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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, May 12, 2011

Lady Dutch lacrosse rolling, remain unbeaten in 75 games

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– Opposing defenders beware: Hesitate for one second in front of the cage, and you’re cooked.

The Averill Park defense was getting burned by the Lady Dutch lacrosse team, which scored 16 goals on Tuesday at home. It was the eighth time Guilderland had scored at least 16 goals in a game this season, and it was the team’s sixth double-digit victory.

Also, the Lady Dutch extended its goals’ total to 206, while pushing its Section II unbeaten streak to 74 games.

Guilderland is a four-time defending Class A champion, too.

“Our team has good fortune,” said Head Coach Gary Chatnik after the 16-to-4 victory over Averill Park. “We have a whole team that plays well, not just a few stars. Everyone is squared away.”

Guilderland was up big for the entire game, but didn’t relax one bit on offense or defense. The team was relentless, only backing off with nine seconds remaining in regulation play.

“We like to pick up the pace through the game,” said Kendall Cietek, who is second in scoring for the Dutch with 44 points after a goal and an assist on Tuesday. “We’re always pushing ourselves because every team wants to be the first to beat us.”

Averill Park never had much of a chance, but a few opponents did have quality opportunities to beat the Lady Dutch this season. Guilderland came from behind to beat Shaker on April 14 and Niskayuna on May 3 in double overtime. Niskayuna had built a five-goal pad in the second half, but the Dutch took it.

Senior Erin Mossop, who leads Guilderland with 53 goals and 30 assists, told The Enterprise that intensity is a real issue when going back and forth between harder and easier contests.

“Sometimes, we go into a game thinking that it’s in the bag for us,” said Mossop, mentioning that Tuesday may have been one of those instances. “We probably shouldn’t do that because we might end up screwing ourselves over. We have to play our best all of the time to prevent that from happening.”

The Lady Dutch knew what was coming against Niskayuna, Cietek said, but the team overcame the pressure and pulled it out.

“We didn’t come in as intense as a week ago,” Cietek said on Tuesday. “But, we should come in with the same intensity every time.”

In a game played last night the Lady Dutch dominated Colonie in a 24-15 win.

With one regular-season game left against Columbia, which is 1-13, this Friday, Guilderland will likely finish undefeated in the Suburban Council for the fourth straight year. Mossop couldn’t help but to look forward to meeting Niskayuna or Shaker again in sectionals.

“We’re looking forward a little bit, but we got to stay focused,” Mossop said. “We’re putting all the little things together.”

Mossop said that the team has been trying new combinations this year, like switching the defense from backer to one-on-one. Mossop demonstrated what “backer” meant, extending her stick and saying that a teammate is always behind the person who is guarding the ball.

“We’ve mixed things up,” said Mossop. “Change can be good, and having more options is also good for us as a team.”

Mossop went on, saying, “It doesn’t matter who scores all the goals because we have the same goal of winning sectionals again. Yes, some of us have great games and some of us have bad ones, but someone is always stepping up.”

Coach Chatnik said that his team “understands the job” and is “ready to perform.” He’s sticking to the old game-by-game adage. “We’ll be in sectionals,” he said. “But, we have to be ready.”

If the Lady Dutch doesn’t have “just a few stars,” as Chatnik said, then maybe it has a whole team’s worth of luminaries.

“Everyone wants to be in the game and we push each other,” said Cietek, who plays alongside her twin sister, Mackenzie. “We make ourselves into stars, feel like stars. We all want to be out there, winning.”

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