Haire, Lydia Pilcher, Isabel Harrelson and Brie Howell.

The defense consists of Yountz and sophomore Calista Turcios, along with freshman Stella Brown and Cecily Fishel at top defense.  The backside defense is Haley Smith, Katlin Howell, Hailee Stanley and Nia Mason. The goalie is Breck Whitt.

Loss To Summit

Davie’s JV visited Summit School in Winston Salem for its opener.

Davie was in the game during the first half with a goal by freshman midfielder Sagraves, leaving Davie behind 3-1 at the break.

Summit came out strong with its more experienced team and put up six more to win 9-2. Davie’s second goal was from midfielder Lyons. Sagraves went 1 for 3 shooting, while Lyons was 1 for 4.

The most impressive play was from freshman goalie Whitt in her first lacrosse game.

“Breck stepped up when we asked her to handle the goal position, and she has been a quick learner,” the coaches said. “She had 12 saves on 22 shots on goal, with three of those saves on 8-meter free shots. That’s impressive.”

The JV starters are Lyons, Sagraves and Iavaroni at midfielders. Wings are Andrade and Zwanzig, with Haire and Pilcher at back attack. The defense is Yountz, Turcios, Smith and Stanley, with Whitt in the goal. The next JV game is March 11 at home verses West Forsyth.