Herndon High girls’ lacrosse coach Lindsey Welch could not have been much more pleased than she was in the Hornets’ season-opening 13-3 home win over South Lakes on March 13.
The Hornets moved the ball well on offense and played a solid defensive game, as well, in starting their season off with a victory.
What stood out most to Welch in the win was her team’s success in moving the ball down the field and into scoring position.
"We haven’t had the strongest transition in the past," said Welch, pleased by her team’s solid passing and teamwork in moving the ball against South Lakes. "It was fun to see that happen—moving the ball through the air. Most of our scores came off of the fast break."
South Lakes opened the game’s scoring with an early goal, but Herndon came back strong and was well in control of the game at halftime with a 10-2 lead.
Coach Welch, the program’s third year head coach, said it was an overall good night of girls’ lacrosse as youth players, including those from the local Herndon-Reston Lacrosse League, were in attendance. The league is a feeder program for both high schools schools.
"[Herndon-South Lakes] is a neighborhood rivalry and we invite the youth programs to watch," said Welch, who said there was a good turnout of young players to watch the high school varsity match. "It’s fun to get the community involved in it too."
<b>The Herndon girls</b>, who finished fifth in the strong Concorde District last year, have a number of solid players this spring. One of those team members is junior midfielder Liz Mann, an All-District selection last year.
"She’s a great player for us in the midfield," said Welch, of Mann. "She is able to set up plays and she is like our quarterback."
Two other Hornet players who will play in the midfield are senior Leslie Buckingham and sophomore Jessica Singer.
"They are both very effective in transition," said Welch, of Buckingham and Singer. "Leslie is a strong player because of her game sense. Jess is probably one of the speediest midfielders. She is small, but has effective stick skills which allow her to weave in and around the defense."
Playing goalie for Herndon this spring is junior Danielle Kraner, a starter last year as a sophomore and a Second Team All-District selection.
"She’s very athletic as a goalie," said Welch. "We like to see her come in and out of the cage because of her athleticism."
And two of the team’s other key players to watch are junior midfielder Jamie Skrocki and senior defender/midfielder Lauren Binzer.
This week, Herndon was spending spring break in a suburb just outside of Denver. There, the Hornets were scheduled to play a couple of games at Cherry Creek High School. Coach Welch, who began playing lacrosse in the fifth grade, grew up in the Denver area and attended Cherry Creek High where she played lacrosse. She went on to play the sport collegiately at Virginia Tech for four years as a midfielder. Welch graduated from Tech in 2004.
Herndon left for the Denver area on Sunday and is scheduled to be back home on Thursday. Two years ago, Welch’s Herndon team spent spring break in North Carolina, and last year the Hornets traveled to South Carolina.
Welch and the Hornets have a goal of being among the top four teams in the Concorde District this season.
"To place in the top four in our district would be a great accomplishment," she said.