Freshman Sam Smith had an immediate impact in her first season on varsity lacrosse, helping the girls’ team to a 5-3 MCAL start (as of May 7). “I was really nervous my first game, I remember I was about to take the draw and I was just freaking out and shaking,” she said.
Smith started lacrosse five years ago as a fifth grader, pushed forward by her father, who played lacrosse in high school and was an All-American at University of Virginia. “I just got into it really easily and understood the sport well,” she said. “It just kinda clicked with me [and it] made sense.”
Smith is one of five freshmen on the girls’ varsity lacrosse team this year. The transition to playing at the high school level has been smooth for the freshmen. “Sam Smith and Maggie Griffis are two new freshmen, and they are already two of our best players,” said senior and teammate Emily Pavis. “They are extremely talented and have a passion for lacrosse that made the transition from youth to varsity extremely easy.”
Playing with older and more experienced players is less of a disadvantage for Smith and more of an opportunity to improve. “I’ve always liked challenging myself to play with more experienced players,” she said. “Getting to learn from them is really nice and what they teach you is really valuable.”
Even in her first year on the team, it is evident that Smith puts the team first. “Not letting my team down is a huge [motivator] because losing is just so hard on the whole team,” she said.
Smith has quickly become a leader on the team setting the tone for her teammates with hard work. “As a freshman, she is already a team leader by setting an example for how much effort each player on the team should be putting in,” Pavis said. “She’s devoted to the sport and leads by example.”
Smith looks up to team captain and senior Raven Twilling as a role model. “She’s only been playing for four years but she’s a captain on the team and she’s really involved,” she said. “She’s a really good motivator and she just brings up the energy and intensity of our team.”
According to Smith, the program is on the rise thanks to incoming students during the next few years. “I know some good lacrosse players that will be coming in in the next few years, so I’m excited.”