(Courtesy of MaxLaxOC)
March 17, San Juan Capistrano – A beautiful St. Patrick’s Day brought an exciting, seesaw battle between two top Orange County girls’ lacrosse teams. Beckman entered the day looking to turn the tide after a close, one-goal loss to a strong Santa Margarita, and San Juan Hills was looking to continue its winning ways after two straight victories—one of which was a one-goal nail-biter against San Clemente.
The Stallions came strong out of the gate, building an early 5-1 lead, due in part to dominance on the draw behind senior Bridget Cain. On their first possession after claiming the opening draw, senior middie Taylor Austin made a quick feed to sophomore attacker Lucy Hodge, who cut from behind and received for the point-blank shot.
Minutes later, Jacy Fischbeck scooped a rebound after a nice save from Beckman’s Maddy Wolf and made good on the second chance opportunity. Beckman answered when senior Carly Tobias lit up the cage with a free position shot from the center hash. The next five minutes was all San Juan Hills, as Cain unleashed a rocket on an unsettled play, senior Mandy Muhr converted a free position, and junior Nicole Strauch took the feed from a driving Cain and pocketed the shot before the slide could shut her down.
With an immediate response from the ensuing draw, Tobias ripped a wicked left-hand shot through traffic to bring the Patriots within three. The rest of the half belonged to Beckman. Junior Lauren Frank finished a feed from senior Samantha Bui who was under defensive pressure on a tough pass. The home team slowed down the ball, played patient lacrosse and found good scoring opportunities, while Wolf made a few strong saves to keep her team within two. After back-and-forth turnovers, Tobias scooped and drove through the unsettled defense to make it a one-goal game. Senior Taylor Stern made her presence felt by tying the game with a free position shot.
With the game now knotted at 5-5 and 6:18 until the half, Beckman kept it going. Stern drove, pulled away from pressure, and re-attacked with a strong shot and goal—prompting a Stallion timeout. But the pause in action was to no avail, as Stern netted her third straight off a great feed from senior attacker Nidhi Satyadev. Moments later, Stern followed with a fourth. In the last minute of the half, Muhr snapped the Stallion dry spell to make it 8-6, which was the score at the half.
The second half was a classic boat race, with each team going on short runs interspersed with back-and-forth goals.
Muhr opened the scoring with a high bouncer off the free position, and the home team was knocking on the door, down by one. Moments later, Hodge lined up for the free position, drew the defense, and dumped the ball to a wide-open Muir on the goal circle—and just like that, the game was tied at eight.
On the following Patriot possession, Tobias drove on her strong hand and cranked a shot against the grain to net the top-shelf goal. After each team took a trip in the offensive end, San Juan Hills responded after a nifty draw and dump from a creative Cain to Austin. Game tied at nine.
Beckman scored on their following possession with a stick-skill showcase: Stern from the top to Satyadev down low to the cutting Tobias in the 8M for the shot and goal. From here, the visitors went on a run, with Tobias shooting an awkward-yet-strong right-handed free position and senior attacker Layne Takahashi driving through light pressure to unleash a running lefty shot high.
12-9, Beckman, with 14:02 to go.
Cain brought her team back by attacking with a strong drive off a free position for San Juan Hills, and Beckman kept the lead at three when Tobias beat the double team by dropping the stick and firing the sidearm ripper.
The home team then mounted a run of its own. Hodge earned a free position with a strong reception in the 8M and hit the shot, off-stick high. Austin followed with a hard, low free position of her own. Less than a minute later, Fischbeck tied the game with 7:39 to go in the game.
The final set of the match was a defensive showcase, as the scoreboard read 13-13 at the end of regulation. Beckman earned two consecutive yellow cards but killed them both without any damage. The visiting Patriots, after a key save from Wolf, played the clock for the final shot, but the Stallions held strong on defense, gave no ground, and prevented any offensive penetration.
In overtime, each team had its chances. In a dramatic moment, Wolf saved a low, hard cannonball from Cain, but stepped out and back into her crease to give the ball back to San Jan Hills. Austin had a nice chance on a feed and drive, but the shot went wide on the late defensive check. With twenty seconds left to go, Beckman made a sweet defensive interception and pushed hard to the fast break, but the Stallion defense kept them out of the 8M to force a second overtime period.
San Juan Hills scooped the opening draw of the second overtime and Austin went straight to the drive and fired a left-handed shot that beat Wolf but caught the near pipe and rebounded to the restraining line. Beckman junior Abby Williams shoveled the ground ball and pushed the action into the opposing zone, moved the ball behind to Frank, who found Tobias on the slow break for the shot, goal, and overtime victory for the Beckman Patriots.
Beckman Defender, Lizzy Burnett has been selected to the US Lacrosse - Orange County National High School Tournament Team. She, along with 21 other Orange County High School players will travel to Stony Brook University in New York this May to represent Orange County in the tournament. Lizzy will also have the opportunity to attend the NCAA Woman's Lacrosse semi-final, and Championship games.
Lizzy was selected by Coach Tim to represent Beckman High School at this year's National Team Try-outs. Coach Hick (National Team Coach) said, "Last year we were fortunate enough to win our bracket, and therefore, will be playing in a more competitive bracket this year." We hope to have the same success this year and I know we have the talent here in Orange County.
Congratulations to Lizzy!
After one full week of play, Esperanza was the big mover and shaker in the girls’ lacrosse coaches poll. The Aztecs moved all the way from No. 18 to No. 13 after defeating two higher ranked opponents in the first week of play.
