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Expect to see 'exciting things' from girls LAX team, coach says

Left to Right: Rachel Grzanka, Emily Vimr (kneeling), Maddie Barnewold, Rose FitzCrane, Abi Hornung, Madi Eschberger, Savannah Fullmer (kneeling), Kayce Calcaterra, Claire Seely, Mandalyn Sterner, Shelby Mabry (Sitting), Tarren Leszczynski (Kneeling), Lauren Blankenburg, Maryann Stockard, Jamie Bailey (Sitting), Olivia Schassburger and Roz Schassburger. (click for larger version)
April 09, 2014 - Head Coach Tim Bausack is "expecting to see exciting things this season" from his Lady Wildcats on the Lacrosse field.

"We are working towards being better at all the things that are fun to watch as a spectator," he said.

With this being their first season with a tougher schedule, Bausack is hopeful for his team to move up in the state rankings.

"We have six 'marquee' games, as I have been calling them, and they are exciting for us. We want to be competitive in those games and we also know that to be the best we need to play against some of the best," he added. "The girls are also looking forward to playing against some of the friends they made this past off-season on their travel teams."

After graduating half of the varsity team least year, Bausack said they brought eight returnees back this season, which include: seniors Abi Hornung, Madi Eschberger, Maryann Stockard and Lauren Blankenburg, as well as juniors Claire Seely, Savannah Fullmer, Rachel Grzanka and Kayce Calcaterra.

"All of them were major contributors to the successes we had last year so the returning girls need to step up to fill those vacancies on the stat sheet, but at the same time not push themselves to put a cape on and pretend to be a player they are not," he noted. "I have seen them step up in some ways already by buying into the idea of not being 'one-dimensional.' Girls who used to only play offense or defense are excelling at both in practice."

The team is welcoming nine new players.

"They have strong athleticism and pretty good stick skills for playing lacrosse for a year or less. In our first time out this season, our goals were scored by newbies," Bausack said. "We have a ton of athletic newbies on the JV team so I expect to see a lot of competition developing within our program in the next year or two."

The strength of the team said Bausack is that they are "without an individual star."

"If we're healthy, we're sending seven or eight legitimate scoring options down the field. If one player is having a bad day or getting shut down someone else should be stepping up," he added. "I think once we settle into the game schedule and begin to leverage the depth of our roster, our athleticism will start paying dividends."

As for the league, Bausack doesn't see a lot of changes as far as competitiveness goes.

"It was a re-organizational year for the OAA with Adams moving up a division and Lake Orion moving down a division but we played both teams last year and will again this year, assuming winter goes away," he said. "I'm sure all of the OAA teams have been trying to improve just as hard as we have so we can't look past any of our league games."

In terms of goals for the season, Bausack said he doesn't have one that "hinges on a certain win-loss record or playoff result. While they've started the current season with five losses against Gross Pointe, Grand Blanc, Farmington and their most recent 11-7 loss to Rochester on April 2, Bausack his the two goals he does have on the season are still in tact.

"The first is to continue the progress this program has made in the past two seasons.

"We were in the bottom-third two seasons ago, finished last year in the middle-third, and so I would like to finish this season in the top-third of the state," he said. "My other goal is for our girls to be better people leaving the season than when they entered."

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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