It’s ironic that the best way to judge just how big the Yorktown girls’ lacrosse team’s aspirations are this season was to look at how little they celebrated their 17-5 win over Falls Church last Friday in the National District tournament finals.
The victory gave the Patriots their fourth-straight district title, a top seed in this week’s Northern Region tournament, and officially cemented their status as by far and away the district’s best. But judging from the talk after the game, districts were never really the worry and the scoreboard backed that up. The Patriots won their two tournament games by a combined 31-8 score.
Now it’s onto the regional tournament, where Yorktown (11-4 overall, 7-0 district) hopes to prove that it won’t be just another National District team to lose in the first round.
“We come from a small district, our name doesn’t get out there that much, so just to get our team out there and show them what we have because we’re a good team,” said National District Player of the Year Hope Barrazotto. “When we play together, we play so well. We’ve come close to really good teams, so I think we can do it.”
<b>THE OUTCOME</b> Friday wasn’t ever in doubt as Yorktown never trailed and broke open a tied game midway through the first half with seven unanswered goals. Much of the offensive attack came as a result of penalties taken by Falls Church as it attempted to thwart the aggressive Patriot attack.
Like they have all season long, leading the charge for Yorktown was Barrazotto (three goals, two assists) and senior Katie Hinsdale (four goals). The pair were both first-team National District selections and play together on a club team during the summer.
Last week Hinsdale signed on to play for Division II Gannon University, while Barrazotto, a junior and also the National District Player of the Year in field hockey this past fall, is still deciding whether she wants to continue her athletic career in college.
The rout Friday began when Barrazotto found a streaking Hinsdale in front of the net for the team’s fourth goal of the game, something the Yorktown coaching staff has gotten used to this year.
“They know they need each other,” said coach Robin Grunberger. “And the team needs them, so they work together very well.”
Also chipping in on offense with three goals apiece were seniors Libby Dean and Molly Adair.
“They just kept going to goal,” said Grunberger. “It wasn’t a one-man show.”
<b>BUT THE REAL DRAMA</b> begins Tuesday night, after the Connection’s deadline, when Yorktown takes on Hayfield in the first round of the Northern Region tournament. Last year was the first time since 2005 that the Patriots failed to advance in the regional tournament, and this year’s team has been hell bent on ensuring that would not become a trend.
What they’d really like is a replication of 2006, when they advanced all the way to the regional semifinals.
“I’m a senior, so this is my last year playing with these girls, so if we could keep it going, I would be really grateful,” said Hinsdale, who looked towards Barrazotto to make sure the message was loud and clear.
Against non-district opponents this year, Yorktown was just 4-4, but many of those games came at the beginning of the season. With another district title under their belt, though, judge the Patriots based off that at your own discretion.
“We are so different now, such a different team,” said Grunberger. “I think we’re capable of a lot and I think it will be a surprise to everyone else.”
Yorktown defeated Hayfield, 6-3, in first round regional action. The Patriots take on Madison Thursday night.