Senior Cortney Meader played for the final time May 28 as a Boothbay Seahawk. She played four seasons as a field hockey player and three as a lacrosse player. She describes herself as a more serious field hockey player, but she loves playing lacrosse. “It’s a more fun version. It’s like field hockey in the air,” she said. Meader is the only senior on this spring’s team. Her senior season, like her high school lacrosse career, was abbreviated. In 2020, the entire high school spring sports season was lost due to the coronavirus. And this season, due to a low turnout and a majority of first time players, Boothbay opted to play as a club instead of as a varsity sport.
So instead of a 14-game spring schedule, Boothbay’s one senior, three juniors and nine sophomores and freshmen played only two games. Boothbay played two 7-versus-7 matches against Morse and Oceanside high schools. “I wish we had more games,” Meader said. “But, at least it gave us something to do this spring. After Kylie Brown decided to play tennis this spring, I really didn’t think there would be a team.”
Boothbay coach Bill Goldenberg believed the club sport status will help the program grow. Most of his players never played the sport before joining the high school team. Besides Meader and juniors Emily Echols, Journey Bennett and Emilie Crocker, the team had little or no experience in the sport when they joined the team. Three years ago, a friend asked Bennett and Echols to join the team. “It sounded like a fun sport so I said ‘Sure, why not,’” Echols said.
She and Bennett play as midfielders. Crocker is an attacker. She is a former softball and track and field athlete who prefers lacrosse as a spring sport. “There is no longer a softball team. I enjoy track, but not as much as others because it’s an individual sport. So I joined lacrosse, and really enjoy the team aspect,” Crocker said.
So this was more of a developmental season for Boothbay. With 12 players, Boothbay could have played as a varsity sport, but school officials were concerned about playing with an inexperienced squad without substitutes. “We had 12 players to start the season when everyone shows up, but there was still a mask mandate. There was a concern about playing with masks without subs so we opted to play as a club sport,” he said. Goldenberg wanted to continue as a club sport this season to help the sport grow and survive in Boothbay. “If we didn’t have a season this spring, I’m not sure we’d have a team next year,” he said.
As far as next season, Goldenberg and his returning players are optimistic about a return to varsity status. There is a large class of incoming eighth grade field hockey players who Echols, Bennett and Crocker plan on recruiting to play spring lacrosse. Goldenberg is also working with elementary school officials to introduce lacrosse. “There is no feeder program. I think it’s essential to have one because the sport is growing and becoming more competitive statewide.”
Other players on this year’s lacrosse team are Jordan Chamness, Mara Gentry, Fallyn Harriman, Sydney Blake, Savannah Compare, Meghan Leeman and Meg Sledge.