After not making much of an impact last spring in her debut season on the Princeton Day School girls’ lacrosse team, Lucy Linville decided to do something about it.
“I didn’t play very much freshman year,” said Linville. “I worked really hard in the summer. I went to a lot of clinics and worked on it.”
She supplemented that work by training sessions with older sister and former PDS star, Cammie, now a junior standout for the Lafayette College women’s team.
“Over breaks and when she comes home, we go out and play lacrosse,” said Linville.
Last Saturday, Linville did a pretty good imitation of her older sister, tallying four goals and an assist to help PDS top George School (Pa.) 13-5.
The offensive outburst was critical for Linville and the Panthers as they were looking to bounce back from a deflating 19-5 loss at Lawrenceville two days earlier.
“We had a lot of confidence and the Lawrenceville game really shot us down,” said Linville.
“We have been working so hard in practice, especially yesterday after that loss. We needed to get back.”
In Linville’s view, the Panthers got back in the flow offensively in the win over George.
“It definitely gave me confidence,” said Linville. “I think it gave the whole team confidence because many of our goals did not come from our top scorers and there were a lot of assists.”
PDS head coach Jill Thomas came into the game with a basic message. “I told them today that our goal was one word, ‘rebound,’ and they did,” said Thomas.
The Panthers didn’t waste any time bouncing back, jumping out to a 9-1 halftime lead.
“I think we were good in transition,” said Thomas, whose team was good again last Monday as it topped Stuart Country Day 14-5 to improve to 7-6.
“There was a lot of communication; a lot of young kids stepped up today. We got out of the gate well. We didn’t even show up on Thursday but we got over it.”
Thomas likes the way Linville has been stepping up. “Lucy is figuring out how to not have those ups and downs and move forward,” added Thomas, who also got a big day in the win over George from another sophomore as Emma Quigley contributed a goal and two assists.
“She has been more consistent day-to-day-to-day. She made some nice connections on the field today. That’s good because the more people who can put the ball in the net or pass the ball or catch it down low, it only adds to our play on offense.”
The PDS defense was spearhead by the combination of freshman Kirsten Kuzmicz and junior Louise Hutter.
“Kirsten just leads by example; we have her almost playing a center field position,” said Thomas.
“With her getting those interceptions and knocking those balls down, everyone gets a little more confidence watching her. Hutter just reads it; she sees it coming and is there when the ball gets there and is there when the ground ball gets there. We count on her to be the captain of the defense. She stepped up and got more people communicating.”
Thomas is counting on her team to get better and better as it heads down the homestretch.
“We still have a lot of people who are injured and a lot of people who aren’t in game shape yet from injuries,” said Thomas, whose team plays at Princeton High on April 27.
“They are getting the idea of what it means. So if they can keep doing all the little things, I think they’ll be alright.”
In Linville’s view, things will go well for PDS if it can maintain the scoring balance it displayed in the victory over George.
“I think building more confidence and getting everybody in the offense is key,” said Linville.
“I think definitely having people who don’t normally score get in there will help us, the defense doesn’t know who to cover.”