T.C. Williams head coach Don West praised sophomore Allegra Benites’ speed.
Photo by Craig Sterbutzel.
Burke The T.C. Williams girls’ lacrosse team showed some fight in the second half of its Patriot District opener against Lake Braddock, starting the final 25 minutes with a 4-0 run. By that point, however, the Bruins had already proven to be the superior squad on its way to victory.
Lake Braddock built a 10-0 lead and cruised to a 15-6 win on its home field. For a T.C. Williams program led by its third head coach in four seasons, the loss was its sixth in a row in what figures to be a bumpy rebuilding campaign.
Don West is in his first year as head coach of the Titans. He spent 15 seasons as head coach at Lake Braddock, winning three district titles from 1991-2005, and last year was the junior varsity coach at McLean. West said his goal for the 2012 season is to "lay a foundation" for a successful program, which includes getting players interested in offseason lacrosse. The program has many young athletes, including nine freshmen and sophomores on the varsity and eight eighth-graders on the JV.
"[We need to] change the culture of high school lacrosse over there to something that is desired," West said. "... It’s going to take a couple years, but I’m willing to hang in there."
"[We need to] change the culture of high school lacrosse over there to something that is desired. ... It’s going to take a couple years, but I’m willing to hang in there."
— T.C. Williams girls’ lacrosse coach Don West
TC opened its season with wins against Mount Vernon and Edison, but has struggled since. After putting up 17 goals in each of its first two games, the Titans failed to reach double digits in their following six contests.
"We don’t have the two or three powerhouse girls," West said, "that can go to the goal at will."
Three players scored for the Titans on Monday. Senior midfielder Tiana Barlow led the way with three goals, sophomore Allegra Benites added two and sophomore midfielder Megan Gallagher added one.
West praised Benites’ athleticism.
"Allegra has got really fast feet," he said. "If I was to have anyone go one-on-one, it would be Allegra Benites."
TC will travel to face West Springfield on April 13. The Titans’ next home game is April 17 against Woodson.
With the loss to Lake Braddock, the TC program fell to 11-22 since posting 10 wins during the 2009 season. For now, all the Titans can do is work to get better.
"It is a process that we’re doing," West said. "These girls really just need to want to win and want to play and do well."