Like so many other youngsters, Erin Wagner was first introduced to the sport of lacrosse by a poster. Having been playing soccer at the time, the Norwood resident was looking to try something new.
“After seeing the youth lacrosse in fourth grade sign, I decided to give it a try,” Wagner said. “It was the first time that I had ever picked up a stick, immediately fell in love with the sport, and have been playing ever since. I like the fact that as teammates we have to play together to have success as a team and being competitive.”
Although she has played hockey, soccer and lacrosse as a youth, Wagner still found the tryouts to be a very nerve racking experience.
“I really didn’t know what to expect, especially having a first-year coach taking over the program,” Wagner said. “I knew lacrosse and wanted to play varsity, so I needed to show him what I could do. The beginning of the second day I was still nervous, but not as bad, and then once the team was announced I felt that I could be an asset to the team.”
Playing youth lacrosse Wagner found herself as a midfielder, a position that she still plays today for Norwood High School. Coaches back then saw that she not only had the ability to play offense but defense as well, and since she was a midfielder on the soccer team she knew the job.
As a freshman, Wagner played in every single game for the Mustangs, and now as a junior, she has grown into a goal scorer for Norwood.
“Due to injuries I’ve had to step it up and score more now,” Wagner said. “I’m confident with the pace of the game and feel I work best with the defense and transitioning the ball up the field into the offensive zone. I like staying with the ball in the defensive zone and moving it up into the offense and helping set up assists; getting everyone involved in the play.”
Chuck Allen, the coach that was taking over the lacrosse program as Wagner was entering her freshman year, wishes he had more athletes like his junior midfielder.
“She is not only the heart and soul of the team playing on both sides of the ball, but is someone, as I coach, I wish I had 20 of her,” the Norwood Coach said. “She gives you everything that she has all of the time and never gives up.”
Coming into the season, Wagner was hoping to do more to help her team advance into the tournament, but unfortunately, once again Norwood was not able to progress into the post-season.
“While I wanted to score more, my main goal was to get the team to possess the ball more,” Wagner said. “As a captain, I wanted to let them know that it’s ok to take the ball to the net as well as passing it. Creating turnovers in the defensive zone allows us to transition to the offense, which is something that we have not done consistently in the past.”
With no tournament play this spring, Wagner and the rest of the returning Norwood athletes are looking to work hard during the off-season so that they come into the 2020 season flying high and earn that spot in the tournament.