High School Girls

May 26, 2012

USL National Tournament Player Blog: Laura Frankenfield

Laura Frankenfield is a junior attacker from Wissahickon (Pa.) High School who is playing for the Philly 1 team at the 2012 US Lacrosse Women’s National Tournament. This is her second straight year blogging for us at this event, and we’re excited to have her share her experience with us again this year. She's verbally committed to Boston College.

Laura Frankenfield has had a busy weekend. Prom on Friday night in Philly and her first game of the 2012 US Lacrosse National Tournament at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning on Long Island.

© Lee Weissman

MAY 27, 5:20 P.M. - Up before the world again today. Team Philly had the pleasure of getting the earliest possible game, so that meant waking up at 5:30 and playing at 7am.  We had a close one with DC Metro, but ended up losing by two goals.

This morning concluded pool play and playoffs started in the afternoon. We were placed in the fifth place game against Baltimore Metro 2. It seemed as though the team really clicked that game and we had a win to end the tournament.  We ended with a record of 2-3, and a lot of close losses. Sometimes things just didn't go our, way but in the scheme of things it was a great experience.

I found that the tournament this year, compared to last year, was a lot different.  Not in terms of competitiveness, but in terms of personal pressure. While I always have played lacrosse because I love it, it was refreshing to be at a tournament where I could genuinely enjoy myself and just play . Being committed takes a lot of weight of your shoulders, to say the least. Last year I would have been looking at the sidelines every few minutes just to see what coaches were watching. But this year, it was just about going as hard as you could and doing as much as you could to contribute to the team while still competing at the highest possible level.  

But for those freshman and sophomores at the National Tournament, it's a great experience that really helps in the growth of a player. It's such a high level of play, which pulls in the best college coaches and allows for early exposure. Whether you're scoring all the goals or just playing a small role on the team, getting your name out there and getting to these tournaments is the best thing you can do; you will reap the benefits down the road.  For me, I know I grew a lot last year and it set the tone for a summer filled with lacrosse.

Congratulations to Lower New England for winning it all!  I would definitely suggest to anyone who is still in Long Island to head over to the NCAA championship tonight, if you're not already laxed out that is! Hopefully I'll be back again next year in the Seniors Only Division, but for now it's off to the shore for the rest of the weekend! 

May 26 - 6 p.m.: - It was an early morning, to say the least. While most of the girls playing here in the US Lacrosse Women's National Tournament were sound asleep in their hotel rooms, I was just waking up to head out to Stony Brook.  For some odd reason, my high school thought it was a great idea to have our senior/junior prom on the Friday of Memorial Day weekend. So for me, that not only meant I had to be home at 12 last night, but it also meant that I had to wake up at 4 a.m.  And to top it all off, my team got the earliest possible game (8 a.m.) this morning.

So at the field at 7:30am, I met my new teammates. Most of them I already knew, or had heard of, so that was a good start. But with no practices or experience playing together as a team, we had a rough start to the day with a 12-6 loss to New Jersey North. It’s always tough the first game here, not knowing who does what well and everyone’s tendencies on the field.  It often takes a little time to figure that out and work out the kinks.

Turns out we worked out a lot of kinks by the time we got to game two against Long Island. We played a full 50 minutes of great lacrosse, and pulled out a 14-10 win. With a three-hour break and plenty of time to nap, we came out in game three looking just flat out exhausted.  Towards the end of the game we picked things up a bit and but still lost by four goals to Baltimore (12-8).

While there's no greater feeling than playing with an extremely talented group of girls and doing well, I always find the National Tournament to be one of the harder tournaments for a few reasons. First off, like I said before, you don't typically play with the girls on your team, so it takes a bit of adjusting. Everyone has their role on the field it takes a little to piece it all together, but once you do you have a ridiculously good team.  
Secondly, the heat!  It has been in the low 70s and raining for probably the past six days in Philly. Stony Brook today was somewhere around 85 and super sunny and needless to say, it took a while for everyone's bodies to adjust to the change.  Lastly, for me at least, it takes a little bit to get it into high gear. For the past two months or so I've just been doing high school lacrosse, which is insanely different from club lacrosse. You're playing against the best girls in the nation, not the girls from surrounding schools, which means you have to step your game up.  But the challenge is fun, and once it all falls together and everything is how it needs to be, it makes for a really competitive and exciting tournament.

Probably the coolest aspect of the tournament is that it surrounds the NCAA final four tournament. It gives everyone a taste of what could be. We're all here to get seen and play in college, so what could we want more than to play on a team that wins a national championship?  The whole spirit of the event makes it unlike any other tournament. Not to mention it’s pretty cool to see Gary Gait walking around, knowing what his Syracuse team pulled off last night.

So one day down, one to go here in Stony Brook. Luckily, we managed to get the earliest possible game tomorrow, 7, so I'll be up bright and early. After that playoffs start, and then the National Championship game later that night. It's sure to be an eventful day, so keep checking back for updates!

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