Lacrosse Preparing for Next Season

Photo by Holly Lipka.

The lacrosse team finished their 2016 season with a 3-13 overall record and a 0-8 State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) tally.

With the trio of wins, the Hawks tied their victory total from last season.

New Paltz finished their schedule with a 21-1 loss against No. 1 SUNY Cortland on Saturday, April 30.

This was the second nationally-ranked opponent the Hawks faced this season. The first was a conference loss against No. 11 The College at Brockport on Saturday, April 23.

Hawks head coach Liz Student said even though the season did not go as planned, the team dynamic itself was the best it has been in a while.

“It’s no secret that this season didn’t go how we all wanted it to,” she said. “We were a more skilled team this year. There was no urgency and that really hurt us.”

Individually, third-year co-captain Nicole Gottschalk led the Hawks with 29 points (23 goals, six assists) and shots (60) in 15 games played and started.

Gottschalk said there were positives throughout the season despite the losing record.

“A positive was definitely the fact that we were able to deal with adversity and maintain a positive attitude,” she said. “We learned from our mistakes and are already looking forward to next season.”

First-year midfielder Rachael Purtell netted 11 goals to lead all freshmen. In addition, she controlled a team-high 32 draws. Purtell also contributed two assists in 16 games started.

In her first year between the posts for the Hawks, third-year goalkeeper Colleen Roemer played in all 16 games. She ranked third in the SUNYAC scooping up 2.88 ground balls per game. Furthermore, she finished the season fourth in the conference with 8.50 saves per game.

Student said throughout everything, the team stayed focused.

“They kept working hard,” she said. “Through the adversity they continued to push and push and push. That is something where it is really frustrating as a team when you’re not getting the results you want and it’s a lot easier to quit than to keep pushing forward. They kept pushing forward.”

Looking ahead to next season, the team is already working to prepare. Student said the team will be the first where they have a fully-recruited team.

Previous to the start of the season, there were not any recruits in the program’s database. As a result of previous recruits graduating early and dealing with injuries, the Hawks did not have a senior class this season.

Next season, the Hawks will have recruits from every year class, Student said.

“That will be great for the program, but we will also have more competition at practice and for spots on the team, which is what you want,” she said. “You can either let it really get you down or make it motivate you and push you harder and that is the route that the team is going.”

About Melissa Kramer 157 Articles
Melissa Kramer is a fourth-year journalism major who lives for sports and music.