After serving as an assistant coach for the Hun School girls’ lacrosse team the last two years, Haley Sanborn is enjoying a smooth transition in taking the helm of the program this spring.
“I was really excited when they asked me to step up,” said Sanborn, who is replacing Beth Loffredo after she guided the Raiders to a 5-6 record in 2012. “It is a great opportunity; it is a great group of girls.”
Sanborn is looking to provide her players with a great experience on and off the field.
“Playing at the varsity level, winning is the priority but I also want the kids to come out of the season with life lessons,” said Sanborn, whose team opens the season by hosting the Blair Academy on April 3.
“Athletics provides a lot of lessons and they can learn a lot from the experience. We want them to become better players and better people. We want to win but how we handle adversity can teach a lot. Positive affirmation is important.”
Hun should have one of the better attacks in the area, led by Boston College-bound senior star Kate Weeks together with juniors Brianna Barratt and junior Francesca Bello.
“Weeks is a great player, she is incredible,” asserted Sanborn. “She is also a great leader, she is one of our captains and she makes sure the team feels like a team. Bello and Barratt are juniors and they are both very good. The three of them play very well together. It is not just a one-person team, they feed well off of each other. In the past three years, they have learned a lot from each other.”
The Raiders feature good offensive balance with senior Maddie Schade, sophomore Erica Dwyer, and freshman twins Emma and Katie Consoli.
“Maddie Schade is another scorer; she is going to Hobart/William Smith to play lacrosse,” added Sanborn.
“Erica Dwyer is a sophomore and is a very good athlete. She is a very good attack player. Emma and Katie Consoli are twins and they are incredible athletes, they are committed to the sport.”
In the midfield, Hun boasts several good options. “We have Maura Kelly, she is very quick and has skilled stickwork,” said Sanborn, noting that Weeks, Bello, and Dwyer will also see time in the midfield. “Amanda Barbour is a sophomore. She is great on transition; she is a great runner.”
Senior Lauren Apuzzi will be running the show for the Raider defense. “Apuzzi is great as a captain; she leads by example,” said Sanborn.
“She tells people where to go and what to do back there. She is essentially the captain of the defense. She is an all-around great kid, her character and sportsmanship speak volumes. Lucy Morgan is hard core, she is a raw athlete. She always gives 110 percent and whatever the team needs, she does. Shannon Graham had an injury in the fall, she is a soccer player and she is just coming back. She is very quick and very agile. I will be happy when she is back. Taylor Nehlig and Mariesa Cay are also in the mix.”
At goalie, Sanborn is looking for sophomore Reina Kern to step up as she plays her first season of high school lacrosse after starring the last two falls in the cage for the Raider field hockey team.
“Kern has played lacrosse before, back in middle school,” said Sanborn. “She has the goalie mentality; she is a phenomenal field hockey goalie. She has a few habits from that that she needs to break; that is our biggest challenge right now. She is a hard worker and is the epitome of the scholar-athlete. She is making good progress.”
In Sanborn’s view, Hun should make a lot of progress collectively this spring.
“It is a matter of experience and jelling as a team,” said Sanborn. “We have a lot of driven athletes. They want to be out there and they have a great time together. It is a pleasure to work with them.”