03/20/10 — Eastern Wayne lacrosse team continues learning curve

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Eastern Wayne lacrosse team continues learning curve

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on March 20, 2010 11:06 PM

Another learning experience.

A team that continues to make strides during its inaugural varsity campaign, the Eastern Wayne girls' lacrosse squad suffered a 17-1 loss to Wilmington Hoggard at Little Big Horn on Friday afternoon.

Senior Erin Fowler logged a natural hat trick (three consecutive goals) in the first 21/2 minutes, sparking the seasoned Vikings to their fourth victory in five outings this spring.

"Every one of these games, since we're so new to the sport, they learn a tremendous amount," said Warriors head coach Bill Thomas. "They're getting better and better, and by April, I'd say we're going to be very competitive."

Hoggard reeled off 30 shots in the 50-minute affair and seized a 16-2 advantage in draws (also called face-offs in boys' lacrosse). Eastern Wayne turned over several possessions and scored its lone goal with nearly two minutes left in regulation.

Warriors keeper Trinity Christopher notched eight saves.

"It's hard because as a goalie, you feel like you let the team down ... absolutely not," said Thomas. "Goalies do not lose games for you. It's the rest of the team out there (in front). Goalies win games for you."

Fowler, who signed with Division III Catholic (D.C.) University, needed just 96 seconds to put the Vikings on top. Her next two goals came within 13 seconds apart on assists from MacKenzie Schmidt and Sarah McCullough.

Fowler finished with six goals and two assists on the day.

"She's been our leading scorer for all four seasons," said Hoggard coach Erin Redmond. "She's someone who has definitely put time and effort into her game. She probably could have showcased herself a little more (today), but she's unselfish and looks to get her teammates more involved into the offense."

Once Hoggard grabbed command of the match, it went into its motion offense and looked for open gaps to the goal. The Vikings created one-on-one opportunities on several occasions and entered halftime with a 12-0 advantage.

Overall, nine Vikings scored at least one goal.

"I tell the girls that whenever a goal goes in, that's in the past and the next time the whistle blows, don't dwell on anything else and just learn from everything," said Thomas. "I think the girls' spirits are still pretty high."

Eastern Wayne (0-4) entertains New Bern on Tuesday. Game time is 5:30 p.m.