A Huge Victory!

We had Friday and Saturday to practice, watch film and shake off the ill effects of our Bus Trip to New Hampshire, last week. Two days to get ourselves prepared for the Mercy Mavericks, who would come into the Lions’ Den on Sunday, ranked 13th in the nation! I felt pretty good about the preparation, but would not have minded having another day.

Early morning practice, in preparation for a big game!

Yesterday (Sunday), could not get here soon enough. I was thankful for the earlier than normal start time of 11am. Arriving early at the Rockville Center Sports Complex, it already had that “big game” atmosphere. That was only amplified, as a large crowd filed in, under sunny skies. Pre-game, I sensed a level of intensity amongst our players, that I had not noticed before. I was hoping that this intensity was accompanied by confidence and belief.

The Lady Lions! Locked in!

The game began at a blistering pace. Both teams played aggressively fast. The Lions drew first blood, but we then fell behind and actually trailed by as many as five goals, when it was 9 – 4 late in the second quarter, before going into half time with the score 9 – 5. During the intermission, our team was calm and determined. We kept pace in the third quarter, which ended at 11 – 7. The Lions began the final quarter with four straight goals to tie the game at 11! Whatever doubt had existed, as to whether we could actually beat this team, was all but gone now. Mercy came out of a Time Out with two goals, to take a 13 – 11 lead with six minutes remaining in the game. Once again, the Lions responded and tied the game at 13 with three and a half minutes remaining. Each team had chances, but neither was able to convert, so into “Sudden Victory” Over Time, we went!

We had dominated at the Draw Circle all game and that held true to form, as we gained the all important possession. After a time out, the Lady Lions were able to net that final, game winning goal! The bench and the fans erupted in elation.

Post Game Vibes!

I am so proud of how our team battled all game. Playing from behind almost the entire game, they really showed mental toughness and grit! So many of the players, played their best games, in the big game. From my perspective on the sideline, it seemed that bit by bit, they played their way into believing that they could actually do it! And then, they actually did it! For me, the feeling I had yesterday, is right up there with the very best I have experienced, in all my years coaching. If you are fortunate, in sports, you get to be in some big moments and make some great memories – yesterday was one of them!

I felt so good after this one, I did not want the tailgate party to end. It was awesome to see a good number of Lion Alums in attendance, including a couple of TOGZ!

We now have a nine game winning streak! We defeated Mercy, the defending ECC Champions, for the first time since 2015! This victory marked the first time that the Lady Lions have ever defeated a nationally ranked opponent!

Such a big win, raises the bar for our team. Yesterday was our best game, to date. But we can still play better, and we will need to do so, if we are to reach our potential and accomplish our goals. Yesterday was a big step in the right direction. From this point forward, it has to be “All Gas, No Brakes”!


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