National championships are usually considered to be a rare, perfect culmination of years of team chemistry, on-the-field experience and off-the-field development.
But the North Carolina women’s lacrosse team is hoping to reload and repeat last year’s title run with a new-look squad, including new senior leaders and fresh first-year faces.
After the Tar Heels cruised to 4-0 on the season with a 22-8 home victory against Vanderbilt on Saturday, coach Jenny Levy said new is not necessarily a bad thing and certainly hasn’t kept the team from succeeding.
“We tell everyone, ‘Look, no one is young here,‘” she said. “We’ve all played the game for a long time. We’re just inexperienced playing together.
“Each game gives us an opportunity to build experience in playing with each other and finding who’s capable of doing what.”
The freshman class, which was ranked the best in the country, has continued to prove how well it fits in and what it is capable of.
Freshman Sydney Holman, who has already been one of the team’s leading scorers this season, showcased another impressive element of her play by contributing a school record-tying six assists Saturday.
“We knew (Holman) is a great feeder,” Levy said. “She has great vision on the field. It just adds a whole other element to our offense.”
On the other end of four of Holman’s assists was senior Taylor George, who used the freshman’s feeds on her way to a career-high five-goal game.