Chartiers Valley goalie stopping the opposition
When Chartiers Valley's Haley Stamerra began playing lacrosse, there was no doubt in her mind that she wanted to play the goalie position.
“I knew the boys position was similar and I wanted to one up the guys,” the junior said. “I like to be in control of what other people are doing and I wanted to be a positive presence for my team.”
A three-year member of the team, Stamerra has helped the Colts start the season 8-2 as they look for their third straight appearance in the WPIAL Division II title game.
Stamerra got a considerable amount of playing time the last two seasons, including splitting time with senior Shelby Teagardner. Despite wanting to play, Stamerra elected to keep herself out of games as Teagardner got on a hot streak late in the season, including the Colts' playoff run.
“It made (Stamerra) a team player,” Chartiers Valley coach Julie Gould said. “She was forced to split time and make big decisions. (Teagardner) would be having a great game and she would say ‘keep her in there. She's on.'”
The maturity led to Stamerra being named a team captain, a position she takes great pride in.
“I feel it is a real honor,” Stamerra said. “I like to think I will take care of the defense and the other captain can take care of everything else.”
Stamerra – along with senior Colleen Bodnar, juniors Marissa Breitstein and Maddie Kehoe and freshmen ShyAnne Toomer and Maria Stamerra – are holding teams to just over eight points per game, which places them in the top three defenses in WPIAL Division II. With the offense averaging 12 goals per game, the Colts have held six opponents to single digits.
“After (giving up) two goals, I think it is normal,” Stamerra said. “After five I am frustrated. If it gets to 10, I am enraged beyond belief.”
In addition to her athletic ability, Gould praised Stamerra's composure during games. The junior never cracks under pressure, a trait that can be emulated by the rest of the team.
“It is a huge aspect of what type of player she is,” Gould said. “She never shows that card. She might get down and hit the post with her stick after a goal but then she moves on. You never see her upset in practice or on the field.”
It is the strong composure that will help the Colts try to continue their recent success. Chartiers Valley has finished Gould's first two seasons with 18-2 records, with a loss each season coming to North Hills in the WPIAL Division II title game.
Stamerra said the team hasn't forgotten the disappointment from the 11-10 heartbreaker last season and is ready to battle for Chartiers Valley's first WPIAL title in lacrosse.
“It is the ultimate goal,” Stamerra said. “I cannot wait to get back to playoffs and hopefully win it.”
The Colts return to the field tonight, Thursday, as they host Baldwin at 7.
Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-388-5813.