Aliso Niguel fell to the Aztecs first, by a score of 8-7. Two nights later Esperanza defeated Los Al 5-4 in another low-scoring, one-goal game showing that the Aztecs may be for real this season.
Further up the ladder, Mater Dei, Foothill, and St. Margaret’s maintained their positions as the Top 3 teams in Orange County. Despite playing only one game, Santa Margarita moved up to No. 4 from No. 7. Trabuco Hills rounded out the Top 5..
(Courtesy of MaxLaxOC)
Beckman girls’ lacrosse head coach Tim Duchene announced that junior Carly Tobias, and seniors Taylor Stern, Layne Takahash, and Molly Allen were named captains of the 2018 Patriots.
“All four of our captains are gifted lacrosse players and scholar-athletes,” Duchene said by email. “They have unique skill sets and personalities that complement each other and bring out the best in themselves and their teammates.”
Tobias (left above), a junior midfielder, is a three-year varsity player. She played for the OC National Tournament Teams as a freshman and sophomore. She was first-team Pacific Coast All-League in 2016 and 2017 and is committed to play at D2 Lindenwood University in St. Louis. “Carly is tireless and works diligently to continually improve,” Duchene said.
Stern, a returning captain, is a senior midfielder and a four-year varsity player. She scored 100 points last year while earning first-team All PCL honors for the second consecutive year. She was a member of the 2016 Orange County National Team. Stern is committed to play at San Diego State University next year. “Taylor is a competent and confident player with natural ability and a drive to excel,” Duchene said.
Takahash is a senior attacker and three-year varsity player as well as a scholar-athlete throughout high school. “We have the utmost confidence in Layne, with her keen offensive insight, and are truly excited to see her thrive in her new role as co-captain!” said Duchene.
Allen, a senior defender, is a second-year captain and three-year varsity player. She was first-team All PCL and first-team All-County in 2017. “We rely heavily on her defensive presence and continue to expect great things from her this season!” said Duchene.
Tom grew up in Upstate NY playing ice hockey and eventually box Lacrosse. He has an engineering degree from SUNY Buffalo and an MBA from Syracuse. In his day job, he’s a real estate developer with projects around the country, and president of a frozen foods company in KC. Toms been coaching women’s lacrosse in OC for 15 years, at Pioneer, Beckman, Sage Hill and CdM before returning to Beckman this season. He’s also coached TeamOC, OCStarz, XTeam and the OC/LA team at the Women’s National Tournament. Currently, Tom is senior women’s game trainer with the national staff of the US Lacrosse Coach Development Program, training coaches nationwide during the off season. Tom and Barb raised a grow son and daughter through Pioneer, Beckman and NCAA lacrosse programs and both are now successful professionals. After five years of finding it difficult to get excited about the other teams Tom has coached, Barb is thrilled to be returning to the Beckman parents sidelines and booster club activities for every game in 2018.
(Courtesy of MaxLax)
With the season ready to begin in less than a week, it is time to begin the 2018 girls’ lacrosse pre-season Top 20 countdown. A total of 12 coaches responded to the MaxLaxOC survey and here are the results for Nos. 11 – 20. 2017 records are shown in parentheses.
(Courtesy of MaxLax)
A total of 111 girls’ lacrosse players were placed on the US Lacrosse Orange County Chapter (USL-OC) Preseason All-County Watch List. The list includes three players who were named to the 2017 All-County First Team: Beckman senior Molly Allen (pictured, left), St. Margaret’s senior Cailin Young (pictured, center) and Trabuco Hills junior Hennessey Evans (pictured, right).
“Our goal with the preseason watch list is to highlight players to watch this season that could likely be candidates for All-County,” girl’s lacrosse chair Lauren Ciccomascolo said by email.
Evaluations will continue during the season as coaches will be asked to evaluate potential All-County players on the opposing team via a google form. These forms will be due to USL-OC each Sunday evening. A girl’s lacrosse Player of the Week will be selected from each week’s nominations and announced on MaxLaxOC.com. If a coach does not complete the form, their players will not be eligible for player of the week honors.
“Our ultimate goal is to have an evidence folder of names at the end of the year so that when we are deciding All-County we can ensure that all the girls deserving of this status are appropriately honored,” Ciccomascolo added.
Mandi Willis grew up in Irvine, California attending Irvine High School. She played on the Varsity Lacrosse team all four years and served as captain her junior and senior seasons. Mandi was named midfield MVP all four years and earned All-League award all four year. Mandi also played soccer for the varsity soccer team for three years and served as captain her senior season. She earned first team all-league and offensive MVP award her senior season. Mandi went on to play soccer at Santiago Canyon under coach Ian Woodhead from 2013-2015. Both years she made it to the state championships taking second place. In 2015, her team went undefeated in league. She earned Most Improved and Most Inspirational awards that season. After attending Santiago Canyon, Mandi went on to play soccer at Providence Christian College. She served as captain for the season she played.
After leaving Providence, Mandi started coaching for Victory Lacrosse where she continues to serve. Mandi is also the head coach for the CSULB Division 2 club lacrosse team.
Mandi is currently taking classes at Orange Coast College, studying kinesiology. She plans to transfer to Cal State Fullerton to continue her education. She aspires to be a physical therapist.
VARSITY PHOTO SHOOT – SAVE THE DATE
When: Saturday, April 22nd
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Where: Crystal Cove
What to wear: The girls will be wearing white summer dresses, as well as their red jerseys and jeans. Please also bring your Letterman’s Jacket if you have one and your lacrosse stick.
More details to follow.