"Man Down" Lacrosse Team Battles On
With a “man down” and no substitutes, Lee University’s lacrosse team picked themselves up from the 9-17 loss of their first game against Erskine College on Feb. 11 with more games to come.
The team has only 12 players, leaving the bench barren as the athletes are forced to play without Katelyn Burkett, a freshman with a foot injury that has kept her off of the field.
“We played better than, I think, anyone really expected,” Coach Wadley said. “9-17 is not a bad score for a first game, by any means.”
Because of the program’s quick start, there was not much time to recruit.
While the whole team felt the effect of playing “man down,” four of the athletes competed with injuries, including freshman Jayne Renfro who had stress fractures in her shins.
Similarly, freshman Adriana DeVita wears a brace for a recovering ACL injury, and freshman Abby Fortner has problems in her feet and shoulder. Freshman Rachel Duda, who scored the first goal of the game, played on a sprained ankle.
According to Duda, the opposing team was very rough, which caused most of the Lady Flames’ injuries during the game. One player on Erskine’s team received a yellow card after striking Junior Hannah Rotello’s arm with her stick and drawing blood. Rotello, one of the team’s captains, scored two points.
Junior Brianne Schapira scored three points, freshman Madeline Perrigo scored twice, and Jayne Renfro scored the Lady Flames' final point.
“We’re all kinds of beaten up right now, but we’re pushing through,” Said Duda. “We’re helping each other get through this. It is fun, though. We are like a family.”
The team knew they would be playing man down after the holiday break and mentally prepared themselves. Focusing on fitness and endurance is critical to get through games with no substitutes while the competition has fresh legs every play.
“I don’t think the score reflected how we played,” freshman Hannah Lee said. “We really realized that playing smarter and playing harder is going to be crucial.”
Coach Wadley explained that this team is the foundation of lacrosse at Lee and will set the standard for the teams to come.
“The biggest goal we have this year is we want to create a team environment and a team community that is going to be great going forward,” Coach Wadley said.