Ending with the best
Oasis Academy’s girls’ lacrosse team closed its season with games against the top two teams in the league.
The Lady Bighorns played against Truckee, then Galena in the playoffs. They lost both games, 18-9 against Truckee and 15-2 against Galena.
Oasis girls’ coach Lisa Swan said the team struggled in the games and the defense broke down. She said the Lady Bighorns had trouble making shots and players who normally scored weren’t able to; she noted Sadie O’Flaherty was the focus of Truckee’s defense since she had scored several goals in their last encounter.
“They were double and triple teaming Sadie,” Swan said. “When you’re playing that second game, you know who made all the points the first time you played them.”
Against Truckee, Maiya Swan scored four goals, then Brooklyn Whitaker and Taryn Barrenchea made two each. Kate Dunkin played a good game in the goal, saving 45 percent of shots. Swan said this was amazing given that Truckee was the No. 2 team in the league, and Dunkin had only recently taken over as goalie.
In the game against Galena, Swan said her players seemed to overthink things and were intimidated. This led to a shutout first half; during halftime, Swan spoke to her players and inspired them to shoot for a rally.
O’Flaherty and Whitaker scored the two goals for Oasis.
The Lady Bighorns were No. 2 in the league in shots on goal, recording 184. O’Flaherty was the team’s offensive MVP, with 46 goals and 13 assists, with Duncan as defensive MVP. Maiya Swan was their overall MVP for the season with 43 goals and 17 assists. Everyone on the team also earned a varsity letter.
The players also impressed others within the league. Swan said after games, coaches and referees would compliment her on the team’s sportsmanship; she said other teams would shout obscenities or insults on the field, but the Oasis players were always polite and dedicated to playing a good game.
“After the playoff game, the refs came up to us and told us that by far we have the best sportsmanship for coaches, parents and players and everybody had been talking about how we’re the up and coming team,” Swan said, noting how huge it was since the team is mostly youth players.
Looking forward, Swan said she will work to teach the players the playbook. She recalled there were times when someone would call out a play and only a few players on the field knew what to do.
“The play doesn’t work if only three of the five know it,” she said.
The players and coaches have already begun reviewing the season and figuring out what needs to be changed next year. Swan said they are reviewing footage of their games and working out individual things to work on.
Swan said she wants to send Duncan to a goalie camp this summer to improve her skills, but she hopes to arrange a general lacrosse camp.
“We can only go up from here and look forward to next season and making it to the playoffs again,” Swan said.
All of the current members of the team have expressed interest in returning to lacrosse next year. Swan said they also had interest from younger students during the extra curricular activities fair.
She would like to see more students from the Churchill County schools play — there are currently four Churchill County students on the team.
“I would love to get a few more,” Swan said. “I know there’s a lot of athletic girls over there … One of those girls or two, or three, I would love to have a couple of them.”