March 2, 2010

2010 Lacrosse Preview

Any coach will you tell you that if you can get a team to work hard and challenge itself to be better, there isn't much more you can ask of them. Bloomsburg University lacrosse coach Leah Carr has just a team in 2010.

"The team has been working extremely hard and has applied themselves in the off-season," said Carr, the 2009 PSAC East Coach of the Year. "They challenged themselves to be better players than last year and I think all that hard work will payoff for them with the goal of winning a PSAC title and earning an NCAA playoff bid."

The key offensive players this season will be led by 2009 PSAC East Freshmen of the Year Samantha King, Tia Mazzie, Kim Springman , Allie Kakareka and freshman Sam Mazzie. King was third on the Huskies in scoring last year with 41 goals and five assists for 46 points. Mazzie totaled 40 points on 32 goals and eight assists, while Springman led the Huskies in scoring with 52 points, 28 goals and a team-high 24 assists. Kakareka also had a big freshman year for the Huskies with 31 goals and eight assists.

"I am excited for our attack this year," Carr continued. "This group of players is probably the best attack unit we have had in the last four years as far as what they can accomplish on the field."

Additional attack players include Kelsey Schwan, Ruth Costanzo, Kelsey Paulsen, and Kelsey Metzler.

Bloomsburg's midfield has great speed, agility, and game sense, and will be expected to join the attack and defense as threats. Freshmen Maggie Canavan, Natalie Draham, Monica Novielli, Sarah Bennett, Lyndsey Babilon , and Gabby Lochetto will be members of the midfield unit, providing depth and speed to an already solid roster. Key returning midfield players Tia Mazzie, Lindsey Kupferschmidt.

The Huskies defense will be led by Ashley Bowers , Rebecca Belmonte, Courtney Martin, Amber Shifflett, Deanna Hauser and freshmen goalkeeper Selby Iezzi.

"We lost Andrea Schweitzer to graduation, and she was a dynamic player and will be tough shoes to fill," said Carr. "That being said, it is easier to replace one player than an entire unit. We do bring back the rest of our defense with experience and speed."

"Ashley Bowers, a three-year starter, has a lot experience which makes her tough," said Carr. "And while some people might overlook Rebecca Belmonte, what she does on the field on a consistent basis is very impressive. The goalkeeper position is unforgiving because if you have a bad day it can be glaring. I believe that Shelby's hard work in practice created the consistency that she displayed this preseason. Fellow freshmen Devyn Mulholland will also be expected to spend some time in cage as well."

Carr knows the PSAC is always tough, led by two perennial powers."We respect all the teams in the PSAC, which has good teams from top to bottom," Carr said. "However, our main opposition will come from Lock Haven and West Chester. We believe the hard work that the players did during the off-season will make us more competitive against those teams."