Sewickley Academy’s Larsen named lacrosse All-American
Sydney Larsen made up ground as a member of the Sewickley Academy girls lacrosse team.
Larsen, a junior midfielder, was named recently a US Lacrosse Girls’ High School All-American for Western Pennsylvania.
“I have only played lacrosse seriously since eighth grade,” Larsen said. “By today’s standards, that was a really late start.
“I had to work extra hard to catch up to girls (who) had sticks in their hands since third or fourth grade.”
Larsen posted 65 goals and 37 assists this season. She led the Panthers to second place in the WPIAL Class AAA tournament and on to the PIAA tournament, where they lost in the first round.
Sewickley Academy coach Chelsea Cameron said Larsen is an extremely hard worker.
“She is a student of the game both in skills and conceptual understanding of game strategy,” Cameron said. “She is able to use these assets to take over games in times when the team needs a boost.
“She hustles on both sides of the ball, causing midfield turnovers, fighting for the draw and scoring in critical moments.”
Larsen said her school and club coaches, as well as her parents, deserve credit.
“(My parents) have driven me a million miles the past several years so that I could play lacrosse at a very high level outside the high school season,” she said. “That includes driving me to practice for my club team in Baltimore for weeks each summer and fall.”
Larsen said her goal is to win a WPIAL championship.
“If along the way, I or my teammates win personal awards, that is awesome,” she said. “Because we have such limited numbers of players, it means we have to be sharp and we have to stay healthy.
“The thrill of winning against the bigger schools keeps driving us to be better.”
Larsen is one of seven WPIAL players to make All-America.
US Lacrosse breaks the country into geographic areas, with a chairperson in each administering awards. The deadline for nominations was June 20.
Among All-Academic selections for Western Pennsylvania was Quaker Valley junior midfielder Katherine Blaugrund.
Sewickley Academy senior midfielder Peter Curran made Boys’ High School All-Academic.
Blaugrund said her award represents everything to which she aspires.
“I take the concept of being a student-athlete very seriously,” she said. “It is rewarding for all of that work to be acknowledged.
“It only makes me want to work harder and push farther.”
Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.