ReLAXers kick back for final win
VAIL – The 2005 Women’s Elite champions in the 2005 Vail Lacrosse Shootout seemed almost apologetic about their situation. Here they are, the ReLAXers – champions. They won the final game against Team Wild, 18-6, to close a weekend of cleaning house on all of their opponents. But they swear they only came here to relax. “We just wanted to relax and have fun. That’s why we came up here,” said ReLAXers’ Kara Parker, who was her team’s top scorer in Monday’s championship with four goals and one assist. “We didn’t expect to come out here and win the way we did. It feels good, but I think some people might be like, a little upset about it. We were trying to have fun. We had no idea we’d make it to the championship and just blow everybody away.”But, that’s what happens when a group of Division I players gets together and tries to relax.The majority of the ReLAXers hail from William and Mary, and the others from various other DI schools with top-ranked women’s lacrosse programs.”I’m so happy I didn’t play DI,” said Team Wild goalie Johanna Rosenfield, who recently graduated from DIII Middlebury, whence most of her team had already graduated. “You can tell these girls lift and put in a lot more hours than we do. They play year-round. We have no current players. It’s pretty obvious they’re DI. They had really well-placed shots, and it was hard to read them.”Rosenfield was in the goal for Wild the second half and had five saves, two of which were impressive stuffs. Her first half counterpart, Kendall Cox, had seven saves and both found themselves sprinting out of the crease for possession of ground balls which the ReLAXers were hard-pressed to relinquish.”We needed another r defender out there,” Rosenfield said. “I made myself the (12th) field player.”
For those who missed the ReLAXers’ pre-championship slaughter of every other team in the tournament (they had a 14-1 semifinal victory against 20 Somethin’ and their tightest game was the 16-5 quarterfinal against Detroit), the five unanswered points with which they opened the finals were some indication of how things would go. Morgan Watkins had a hat trick well before the first half finished, opening with the first two goals of the game. She then had an assist to Morgan Lang, who also earned a hat trick as the game pressed on. Team Wild’s Char Glessner was the first to turn things around for a spurt or two with the first goal from the other side. The 2003 Middlebury graduate and 2005 graduate Caitlin McCormick kept the score as respectable as possible for their team with a hat trick apiece.”We weren’t really keeping track of who was who,” Glessner said. “We were just out to have fun, and I think this is the best that Team Wild has ever done. They were awesome. They’re all current players. Most of our team are graduates, some from ’97, ’98 …”There’s a lot to be said for the bulk of the ReLAXers’ mutual familiarity and continuity. Attacker and tournament MVP Colleen Dalon put in her two cents in the form of four goals Monday.”About 10 of us played together in college,” Dalon said. “We gel together. We know what each other’s moves are, so that really helps. We’ve been playing since we were kids. Even though lacrosse is spreading all over, the East Coast is still the hotbed. When you get girls that have been playing together for a long time, you start to gel.”The ReLAXers managed to put their shots in evenly with a 9-4 halftime score. Midfielder Alexis DiDomenico dropped two goals into the net while Ali Evans and Laurice Rutledge each had one. The intensity never died for either team, but the large gap in the point spread gave little doubt as to whom the trophy would go. The spread was there just moments after the ReLAXers took to the field last weekend.
“All in all, we came out here to have a fun experience,” Parker said. “But we wanted to keep up the intensity, too. We just kept scoring and going. We had a lot of talented players that we brought out here.””We were pleasantly surprised at how it turned out,” Dalon added. “After a while, we were like, ‘I think we can win this.'”Fubar 11, Chicago 6Kristin Harvey kept up her scoring pace by leading Fubar with four goals. Amanda Chambers provided solid goalkeeping to keep Chicago in check. She finished the game with 10 saves. Late in the game, Chicago scored quickly but not enough to challenge the lead. Team Ohio 6, Detroit 4In this match of the Midwest and Motor City, it was close from start to finish. Each team had scoring from multiple players. In the end, Ohio outlasted Detroit.
Twenty Somethin’ 14, Breakaway 6After a disappointing loss in the semis, 20-Somethin’ came back hard, outplaying Breakaway. Leading the offense were Emily Helmagren with five goals and Cassie Abel with four goals.Rammit 14, CU Buffs 6 An intrastate rivalry between the CU Buffs and the Rammit team from CSU produced a feisty game. Rammit took control late in the first half and never let up. Jen Gunlikson and Kayna Whitworth had four goals apiece to pace the scoring. Sports Writer Shauna Farnell can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 610, or email@example.com.VAil Colorado