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Girls’ lacrosse: ConVal defender signs college letter of intent as Cougars ready for season

  • ConVal's Mackenzie Costello signed her national letter of intent to play lacrosse at Saint Michael's on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—



Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Thursday, April 11, 2019 3:47PM

 

ConVal senior lacrosse captain Mackenzie Costello is one of the Cougars’ most important players. But as a defender, all her effort doesn’t necessarily show up in the statistical categories like it does for the goal-scoring forwards. 

“You can’t quantify what she does,” said ConVal head coach Derek Sorbello. “She’s a leader out there, girls rally around her and that’s why she’s one of the captains.”

On Thursday afternoon, Costello’s hard work finally showed up on paper, as she signed her national letter of intent to play lacrosse at Saint Michael’s College in Colchester, Vermont next season. Saint Michael’s is an NCAA Division II school competing in the NE-10 conference; Costello plans to pursue a degree in physical therapy, and both the athletic and academic opportunities were opened for her through her dedication to her sport.

“Sports had a big impact on it,” Costello said. “I went into physical therapy for about a year for my hip, and after doing that, I thought ‘I really like health care, and that’s something very sports-oriented,’ so that’s where I wanted to go with it.”

Costello is one of five senior captains who’ll take the field for ConVal whenever the soggy spring conditions will allow it.

“She’s smart, she works hard, she never complains, and she’s all effort,” Sorbello said. “You just put Mac out to play, and she plays. You tell her ‘Hey Mac, we need you to shut this girl down,’ ‘Okay,’ and she just goes out and does it. That’s kind of how she deals with everything.”

Along with Costello, ConVal’s captains are Kalli Taylor, Hannah Johnson, Sienna Sorbello and Dee Kashulines, and those senior Cougars must exhibit every ounce of leadership they possess as they navigate their new Division II schedule after moving up from Division III. 

“I’m really excited about this team,” Costello said. “I think that we have a ton of skills and girls who are just naturally athletic, even if they haven’t played that long, they’re already picking it up so fast that I’m really confident in our team’s ability to go out there and hold our own against these much bigger schools with much bigger programs.”

Costello said her team has a lot of “crazy fast” midfielders and speed should be a strength for the Cougars this season; and, as a defensive leader, she hopes her team can put the clamps down on their opponents.

“It would be a good goal to say ‘We’re going to have this really strong defense that’s just going to shut down everything,’ which is ambitious, but I think we can make it happen,” Costello said.

Junior Lily Dell takes over in goal this season for ConVal, hoping to replace four-year starter Emma Crowley. ConVal graduated their goalie, two 100-goal scorers in Grace Dell and Lily Sheridan, and two more college-bound players in Katie Moorehead and KalbieGrassett. But where some might focus on the void left behind by those players, Costello sees the opportunity.

“We’ve all just followed in each other’s footsteps and I’ve definitely looked up to the girls who graduated last year and went on and played, and I think we’re all kind of hoping to do what they did,” Costello said.

ConVal has had their first few games postponed due to field conditions and is currently scheduled to open the season at Hanover on Tuesday.