How Syracuse Has Come Together as a Team With So Much Individual Excellence
Adam Avin | @_adamavin
CitrusTV Women’s Lacrosse Beat Reporter
At this point, if you’ve followed Syracuse Women’s Lacrosse, then you know the story.
Last year, crucial injuries led to an early postseason exit. This year, a healthier team (even without Kate Mashewske, Bianca Chevarie, and Jenny Markey), now in the midst of an undefeated, record-breaking season – is heading towards the number one seed in the ACC and NCAA tournaments.
If you’ve followed the team then you know (or if you don’t know or forgot) these players were out with injuries last year: Megan Carney, Emma Ward, Emma Tyrrell, and Sierra Cockerille. Here’s how these 4 have performed this year: Megan Carney is leading the team in goals with 48; Emma Ward ranks 7th in the country in points and 2nd in assists; Emma Tyrrell has the third most goals on the team with 38, and Sierra Cockerille has 26 points while playing defense as well. After how last season ended and this year has gone on, the impact of these returning players has been very clear and talked about a lot.
With just one more game to play this regular season, I’m using this article as an opportunity to talk about other key players, whose roles have been overlooked in helping Syracuse be the No. 1 team in the country.
Olivia Adamson played well as a freshman last season, but has taken her game to new heights this year, including becoming the primary draw specialist with Kate Mashewske out since game six. Adamson was the first person off the bench for Coach Treanor, but now plays a lot more with her time in the draw circle. Against No. 17 Clemson last week, Adamson set her career-high in points with 7 and her career-high in draw controls with 14.
Games Played – 15; Points – 34; Goals – 22; Assists – 12; Draw Controls – 48
Last season, Maddy Baxter played in all 21 games and finished with nine points. Through these 15 games, Baxter has 18 points with 16 goals, including one game-winner. Baxter also plays some defensive possessions and relieves Olivia Adamson as draw specialist as well. Baxter’s speed and tenacity has been a perfect addition to a well-oiled Syracuse machine, in all aspects of the game.
Games Played – 15; Points – 18; Goals – 16; Assists – 2; Ground Balls – 10; Caused Turnovers – 7; Draw Controls – 8
Smith is one of those players that her teammates can trust with the ball in her hands. Her coach sees that too; after starting just four games last year, she’s started all 15 so far. Smith has scored multiple goals in four games this year, including three goals in Syracuse’s clutch and historic win against No. 6 UNC. She has scored some wild goals on the run, adding extra firepower to a high-powered Syracuse offense this year. In her role as a midfielder, Smith has played some defensive possessions as well.
Games Played – 15; Points – 18; Goals – 14; Assists – 4; Ground Balls – 12; Caused Turnovers – 10; Draw Controls – 9
On an Orange team that is known for its scoring, the defense can certainly be overlooked. The Syracuse defense has helped defeat 8 ranked opponents and held them to some of their lowest scores of the season, including holding Notre Dame, Loyola, and Virginia to under double-digits. All that wouldn’t be possible, without the phenomenal play of star defender Katie Goodale. Goodale is a ball hawk and always finds herself in the right place exactly when she needs to be. She’s started every game on defense but has also played a major role as a part of the draw unit, especially since Kate Mashewske has been out. Against Cornell, Goodale auditioned for Coach Treanor to join the Attack, when she ran coast-to-coast and scored her first career goal, which had the team jumping in excitement. Most recently, Goodale was honored as a second-team midseason All-American.
Games Played – 15; Goals – 1; Ground Balls – 21; Caused Turnovers – 19; Draw Controls – 47
What’s Coming Up?
The full Syracuse crew closes out the regular season against No. 5 Boston College on Thursday, April 20 at the SU Soccer Stadium. A win would be the Orange 16th victory, which would be the longest win streak in program history and the first undefeated regular season in program history. Meaghan Tyrrell also needs just three points to become first on the all-time points scored list, passing Syracuse legend Katie Rowan.