North girls try to find groove
The Westerville North High School girls lacrosse team's potential was on display in the first half of its OCC-Central Division game against Delaware on April 18.
The Warriors showed their inconsistency in the second half, as they took an 11-3 lead into halftime only to hold on for a 15-12 win.
"This is the story of our season. We just make too many mistakes," coach Chip Walston said. "We have some freshmen out there playing on varsity. We make great plays and we get it halfway down the field, then we turn it over. That's pretty much the story of our season so far."
Delaware scored six consecutive goals to close within 13-11 with 6 minutes, 33 seconds remaining, but sophomore midfielder Teresa Chatel ended the Pacers' run by scoring with 4:22 left.
North won its first two games but lost its next four before ending its losing streak with the win over the Pacers.
"The last four games were frustrating, so it was nice to play a team that is at our level and have some fun out there," Walston said. "It's no fun to get beat up."
North has played most of the season without senior attacker Katy Williams, who suffered a concussion in an 8-6 win over Big Walnut in the season opener April 4. She is close to returning to the lineup, Walston said.
Last season, Williams had a team-high 47 goals and was named first-team all-league and second-team all-region.
The Warriors have gotten balanced scoring during Williams' absence. Senior attacker Caitlyn Moreland had five goals against Delaware and led the team with 10 goals through nine games.
"We'll be much better later in the season. We'll improve a lot," Moreland said. "We have a lot of spirit and pride. We have good talent. We just have to keep each other motivated and we'll improve a lot."
Chatel and senior attacker Megan Koleske each had six goals through nine games, followed by senior attacker Tori Smith and sophomore attacker Megan Boso with five apiece and senior midfielder Tricia Gerber with four.
Against Delaware, Chatel had three goals and Boso scored two.
Sophomore goalkeeper Sarina Tran had seven saves against the Pacers and had 58 saves through nine games.
Walston also lauded the play of freshmen midfielders Michala Adelman, Macey Fuller and Madi Gauthier and freshman attacker Payton Hurl.
"The girls keep trying," Walston said. "I keep forgetting that most of these girls haven't played for many years. They're going to make mistakes. It's just frustrating when they make great plays, they bring it down and then they have a turnover. Turnovers have been our big problem, but the girls keep fighting to the end."
North will play host to Westerville South on Thursday, April 25, in an OCC-Central Division game.
The Warriors lost to the Wildcats 11-6 last season.
Central girls coach likes team's progress
Central girls coach Rachel Tooker has seen marked improvement by her team since last season, when it finished 5-12.
The Warhawks were 2-4-1 overall before playing Marys-ville on April 23 and are 2-2 in the OCC-Central.
"I am unbelievably proud of the progress (the players) have made since last year, especially after our game against Pickerington North (on April 11)," Tooker said. "Although we lost 20-15, it was a major improvement over the loss last year, 19-4. They are really meshing as a team and trusting each other, which is allowing them to use each of their skills to their highest potential. We have some really great athletes and leaders on our team and they all make me so proud every day."
Through seven games, senior midfielder Kelsie Malloy had a team-high 25 goals, followed by junior attacker Rachel Schroeder with 17 and junior attacker Brady Walston with nine.
Junior goalie Sam Abrahamsen had 34 saves through seven games.
South girls meeting coach's expectations
The South girls team entered the week 4-5 overall and 1-1 in the OCC-Central.
The Wildcats lost to Wellington 11-10 in overtime April 11. Junior midfielders McKenna Davis and Victoria Husain both had three goals and sophomore attacker Tiffany Schafer scored two.
Senior goalie Isa Rodriguez had 24 saves against the Jaguars.
"Our team is performing how I expected them to at this point in the season," coach Allison Neff said. "Losing to Wellington in overtime was a hard defeat for our team, but it made us stronger and more motivated to take on the second half of the season. We've really come together as a unit on and off the field."
Through nine games, Husain had a team-high 27 goals, followed by Davis with 16 and junior midfielder Kieran Arens with 15.
Rodriguez had 125 saves through nine games.