The Fenwick High School girls lacrosse team entered its game May 12 against visiting Lane Tech with an impressive 5-1 record. But the Friars knew that the visitors — who were undefeated — would provide a stern test.

Displaying speed on both ends of the field, Lane Tech took control early on and knocked off Fenwick 13-8 at the Dominican Priory in River Forest. 

“Lane is the fastest team we’ve played so far. The pace of this game was faster than what we’re used to,” said Fenwick coach Tracy Bonaccorsi. “It was a little bit of an adjustment for us. We have a lot of young players and this was their first tough game.”

Defensively, Lane Tech made it difficult for the Friars’ offense, using its quickness to maintain defensive discipline and force multiple turnovers.

“We definitely need to go to the goal more. Driving from up top is something we’ve been working on,” Bonaccorsi said. “A lot of it will come with confidence. We have to believe we can score even though [the opponents] are playing tough defense.”

One bright spot for the Friars (5-3) against Lane Tech was the play of senior captain Caroline Finn, who scored three goals and was a notable presence both on offense and defense. 

“Caroline is a great leader,” said Bonaccorsi of Finn, a Florida Tech signee who leads Fenwick with 23 goals and 14 assists. “She’s someone we can always count on when the ball is on her stick.”

On May 14, the Friars took their second loss in a row, falling at St. Ignatius 14-4. Finn had two goals and an assist, and Bonaccorsi felt Fenwick played better than the final score indicated.

Despite the back-to-back losses, the Friars are happy to be back playing after last season’s cancelation due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Bonaccorsi tells her players every day when she’s at work, she looks forward to practice later and working with them.

“Last year was my first, so the season getting canceled was tough,” she said. “We’ve been waiting a long time to get together and play with each other. It’s been awesome.”

As the regular season heads into the final weeks, Bonaccorsi said she feels it’s important the Friars develop self-confidence and maintain belief whenever things become difficult like they did against Lane.

“Going forward, we need to work on being tougher mentally,” she said. “When everything is flowing, we trust ourselves and each other, but when we got down today, we started gripping our sticks and dropping passes because we were worried about making mistakes instead of playing with confidence.”

Fenwick has six games remaining in the regular season, including home contests against Trinity on May 23 and Oak Park and River Forest May 28.

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