Things started out well for the Hun School girls’ lacrosse team last week.
Playing in the opening round of the state Prep A tournament on April 29, fourth-seeded Hun edged No. 5 Blair 19-18 as senior star and Boston College-bound Kate Weeks scored 10 goals.
Three days later, the Raiders topped Pennington 19-15 with Weeks scoring eight goals and classmate Maddie Schade chipping in six.
But the week ended on a down note last Friday as ninth-seeded Hun fell 26-15 to No. 8 Robbinsville in the opening round of the Mercer County Tournament.
While Hun head coach Haley Sanborn had hoped for a different result, she had no qualms with the effort she got from her players in defeat.
“It wasn’t one of our best games,” said Sanborn. “We played them in our first scrimmage. We are a different team now and they are too. I am not disappointed; I think we played well. We knew coming in that the Mercer County Tournament was going to be tough to begin with but I am proud of them. They all worked hard.”
The Raiders worked hard to the final whistle, outscoring Robbinsville 4-2 over the last six minutes of the contest.
“Kate Weeks did keep pressing forward,” said Sanborn, who got eight goals from Weeks in the loss with Brianna Barratt adding three.
“Schade and Barratt played well. Lauren Apuzzi was great on defense. Amanda Barbour is always a consistent defender for us. Fresca [Francesca Bello] has been having good games for us. Katie Consoli played excellent.”
On Monday, the Raiders played well but came up short again as they fell 16-4 at top-seeded Oak Knoll in the Prep A semis.
In Sanborn’s view, the losses have taught Hun some important lessons. “They have got to use each other; they can’t just rely on running up the field on their own,” said Sanborn, whose team moved to 5-8 with the loss to Oak Knoll and will look to get back on the winning track when it hosts Hamilton on May 8 in an MCT consolation game and then plays at the Academy of Notre Dame (Pa.) on May 10.
“The defense needs to be a little tighter. We need to mark better man-to-man. We just need to be on the same page.”
Sanborn and her players have developed a tight bond this spring. “They are awesome kids; I can’t say enough good things about them,” said Sanborn.
“They encourage each other, they support each other. They are just genuinely good kids. It is a dream for me. Obviously we want to win but I think the camaraderie is great. As a coach, I learn from them as well. It is a wonderful situation so regardless of what happens, the season has been successful.”