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Tribe Lacrosse Starts Season Fast
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2022-03-30

            Upper Perkiomen's lacrosse team started fast in its season opening victory last weekend. Head coach Catie Sobotor described it as an early signal that the players have adapted to her system.  "It's nice to see," she said. "The players seem to have absorbed

Upper Perkiomen junior Mary Kae Sitko, right, reaches

for the ball on a face-off during Saturday's game against

C.B. East.  Sitko scored three goals and added an assist.

what I've been teaching. Their skills have been growing."

            The Indians opened their fourth season under Sobotor with a 12-7 non-league victory over Central Bucks East on Saturday, March 26. MaryKate Sitko and Mia Schneider each finished with three goals.

            Payton Bettys and Lindsay Bieler each scored twice for the Tribe (2-0 overall, PAC, 1-0 overall), which built a commanding 7-1 halftime lead against the visiting Patriots. Maggie Milkowich and Abby Davidheiser each added a goal.

            "Seeing more people want to score is a great thing," said Sobotor, who added that she expects all those scorers to post at least one goal in every game. "Offense has been hard to find the last couple years."

            The defense allowed the visiting Patriots just 12 shots on goal. Makenzie Bettys recorded five saves.

            On Tuesday, the Tribe opened its Pioneer Athletic Conference schedule with a 16-6 road win over Pope John Paul II. Payton Bettys and Sitko each led the team with five goals and one assist.

             Schneider posted two goals for the Indians, who led 6-3 at halftime. Makenzie Bettys registered 11 saves. Bieler and Davidheiser each finished with a goal and an assist. Milkowich and Abby Orsini each scored once.

            The team's nonleague game at Lower Moreland, originally scheduled for Monday, was postponed until April 5 due to cold temperatures.

            In 2021, the Indians went 3-7 in the conference and 4-9 overall during an abbreviated season due to COVID-19. They missed qualifying for the District One Class 5A playoffs, which took the top 16 qualifiers, by four spots.

            Despite having only five seniors and four returning starters, the coach said she expects this year's squad to post at least a winning record. Sobotor didn't rule out earning a berth in the Pioneer Athletic Conference playoffs or the District One playoffs.

            "I expect us to compete pretty well," said Sobotor, in her fourth season leading the program.

               According to the coach, the players' familiarity with her system has made practice run more smoothly. Sobotor also said the seniors – defenders Lucianna Carpenter, Elizabeth Greczak, Makenzie Bettys, attacker Cassidy Bush and Bieler – take their leadership duties seriously.  "Practice seems to flow much better," she said

            Carpenter and Greczak, both named second team all-conference last season, anchor the defense. As four-year starters, neither shy away from pulling a teammate aside for encouragement or for a critique.  "They are very vocal and knowledgeable," Sobotor said. "They're not afraid to help the younger girls. It's good to see them do that on their own."

            Sitko, a junior who earned first-team all-conference honors last season, helped control the midfield in Upper Perkiomen's season opening victory. According to the coach, she and Payton Bettys stepped up their offensive games against C.B. East.

            "They truly want to get better and make the team better, which is great to see," said Sobotor, whose team is scheduled to host Pottstown on Thursday.


 

 

 

 

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