NORTH ANDOVER, MA – For the first time in program history, the Merrimack women's lacrosse team teamed up with the The Program to go through Judgment Day, a two-day, team-building camp that requires Merrimack's athletic programs to complete physical tasks while coping with mental exhaustion.
"The Program was a mentally and physically exhausting experience but extremely positive," said senior captain Liz Lyons (Westwood, MA). "We learned about each other and our capabilities as individuals and as a team."
"The program was a great experience for our team," said senior captain Christina McCarron (Westwood, MA). "It really enforced the importance of communication and working together. It was definitely a challenging two days but we were prepared and worked together and I'm proud of what we accomplished as a team."
The women's lacrosse team, which set a school record for wins last season while being ranked nationally for the first time, lost four of its top five scorers from last season and its goaltender, so going through a demanding program like this in the preseason is ideal for a team looking for new leadership.
"It was great to see girls step out of their comfort zone and into leadership roles in order to help the team succeed," said McCarron. "It's important to realize that we are all leaders on the team and can all help one another out."
"Overall, I think our team proved to ourselves, each other and the coaching staff what we are capable of as a unit," said Lyons. "We were able to hear each other out, take suggestions and apply them in a timely manner. Each time we did an activity, we discovered our weaknesses, adjusted, and beat our previous time."
Fourth-year head coach Corinne Baker was very satisfied with her team's performance in their first Judgment Day experience.
"I couldn't have been happier with the way things turned out," said Baker. "Our strength and weaknesses were shown through the physically and mentally exhausting two-day event, and we now have a great path in which we need to walk in order to have success this season. I look forward to doing this with the girls for years to come."
Lyons echoed Baker's statements and believed going through the Program in the outset of preseason is the ideal time.
"Preseason is a critical time that can really dictate the tone of the season. When things get tough or we are down in a game, we can regroup and look back at how we approached tasks during Judgment Day."
Merrimack opens its season on March 4 against Queens at Dowling before hosting Stonehill on March 10 at 4 p.m. in the home opener.