Girls Lacrosse Ramps Up For Yet Another Exceptional Season


Photo Courtesy of George Weinchez

Junior Addison Stoppenhagen and Senior Julissa Vielma fighting for a ground ball at a game against San Dieguito Academy.

Judy Scott, Sports Editor

   Coming off an exceptional season last year, UC High’s Girls Lacrosse Team is preparing for another round of victories, hoping to set even more records for the program.

    Head Varsity Coach Lizzy Des Enfants, 2022 winner of US Lacrosse’s San Diego Girls Coach of the Year title, USD Women’s Lacrosse Coach, and Varsity Field Hockey Assistant Coach, is excited for another exceptional season. “I think just for the camaraderie and the fact that we doubled our program size, I’m excited that we are getting more people to play lacrosse,” said Des Enfants.

   In the 2022 season, the team went undefeated in League play, winning League for the second time since the sport was established at UC High in 2017. Advancing into CIFs last year, the team made history by playing into quarterfinals for the first time ever. “Obviously, we want to win League champs. Last year we went undefeated and this year we are hoping to do it again. I would love to be able to win another CIF title as we did this past season for field hockey, having two in one year,” said Des Enfants.

   Her enthusiasm for the sport and lovable personality have inspired many field hockey athletes to join the lacrosse team this season. “Coach Lizzy was my field hockey coach, and she encouraged me to come try it. The summer before, I watched one of the games and thought it looked really fun. Everyone is really nice which just made it easy to come out and try,” said Senior Mia Stewart. “I like learning a new sport, and I think it’s really cool how much skill and finesse is involved,” she added.

   For the past two years, due to a lack of coaching staff, girls lacrosse has only had a Varsity Team. This year, junior varsity is back with two new coaches joining the program, JV Head Coach Jessie Franco and Varsity Assistant Coach Amanda Khouzouri. Assistant Coach Mark Rheindhart also returns for his third year with the program.

   Lacrosse also prepares students for real life, helping build character and connections with others. “My goal as a lacrosse coach isn’t necessarily just to teach the sport of lacrosse, it’s to help the players become confident and independent in how they make decisions. Additionally, to grow the game of lacrosse, giving girls the chance to learn a new skill and enjoy a sport that I love so much,” said Des Enfants.

   There are a plethora of newcomers to the team, with only 11 returners for varsity from last season. With many new players having little experience in lacrosse, it has been a big adjustment. Des Enfants said, “We are going to do a lot of passing so that we can improve our stick skills. I think that would be the main focus, and then a lot of instructional teaching to teach the rules of lacrosse and game awareness.” Junior Lina Quosar said, “One of my favorite aspects is our shuttle drills [different kinds of passing techniques] in the beginning of practice, because I think that’s really important in growing our stick skills.”

   A typical practice consists of warmups, conditioning, different defensive and offensive or shooting drills, and usually ends in a scrimmage of some sort. “We usually start practice with a warm up lap, dynamic stretches, then we go into shuttles. After that the coaches usually set up drills for us based on what we need to work on from previous games,” said Junior Emilia Ghandour, a returning player to the Varsity Team. “We usually do a lot of passing drills, then we turn it into team play, and we condition,” said Des Enfants.