Temple lacrosse uses fall tournaments to ‘grow their game’

To prepare for the spring, coach Bonnie Rosen required all players to play at different positions during fall competitions.

Freshman midfielder Charessa Crosse practices defensive stances during practice at Howarth Field on Oct. 8. | COLLEEN CLAGGETT / THE TEMPLE NEWS

In Spring 2019, Temple University lacrosse went 6-11 overall yet had a winning 3-2 record in The American Athletic Conference. The Owls earned an appearance in the conference tournament but lost to Cincinnati, 13-9.

Rosen and her staff are taking a different approach to this offseason than they have in the past. Rather than trying to develop the starting lineup, Rosen is focusing on “growing everyone’s full game” and has put players at different positions throughout the fall.

“It’s definitely a little bit different because we get used to playing with the same people,” said senior goalkeeper Maryn Lowell. “If you have a lot of people that are typically attackers playing defense, you need to do a good job of communicating so they can adjust.”

Rosen decided to change her offseason strategy to change the team’s mindset about what they can and can’t do.

“We’re…trying to see what it brings out of them in terms of developing skill sets, fitness, ability to play with different people,” Rosen said. “We’ve been doing that in the games as well.”

In past fall tournaments, Rosen has fielded a lineup she hopes to use in the spring or worked on perfecting the offensive and defensive strategies. This fall, she wants every player to gain experience and confidence. 

The players have seen time in new positions during tournaments as well as in practice. Rosen said the team is performing well in its tournaments, though official statistics aren’t recorded.

“We work both sides [of the ball] in practice, so that makes it easier [in the tournaments],” said freshman attacker Riley McGowan. 

Several players who have been in a defensive role in the past have shown an ability to score goals, Rosen added.

Lowell said that senior defender Kara Nakrasius, who played in the midfield in high school, is an asset when transitioning the ball up and down the field. Nakrasius uses her three years of experience as a defender to predict what will be successful on the attack Lowell added.

“We’re going to figure out how to take advantage of that in the spring,” Rosen said. 

Attacking players have shown growth in the defensive aspects of the game, Rosen said. 

“[Senior attacker] Julia Ryan does a really job on defense, like adjusting,” Lowell said. “She always is trying really hard to get better at that, which is something that I definitely noticed. So that’s a good thing.”

Ryan is currently listed as an attacker on the roster. In her previous three years at Temple, she played at midfield.

“We are really a kind of well-rounded team in terms of, a lot of people can do a lot of really nice things,” Rosen said. “We’re going to need to try and figure out, you know, how we’re going to take advantage of all of our talents.”

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