If the Westerville North High School girls club lacrosse team hopes to duplicate last year's success, it has to overcome inexperience.

If the Westerville North High School girls club lacrosse team hopes to duplicate last year's success, it has to overcome inexperience.

The Warriors set a program record for wins, but lost nine seniors, including seven starters from a team that was 16-4 overall and 5-1 in the OCC-Ohio Division.

"We have a lot of talent and a lot of athleticism," said coach Richard Case, whose team opened last Tuesday against Olentangy Liberty and plays host to Gahanna on April 8. "We're definitely inexperienced. A lot of the girls don't understand the amount of effort and work that is needed to play at this level."

Leading North are juniors Taylor Hurl and Molly Petruzzi, both of whom were first-team all-OCC selections last year.

Hurl scored 51 goals a year ago to lead the Warriors. Petruzzi was a midfielder but is moving to defense to help shore up a unit that also returns seniors Rita Finy and Kaitlyn Kropf. They'll play in front of freshman goalkeeper Kelsey Kilbane.

Hurl leads an attack that also includes senior Rachel Tooker, junior Keama Garrett, sophomore Emily Chanak and sophomore Cierra Newman. Garrett had 27 goals last year.

The midfielders are senior Madison West, junior Molly Hash and junior Megan Koleske.

Also on the defense are seniors Colleen Moore and Becca Meachan and junior Makenzie Vail.

North beat Olentangy Liberty 14-5 in the first round of the Division I-North Region tournament last year to earn its first tournament win. The season ended with a 15-11 loss to Toledo St. Ursula in the second round.

North was second in the OCC-Ohio behind New Albany (6-0) and ahead of Olentangy (3-3), Olentangy Orange (3-3), Liberty (2-4), Westerville South (1-5) and Westerville Central (0-6).

North beat South 16-2 and Central 14-2 last year.

• South was 2-12 last year, including falling to Hilliard Davidson 17-7 in the first round of the Division I-South Region tournament.

The Wildcats continue to build as a program under second-year coach Laura Bentz. Over the years, South has fielded teams with vastly different backgrounds and lacrosse experience.

The message continues to be about meshing the inexperience with experience, but Bentz has focused on raising the team's level of conditioning to make up for the gap.

"I have cracked down a little harder this season and I'm pushing the conditioning a bit more, hoping it will make a difference on the field," said Bentz, whose team opened last Tuesday against Central and played Columbus School for Girls last Wednesday. "So far I've seen a tremendous positive difference. I'm seeing a team instead of individuals trying to play lacrosse together."

Returning to lead the team are seniors Alex Beard, Kaelyn Bildsten, Sarah Escape, Caitlyn Quigley and Crystal Shilling. The Wildcats need their experience to guide a team loaded with sophomores.

Also on the team are juniors Tori Fitzmartin, Kiaya Lynn, Emily Stafa and Devin Woods. The sophomores are Devan Akers, Kinsey Clearman, Brittany Fandrey, Sallie Mackin, Brittini Padgett, Kara Patterson, Taelor Severing, Abby Sutliff, Maggie Van Keuls and Emily Walter.

Rachel Farrow, Katie Gorman, Isa Rodriguez, Teya Siva are the freshmen.

•In her second season at Central, coach Colleen McCambridge hopes an increase in comfort level leads to greater progress.

The Warhawks were 4-9 overall last year. The season ended with a 26-5 loss to Thomas Worthington in the first round of the Division I-North Region tournament.

"The team this year versus last year is in some ways like night and day," said McCambridge, whose team opened last Wednesday against South and plays CSG on Wednesday. "The players and I have gotten used to each other's expectations so the quality of practices and competition has greatly improved."

The Warhawks rely on a midfield led by senior Lindsey Peters and juniors April Tausch and Gina Son. Senior Brooke Seidenschmidt leads the attack.

The goalkeepers are senior Kahla Keegan and junior Carlie Opplinger.

The defense includes seniors Jessica Lisi, Lauren Robinson and Shannon Winks and junior Samantha Marburger.

Also on the offense are juniors Kiley Ayle and Sara Shively.

At a glance

CENTRAL

Coach: Colleen McCambridge, second season Next game: April 7 at Columbus School for Girls Key players: Lindsey Peters, Brook Seidenschmidt, Gina Son and April Tausch

NORTH

Coach: Richard Case, second season Next game: April 8 vs. Gahanna Key players: Keama Garrett, Taylor Hurl and Molly Petruzzi

SOUTH

•Coach: Laura Bentz, second season •Next game: April 12 at DeSales •Key players: Alex Beard, Kaelyn Bildsten, Sarah Escape, Caitlyn Quigley and Crystal Shilling


SCHEDULES

Central

*March 30 at Westerville South April 7 at Columbus School for Girls *April 13 vs. Olentangy *April 14 at Olentangy Liberty *April 20 at Westerville North *April 21 vs. Hilliard Bradley *April 27 at Olentangy Orange April 28 at Columbus Academy April 30 at Westerville Central May 1 at Westerville North Invitational *May 4 at New Albany May 5 at Hartley *May 11 at Pickerington

North

*March 30 vs. Olentangy Liberty April 8 vs. Gahanna April 13 at Olentangy Orange *April 15 vs. Olentangy *April 20 vs. Westerville Central April 21 vs. DeSales *April 26 vs. New Albany April 28 at Wellington May 1 at Westerville North Invitational *May 4 at Pickerington *May 5 vs. Hilliard Bradley May 7 vs. Columbus School for Girls May 8 at Watterson *May 11 at Westerville South May 12 at Columbus Academy May 14 at Upper Arlington

South

*March 30 vs. Westerville Central March 31 vs. Columbus School for Girls April 12 vs. DeSales *April 13 at Pickerington April 14 at New Albany April 17 at Thomas Worthington Tournament April 20 at Olentangy Orange April 21 vs. Bexley April 26 at Hartley *April 27 at Olentangy Liberty April 29 at Hilliard Darby May 1 at Westerville North Invitational *May 4 at Olentangy *May 8 vs. Hilliard Bradley May 10 vs. Watterson *May 11 vs. Westerville North

*OCC-Ohio game