Who doesn’t love a good pioneer story?
Those tales of people stepping out on the proverbial ledge and facing the great unknown before anybody else should make all of us take notice. It’s been said that it took a very brave person to be the first to try eating an oyster. But you can really say it takes courage to be the first to try anything. At least, the first person you know to try something.
There are 21 girls at Indian River High School who are stepping out into the great unknown this spring, hopefully blazing a trail for future classes, and generations. They will make up the first girls lacrosse team in the school’s history, and they will be playing nine junior varsity games this year, with the plan that the program will advance to the varsity level down the road.
There is a wide array of talent levels on the team. Maggie Allison, for instance, has vast experience playing the sport and will be heading off to play collegiately. A few others have also played on club level. Some had never played before the team’s first practice a few weeks ago.
But they will all be part of that first team. And that is something they will be able to carry with them for the rest of their lives.
The team will be led by head coach Kara Voss and assistant Anne McBride. Voss has played lacrosse for the University of Delaware and coached it at various levels before coming to Indian River, and she is well aware of the challenges that await her. But she’s seen enough already to be hopeful for the future.
“I think they’re doing great,” said Voss. “I think it’s good that we have [players] that know what they’re doing. They’re really good at mixing with the girls and helping them out.”
How they fare against outside competition is anybody’s guess at this point, but the real hope is for growth of the sport at Indian River, as McBride explained.
“To get the girls hooked on the sport, give them a great appreciation, [and] give them a super experience,” said McBride. “It’s not all about wins and losses. Give them a chance to better their skills and be part of a team.”
We are proud of the girls who have signed on to blaze this trail in women’s athletics, and thankful for those who advocated for them to have this opportunity.