May 16, 2012 - The gray ribbons in the hair of each Lady Wolf portrayed their thoughts as they headed into their game against Rochester Adams on Saturday afternoon.
Anna Gray blocks Rochester Adams from crossing into Clarkston territory. Photo by Wendi Reardon (click for larger version)
They wore the ribbons for Ryan Kennedy, a fourth grader at North Sashabaw Elementary with brain cancer. They were focused in their goal to win the game for him.
They did as they took the Lady Highlanders by storm to win 17-6 during the annual Game for a Cure event.
"I am sure it would mean a lot to him," said junior Lauren Sharkey. "The gray represents Ryan."
"The girls told me about Ryan," added Clarkston Girls Varsity Lacrosse Head Coach Stephanie Dellinger. "The win was for him and his family."
With their mission in mind Sharkey led the attack scoring three goals the first four minutes of the game.
"That is what she does," Dellinger added. "We rely on Steph (Dellinger) to draw possession and move the ball down the field. Lauren is quick and has great speed. They work in tandem to get the ball down the field."
Clarkston kept the pace going with a team effort to score eight more goals before the first half closed. The Lady Highlanders only got one goal in during the first half putting the score, 11-1.
"We came out really strong and played really hard," Sharkey added. "We worked on the ball and pushed. We didn't give up."
Sharkey scored another goal only seconds after Dellinger grabbed the ball from faceoff to open the second half.
Junior Madeline Maguire scored 45 seconds later keeping a wide distance on the scoreboard.
The girls kept Adams to five goals in the last half as they scored four more.
"It was a good win for us," coach added. "We only let in six goals today which is really great. We played great defense. We have had a couple of rainouts we were expecting to win. We had good ball movement. It was good for confidence for the girls before going into regionals."
Sharkey led with six goals. Dellinger, Maguire, Mary Schlaff and Lindsey Pike added two goals each against the Lady Highlanders.
The Lady Wolves also beat Lake Orion on Wednesday, 24-12. Dellinger led with seven goals and Sharkey added six goals.
"The first half was slow," coach admitted. "The officials weren't what we were expecting and took us a little bit out of our game. The second half we got it together and didn't look back. We just refocused on how we know how to play and win and we got it done."
The girls played Troy on Tuesday and their next game is next Thursday when they take on Waterford Kettering for the first round of MHSAA Regional playoffs, 7 p.m. in Lake Orion.
"We just have to bring it again really hard," Sharkey added. "We have to play every game for Ryan and get a win."
Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.