Pictured last season as a junior, senior captain and Richmond commit Sarah Roycroft (18) was poised to help Westwood make a push for the Division I state championship in 2020. Photo by Mike Flanagan.
By Mike Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
Each of the last three years, the Westwood High School girls varsity lacrosse team was eliminated by Notre Dame Academy (NDA) in the Division I South playoffs. For these Westwood seniors, 2020 was going to be their final chance to put away those demons against NDA and win a state championship.
With much of their starting lineup from last season returning, expectations for Westwood this season were extremely high. Leading the Wolverines were four co-captains: senior Richmond-bound midfielder Sarah Roycroft, senior Colgate-bound attacker Margaret Noble, senior midfielder Morgan Hughes and junior midfielder Ashley Mackin.
Unfortunately for the Westwood seniors, the chance to win a state championship never came as the COVID-19 pandemic forced their final season into cancellation. Asked about how her team would have fared in the TVL this season, a confident Sarah Roycroft says she and her fellow senior counterparts were excited to compete for the chance to go out on top.
"Going into this season, we were all very excited and confident with all the returning talent, as well as the underclassmen," said Roycroft. "This season, we were hoping to go further than the previous year and accomplish our goal of winning a state championship. We were fortunate enough to play in a few local tournaments this past winter, allowing us to see the potential talent. Our group of returners had such a great bond, which would translate to the field and help the team succeed."
With no lacrosse games to play or annual spring senior events to attend, Roycroft and her teammates have been keeping in touch through text and over Zoom in order to stay busy during quarantine.
"As a program we have been participating in Zoom calls often, where we have been catching up with each other," said Roycroft. "We also have been sharing fun activities and things we have been doing to keep busy through social media. As for lacrosse training, I have been doing virtual workouts and working on my stick skills daily to help me prepare for this upcoming fall."
Despite the lost season in 2020, Roycroft says she will always cherish being a member of the Westwood varsity program each of the last four years, and that she will miss playing with her friends she grew up with.
"Playing for the Westwood High School varsity team these past four years has been unforgettable," said Roycroft. "Joining the team as a freshman, I was so exited and honored to join one of the best programs in the state. I was able to learn so much from the amazing players that came before me, and I was looking forward to being a leader on this team. The friendships and memories I have formed through the years are ones that I will remember for the rest of my life. I will miss those special moments, like pre-game bus rides, pasta dinners, and playing big, competitive, out-of-league games. But most of all, I will miss playing with my best friends for the town we grew up in."
For funny and incisive sports analysis as well as game highlights, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter and Instagram @flano0.