B'ville lacrosse across the pond

B'ville's girls' lacrosse recently scrimmaged in England. That's right, scrimmages in the United Kingdom.

After hosting and playing England teams for many years, last year's English visitors invited the girls' varsity team to visit their homeland for some recreational play. The Baldwinsville group of 34 (27 players, coaches Doug Rowe and Lionel Brown, four parent chaperones and video man Mo Lepine) made the journey during spring break, departing April 11 and returning April 19.

"We decided in August to go for it," Coach Doug Rowe said about planning the trip. "I put a committee of about seven parents together and they went to work."

To fund the trip, parents and players organized several fundraisers including a social, fashion show and pancake breakfast at Applebee's. The team also received private and commercial donations and money from their summer tournament.

"We received a ton of community support," Rowe said. "We were even granted time with Jim Rieth on his radio show."

Their fundraising efforts were well worth it as the girls went 5-0, even though the games had no official score. The team played against Lady Eleanor Holles on Sunday, the St. Swithun's first and second team on Wednesday and the Haberdashers first and second team on Thursday.

"We won easily St. Swithun's School, which was the England school girls' national champion," Rowe said, adding that, "We always talk about our B'ville girls' lacrosse family and how much more it is than just playing the games."

Rowe said the team was able to see two of three alumni that now live in London -- Amy Chong (a '95 graduate) who lives and works in London and Kristen Malecki (an '03 grad) who is teaching, coaching and playing lacrosse for a year in the London area. Stephanie Walker, (a '01 graduate) the third alumni who the team was unable to connect with, is in the teacher exchange program and coaches and plays lacrosse in London.

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