By Chris Goldberg
LILacrosseNews.com, Posted 1/16/12
PHILADELPHIA – It was a special reunion for members of the World Champion USA U19 women’s lacrosse team.
On Friday night at the Downtown Marriott, at the US Lacrosse National Convention at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the US team players and coaches were presented with their gold medals for winning the FIL championship last August in Hannover, Germany.
The US women defeated Australia, 14-11, in a thrilling gold medal game. The US was forced to rally from a three-goal deficit after easily beating the Aussies, 20-7, just several days earlier. Team USA has won four straight World titles.
Fourteen of the 18 team members were present, including four Long Island players: Maryland freshman Kelly McPartland (Farmingdale), Notre Dame freshman Barbara Sullivan (Garden City), Boston College freshman Mikaela Rix (Garden City) and Northport High junior Cortney Fortunato.
The U19 head coach, Krystin Porcella (John Carroll High, MD), said the players exceeded expectations on and off the field and credited her assistants for making the whole experience a success.
“The ring ceremony was absolutely everything I could imagine,” she said. “The best part about it was that 14 of the 18 girls are here. The most rewarding part is that we worked so hard for a year-and-a-half, and to bring it all to an end and see everyone one final time is a wonderful feeling.”
The Long Island natives gave these comments about the ring ceremony:
McPartland: “Now it seems more real. Getting our rings was pretty cool and it’s good to see everyone again that we haven’t seen for a while. It’s unlike anything else. Most of these girls have won state championships or other championships for high school, but this is the highest level you can get to.”
Fortunato: “It’s really a special experience because only 18 girls know what it was like to be there. You go through everything; the ups and downs. These are the type of memories you can’t really replace.”
Rix: “I will never forget the almost month we spent together. Growing up I never thought I would get to play different teams around the world. It was an amazing experience to see everyone again and getting our rings was awesome.”
Sullivan: “This team was so close; we were together for 3 weeks, 24/7. We built great friendships and to be back together again is a nice thing to celebrate. These are friendships we’ll have for the rest of our lives.”