STRATFORD—The Bunnell High girls lacrosse team has been nothing but consistent during head coach Meghan Letko’s seven-year tenure.
For five of the last six seasons, the Bulldogs have posted either 5 or 6 wins per season, leaving the team just short of a state tournament berth.
Getting over that hump this season is the No. 1 goal for a very athletic team looking to make its mark.
“That’s our main goal,” Letko said. “It’s something we’re striving for. We’ve made the SWCs a couple of times, but states has eluded us.”
This spring, the Bulldogs have a good mix of athleticism, experience, and youth that, with a little bit of confidence, could break through and find the state tournament.
“We have a good mixture of upperclassmen and sophomores and freshmen that will hopefully contributed,” the coach said.
Team captains include senior midfielder Maura Kelly and defenders Holly Rosa and Ally Curcio. Another leader is second-year starting goalie Tatiana Wright.
“Our three captains have been playing for a long time and another senior is our goalie,” Letko said. “The four of them have a strong presence on the field, that’s for sure.”
In the midfield along with Kelly are sophomore Morgan Reilly and freshman Mariana Trovarelli.
“They’re definitely going to be three impact players for us,” said Letko.
Up top, juniors Christina DiBendetto, Cat Nelson and Maykala Pagan lead a younger group.
In front of Wright, Rosa and Curcio headline the Bulldogs defensive effort.
Rosa has been a stalwart on defense for Bunnell while Curcio is making the adjustment from an attack spot to the backline.
“Holly Rosa is the core of the defense,” Letko said. “We transferred Ally back from attack, but she almost looks like a different person out there. She’s so confident. I was telling my assistant coach, we should have done it last year.”
As the preseason was winding down, Letko was still looking at a number of players who might play roles coming off the bench.
Juniors Rachel Ciuci, Hannah Van Etten and Brianna Vitka provide depth while sophomores Bree Carroll, Olivia Andrade, and Madison Zurlo will swing from varsity and JV.
One thing Bunnell does feature throughout the roster is athletic players.
“We are very athletic,” Letko admitted. “You can see it in our transition game. We move the ball quickly and see the open person and pass it. That’s what good teams to do.”
Bunnell is hoping to be a good team that can get over the hump this season.