Masuk girls lacrosse team off to great start

Samantha Sullivan recorded two goals in the win over Barlow.

MONROE, CT — It is only two games into the Masuk High girls lacrosse season, but head coach of the Panthers Rob Troesser already has plenty of reason for optimism and excitement. After all, the Panthers defeated a pair of typically challenging foes in Glastonbury and Joel Barlow.

Masuk began the season on the road on April 2 with a 10-6 victory over Glastonbury, then toppled Barlow 14-6 in the home opener on April 4.

Against Glastonbury Charlotte Pinto scored three goals; Bailey Bajda, Samantha Henry and Lilly Cameron all had two and Sophie Gustinis added a tally. Henry and Bajda combined for eight draw controls and four caused turnovers (two each).

In the Barlow game, Cameron scored five, Pinto netted four, Bajda three and Samantha Sullivan notched a pair. Goaltender Sophie Clark made four saves.

Henry logged seven draw controls, six ground balls, two caused turnovers and two assists; Emma Troesser recorded assists, three ground balls, two draw controls and forced two turnovers.

Last year, Masuk edged Barlow by just one goal.

Charlotte pinto looks for an open teammate during Masuk’s 14-6 win over Barlow.

“It was a different feel this game. We were the dominant team. Our players were focused and ready to go from the beginning,” Troesser said.

Under the new State Class setup, Masuk is in Class L, Glastonbury in Class LL and Barlow in Class M and being that Glastonbury and Barlow are traditionally tough squads in the state bracket, Troesser thinks his team can do some damage in Class L this spring.

“The two games show the potential for a playoff run farther than we’ve had in the past,” said the Masuk coach, whose team has been as deep as the state semis in the past.

In other words, the Panthers are looking to contend for a spot in the state title game, if not win it all. They are also striving to be in the South-West Conference mix of teams challenging for a championship, Troesser said.

Girls lacrosse switched from halves to quarters this year, and Masuk’s coach likes the tweak, saying it builds in more stoppages for rest and strategizing, which is helpful since teams only have two timeouts at their disposal.

Masuk’s next game is Saturday at Staples in Westport at 12 p.m.

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