By Jeremy McDonald
KEIZER, Ore.– Last year was a growing year for the McNary Girls Lacrosse program as many of the girls picked up some valuable experience playing the sport during the Spring. Being the only Girls Lacrosse program in Salem, the Celtics welcomed in girls from around the district to join them, and it paid off last season as they went 6-7 and reached the postseason with McNary returning nine from that squad entering this season.
“It really taught them…while Girls Lacrosse is a non-contact sport, there’s a lot of aggression and not necessarily physical aggression, but there’s a lot of that play and fight for the ball, that fight for the goal that you don’t see in Men’s Lacrosse necessarily. But you still get so much addereline from it, they all have loved it and came back. That just shows that Lacrosse is a good sport, the girls love it. All of the girls that could come back, came back. It’s great from my perspective,” laughs Head Coach Rebecca LaFramboise.
Going into this Spring, LaFramboise is expecting her two seniors in Gabby Puentes-Gray and Jean White to carry the offense and is expecting them to net the bulk of their goals this season. LaFramboise is also expecting Lilly Ackerson to continue to develop at goalie after stepping into the role last season.
“She stepped up last year when we didn’t have a goalie and has really grown into the spot,” LaFramboise said. “(Puentes-Gray and White) both playing offense. So I expect a lot of the goals to be from them.”
The squad will open the season with a grueling back-to-back with Sherwood at home on March 14 before heading up to Hillsboro the next day to open the 2023 season. A good test for the now-experienced squad as they look to start the season strongly as they look to bring up to speed some of the new girls with the team playing alongside those who are returning.
“It’s going to be crazy, some of the girls are going to be thrown into the gauntlet because they’ve never played a game before and some of the girls are going to go back into the rhythm of a Varsity game, so I’m excited to see what happens with them,” LaFramboise said.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald