Now they are making sure that they take advantage of their final run as varsity players.
Van Ogtrop, the coach for the majority of the players the last 11 years, is immensely proud of how far they’ve come while continuing to value their roots and mentor current youth players.
Six of the seven seniors logged regular minutes on varsity as freshmen and learned from a successful Class of 2019. Fresh off a scintillating, 13-12, overtime win over rival Boston Latin on Tuesday, they’re piecing everything they’ve absorbed together to emerge as both Dual County Small and Division 3 contenders.
“Getting to play with the people we all started with, it feels like I’m playing with my family,” said Brisky, a captain and standout goalie.
This magical senior season has been over a decade in the making.
Van Ogtrop, who has been the varsity coach since 2018, said this core never missed practices or games at the youth level and would always volunteer whenever another team needed an extra player. During a wall ball challenge in sixth grade, they took the matter extremely seriously and put up eye-popping numbers.
Together, they helped the Wildcats finish the 2019 season 16-6 and earn a trip to the Division 2 East quarter finals. They had high hopes moving forward, but the pandemic abruptly curbed their momentum. Van Ogtrop helped keep everyone’s spirits as high as possible, conducting challenges and drills over Zoom, but they couldn’t help but feel heartbroken and shortchanged.
The 2021 season wasn’t as kind as 2019 record-wise; the current seniors had to adjust to becoming junior leaders on a team with no seniors. Weston finished 4-10 and never quite hit its stride in a spring altered by rule changes and constant adjustments. At one point the Wildcats — who now allocate 10-to-15 minutes every practice toward injury prevention — had nine players out, including Trodden, who missed nearly the entire year with a Lisfranc injury.
“It didn’t feel like a normal season, and that was definitely hard on some girls,” said captain Reed van Ogtrop, one of the coach’s two daughters on the varsity roster. “This season we’ve gone from freshmen to seniors in a way. We didn’t technically, but it sort of feels like it.”
It’s a challenge they’ve collectively embraced from the start, and they relish the opportunity to mentor the younger players just like the seniors in 2019 did for them. Brisky said those seniors gave these seniors the blueprint for how to create a positive culture.
For instance, they’re planning a game of capturing the flag at the field before the state tournament, just like that group did for them their freshman year. Senior spring can be a hectic time, but they’re doing everything in their power to leave a legacy and jointly build towards the first state title in program history.
“The seniors realized this is it, and it’s hitting them,” said Wink Van Ogtrop. “The magnitude of it, the heaviness of it. It’s less about lacrosse, because a lot of them do want to play in college. It’s more about this team and how much it means to them. They’re making it count.”
Maddy Schiller and Scully Power lead the way with 31 and 29 goals, respectively. Midfielders Trodden (23 goals, 37 draw controls) and van Ogtrop (12 goals, 18 assists, 15 caused turnovers) are also catalysts, and Chloe SchillerParker, Olivier, Lily Kacyvenski, Siena Ferrucci, Coco Curran, Haven Trodden, Chase Van Ogtrop, Ava Dreyerand Maddie Flanagan, among others, all contribute on a deep and balanced roster. Van Ogtrop consistently marvels at their unselfishness, togetherness, and unwavering spirit.
The Wildcats have responded from early holes to outlast tough opponents in Bedford and Acton-Boxborough — and most recently Boston Latin, as Kacyvenski delivered the winner with 12 seconds left in overtime. Van Ogtrop preaches persistence over perfection, and she her team has bought into that mindset that a deficit is never truly insurmountable, no matter how bleak the situation may seem.
“I’m not sure this team could have done that in years past,” Wink van Ogtrop said. “The skills were there. They had the ability to do it. I don’t know if they had the mental toughness and grit to do it. This year, we’re showing incredible maturity.”
▪ No. 19 Bedford (8-1) overcame a 6-0 deficit against Acton-Boxborough in an eventual 16-11 Dual County League win Tuesday, spearheaded by senior twins Sophie (7 goals) and Abby Morrissey (3 goals), who combined for 10 goals.
The twins compete for Laxachusetts during the club season. They plan to split up for college next year — though they won’t be too far away from one another — Abby will attend the University of Miami, and Sophie will study at the University of Florida.
▪ Nantucket held its annual “Stick it to Cancer” game Friday against Martha’s Vineyard, benefitting the American Cancer Society. The Whalers have raised $4,061 so far through the fundraiser, surpassing their initial goal of $3,000, and the campaign is ongoing.
Games to watch
Thursday, No. 15 Cohasset at No. 3 Notre Dame (Hingham), 4 pm — The Skippers travel to No. 3 Notre Dame (Hingham) for a nonleague contest. At 4-1-1, Cohasset sits at the top of the South Shore League, and independent NDA is 9-1-0.
Friday, Andover at Chelmsford, 5:30 pm — With a toss-up for the middle spots in the Merrimack Valley Conference, Andover (4-5-0) takes on host Chelmsford (5-5-0) looking to vault up the standings.
Monday, No. 20 Masconometers at Swampscott, 4 pm — The Chieftains (7-2-0) currently sit undefeated in Northeastern Conference play. The Big Blue (4-2-0) will host Masconomet looking to make waves in the league.
Monday, Canton at Foxborough, 5:15 pm — A clash of the top two teams in the Hockomock-Davenport division. Canton (5-0-0) currently has the edge.
Tuesday, No. 2 Franklin at No. 1 Westwood, 4 pm — No. 1 Westwood (9-0-0) and No. 2 Franklin (7-0-0) have held the top two spots all season long. A rematch of last year’s D1 final could foreshadow another Division I playoff matchup.
Emma Healy contributed to this story.
Trevor Hass can be reached at email@example.com.