Friday, April 21, 2023

Windham girls’ lacrosse off to strong start in season openers

By Matt Pascarella

On a beautiful, sunny day, the Windham girls’ varsity and junior varsity lacrosse teams played their season home opener on Friday, April 14 against Yarmouth. The varsity team battled hard right up until the final buzzer, but Yarmouth got by 16-6. The JV team was neck and neck with Yarmouth for most of the game as Windham got ahead and held on to the lead to win, 4-3.

Windham junior Mallory Muse veers away from her opponent
before making a pass during Windham's varsity girls' lacrosse
home opener against Yarmouth on Friday, April 14.

Windham freshman Abby Trainor said they’ve improved on a bunch of stuff they were working on in practice. She said they did better than what they thought they were going to do during this game. She said their transition and their rides went really well. Offense set up the plays they had been working on and they really clicked – they fed the cutters really well.

Windham matched Yarmouth pretty much shot for shot in the first half.

Windham junior Mallory Muse was the first to score and Windham defense kept Yarmouth from running away with the game early on.

Trainor scored and tied the game 2-2; Muse scored again. Yarmouth jumped to a 6-3 lead, but Windham was not yet finished.

Trainor had a direct shot that went right by the goalie. She scored soon after that assisted by sophomore Grace Joly. Yarmouth led 7-5 midway through the game.

Windham moved the ball well in the second half and had several solid shots at goal. Yarmouth took a big lead.

Trainor scored once more, assisted by Muse. Yarmouth had the lead, but Windham did not give up.

“I love their effort,” said Windham varsity girls’ lacrosse coach Matt Perkins. “We got some workers, and we got some new people ... we got a bunch of kids who’ve never played varsity before, so to play against a team like this that’s projected to be in the mix with a Falmouth and Kennebunk, our kids battled.”

Perkins said the score doesn’t always reflect what went on in the game; he was pleased with their improvement. They did a really good job on defense; offensively they were patient and had better passes, they didn’t throw the ball away.

Junior Varsity

The JV team showed they were hungry for a win. Windham sophomore Talia Campobasso scored early on. Windham continued to pressure. Right before the end of the half, Windham freshman Madison Donnelly put one between the posts and Windham had a 2-0 lead at the first buzzer.

“I think we did awesome,” said Windham JV girls’ lacrosse coach Vanessa Ludka. “We started a little slow and then realized it quickly ... we really picked it up and hustled hard.”

Ludka said it was key plays that enabled Windham to get ahead of Yarmouth and hold them off. Windham looked up on offense, saw the open players and were able to execute that with good passes. Defensively, they have a backer system that everyone was in and went very well.

In the second half, Yarmouth’s aggressiveness got them an early goal. Windham fought hard with shots at goal and communication. Yarmouth tied the game 2-2.

Windham went hard after the ball. Yarmouth took the lead, then Windham freshman Olivia McPherson fired the ball past the goalie and tied the game 3-3.

Strong passing and defense helped Windham take the lead. Windham junior Ella Lombard went around the net and scored.

With seconds left in the game, Windham prevented Yarmouth from any further scoring opportunities.

“We did really good at passing and getting open when we needed to and not just forcing it to the net,” said Lombard.

Lombard said they earned the win by everybody working as a team and getting a chance to participate. <

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