~ Submitted by Bedford Youth Lacrosse
The Bedford Youth Lacrosse girls program’s tremendous strides have continued in 2022, as the program’s two Select teams have finished undefeated in regular season play and are headed to league playoffs.
At the 7/8 grade level, the “Middlesex United” team features players from Bedford, Lowell, and Littleton, while the 5/6 grade team is comprised of all Bedford players. Each team has faced down powerhouse programs, such as Concord-Carlisle, Belmont, and Charlestown, earning high-ranking seeds in their respective divisions.
In the Spring of 2022, Bedford Youth Lacrosse took a bold step and moved into the Founders Girls Lacrosse League, which features some of the toughest youth teams in Massachusetts. “To have both Select teams (the elite teams) perform so well in the largest, most competitive league in our state is an accomplishment every player and coach should be proud of,” said Sarah Kohler, BYL Girls Program Director. “Our youth program works very hard to encourage new players at every grade level, yet build highly competitive teams. Our girls and our coaches have really delivered this season – and they’re having fun!”
In late April, when coaches Victor Zevallos and Derek Yerardi held tryouts for their 7/8 select team, they had no idea the mishmash of players they assembled from Bedford, Lowell, and Littleton, calling themselves “Middlesex United,” would become such a well-oiled machine. However, said Coach Yerardi, “there was rarely a moment these girls trailed on the scoreboard. And, if they ever did fall behind, their top-notch skill and enthusiastic energy allowed them to quickly overcome the deficit.” Middlesex United finished the regular season 5-0 and holds the #1 seed in their division of 24 teams. The team begins its playoff run on Friday, June 3rd.
At the 5/6 level, seventeen Bedford players were selected at tryouts to represent the town in their division of 28 teams. This team finished 4-0-1, allowing an average of only 4 goals against per game, the third-best in the division. “We try to create a defensive mindset,” said Coach Seth Cargiuolo. “Every player is a defensive player, we make our opponents pay for every inch of progress.” Likewise, the team’s offense is a family affair – 10 out of 16 field players have scored for the team, with 80% of goals coming from 5 different players. To confound opposing defenses, Cargiuolo said, “the shots can come from any angle, at any time, from any player.” The 5/6 team begins their playoff run on Wednesday, June 1st.
The key to these teams’ success has been the level of effort and discipline offered by the players. “They work hard, listen to their coaches, and play with real focus and pride,” said 5/6 Coach Bob Scoville, who has coached multiple teams in the program.
“We are very happy with how the girls’ programs are competing in the Founders League this season,” said Director of Player Development Jill Abel. “Every team has both new and experienced players who are focused and committed on developing their skills and adding to the success of their teams. As Director of Player Development and an assistant coach, I am extremely proud of these girls for their hard work and dedication to the sport of lacrosse.”
Middlesex United 7/8 Roster:
Bedford – Ashley Cohen, Julie Curtis, Sophia Demeo, Sadie King, Katherine Kohler, Violet Lorusso, Olivia O’Brien, Giliana Periera, Jadyn Robinson, Tova Yerardi, Sophia Zevallos
Littleton – Olivia Kopelman, Izzy Reid, Lily Teto
Lowell – Quiana Bell, Sydney Brophy, Julia Dunfey, Avry Mckiernan
Coaches – Derek Yerardi, Victor Zevallos, Paul Dunfey
Bedford Black 5/6 Roster:
Jocelyn Bullard, Jesse Cargiuolo, Danielle D’Ascoli, Zoey Kauffman, Sadah Luongo, Kayah Maloney, Mary McDonald, Sofie Pattaropong, Caitlin Plurad, Juliette Rucker, Emma Sayles, Lucy Scoville, Clara Trautz, Grace Venuti, Jane Whitesides, Megan Zbikowski, Mia Zevallos, Grace Collins
Coaches – Seth Cargiuolo, Virginia Whitesides, Bob Scoville, Jon Zbikowski, Jill Abel