The No. 3-seeded Girls Varsity Lacrosse team faced No. 6 Cheshire Academy in the Western New England Prep School Lacrosse Association (WNEPSLA) Class B quarterfinal match-up on Friday afternoon. The Bears battled throughout and kept their opponent in check thanks to a great game in goal by Emma Birmingham ’21. “We have two goalies, but Caroline [Mezias ’21] was injured last week, so Emma has really had to step up. She made 12 saves today, which is huge,” said Head Coach Katherine Simmons.
The Bears trailed by one with under a minute to play when Elizabeth Bernstein ’19 scored the tying goal, sending the game into sudden overtime. Callie Drake ’20, who leads the team in scoring with 67 goals, buried a free position shot—her seventh goal of the game—to clinch the win 11-10.
“We are all heart and all hustle,” said Simmons. “We've also been waiting for a chance to test our mental toughness all season, so I think it was a culmination of a lot of factors that led to our success today.”
The Bears, who finished 5-2 in league play, are led by captains Ruby Merritt ’19, Elsie Harrington ’19, and Kate Whitman ’19. “All three have been on the team for three years and always keep us positive and energized,” Simmons said.
The team will face No. 2 seed Williston Northampton on Williston’s home turf on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. in the semifinal game. The Bears are looking to avenge an early season loss to the Wildcats.
“I think we have grown a lot as a team,” Coach Simmons added. “Gaining and keeping possession is going to be key. This will be our fourth game this week, so we will need to manage the clock and our energy well. Keeping it simple, keeping up our communication, and working together will be essential for our success.”