After the Washington Township High School girls’ lacrosse team lost to defending state champion Lenape on Saturday, leading scorer Allie Gorman was asked when they played the Indians again.
Gorman politely said she “could look it up.”
As much as Gorman and her teammates want another shot at top-ranked Lenapeagain after the early-season 15-3 loss, they truly are treating every game as a measuring stick. One game – not even a rematch against the Indians – is larger than any other.
After consecutive losing seasons, Washington Township is treating its next game as the biggest game on the schedule.
“We are taking all the positives we can out of this game,” senior Jillian Calandra said. “As the season goes on, I hope we rebuild to where we were a few seasons ago.”
Calandra, who plays attack, is indeed looking forward. She was a freshman on the program’s last winning team. Washington Township went 6-11 last season and 7-11 in 2013.
“I feel very positive,” Calandra added. “We have really good chemistry. We are working hard at practice.”
The Minutemaids’ last winning season was 2012, finishing 13-6. The previous two seasons, they won 17 and 18 games.
Washington Township’s past success included 19 wins in 2006 and 18 victories in 2005. So the last two losing seasons sure seem like an aberration when looking at the history of the program.
“We had those great seasons and we don’t like to be overlooked now because we have so much talent on this team,” Ilyssa Liberto said.
Despite losing in the first round of the South Jersey Group 4 tournament last year, the returning talent is certainly respected since veteran coach Sandy Stockl’s team came into the season No. 9 in the Top 15.
“We have a lot of talent, we are all athletic, we all love each other. I think we have what it takes,” Calandra said. “We all love the sport.”
Liberto, a sophomore midfielder, agreed with Calandra, saying they are passionate about playing for Washington Township.
Iin addition to their will to win, the Minutemaids warrant optimism this season because of Gorman’s ability to put the ball in the back of the net. Th junior midfielder, scored 26 goals last spring.
“It is not just one person on the field, it is all 12 of us,” Gorman said. “You definitely see it on the field this year because everything is so positive and we have an athletic team. It is just so much fun to be out here with your best friends.”
Gorman tallied four goals in the opener, an impressive 11-7 win over Cherry Hill East. She posted two more goals against Lenape.
“I have confidence in my teammates. I set them up and they will set me up,” Gorman said. “I have confidence in whoever is on the field. I don’t feel like I am the only one who can score.”
Gorman isn’t just a scorer who shoots often.
“Coming up as a freshman, she always had my back with everything and everywhere on the field,” Liberto said about Gorman. “I always look for her and we feed off each other. She helps me score and I help her score.
“We feed off each other’s success.”
They know success this season will be measured one game at a time, beginning Monday against West Deptford.
Reach Kevin Callahan at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @CP_KCallahan