Loss in PIAA quarterfinals makes Quaker Valley girls lacrosse hungry for next season

Friday, June 8, 2018 | 11:00 PM

The Quaker Valley girls lacrosse team (16-7) ran out of steam in the PIAA Class AA championship tournament.

The Quakers, the WPIAL runner-up, bowed to District 3 runner-up Susquehannock, 13-8, in the quarterfinals June 2 at State College.

“Our starting 11 was able to match up, but as the game progressed, we started to get tired,” senior attacker Abby Smith said. “Because our bench is not deep, we had trouble keeping up with Susquehannock, who continually subbed three to four players.”

Senior attacker Rachel Rock said the Quakers overcame a lot of obstacles.

“We graduated a very big senior class, which meant a lot of changes,” Rock said. “That can be a very big adjustment for a team.

“We also are not a very big team. When some of our players had injuries, it had potential to throw us off course.”

Senior defender Annie Luptak said the defense played one of its best games of the season.

“Susquehannock was very fast in transition,” Luptak said. “That was difficult for us because one of our main assets is our re-defend.”

Smith said the defense, led by Luptak and juniors Olivia Lehman and Alexa Otto, carried the team throughout the year.

Otto, a goalie, had 122 saves in the regular season.

“The offense took a little longer to jell,” Smith said.

Junior midfielder Katherine Blaugrund set school records with 102 goals and 162 draw controls.

Smith, an Allegheny recruit, had a record 64 ground balls. She posted 42 goals and 82 assists and became only the third Quaker to reach 100 goals and 300 points in a career.

Freshman midfielder Gina Atwood contributed 44 goals, seven assists, 49 ground balls and 57 draw controls.

“The team worked very well together,” Quaker Valley coach Nellie Kraus said.

Blaugrund expects the loss, along with the loss to Hampton in the WPIAL final, to make the Quakers hungry next season.

“This team showed a lot of grit,” she said.

Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.


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