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  • Writer's picturetgardner1167

Lady Legends Take Nothing for Granted

When someone has a lot of something, it can be easy to take it for granted and lessen its value when they acquire more of it.

After winning twelve of the last 14 Section VI girls lacrosse Class A championships, it would be easy for the Lancaster Legends to believe ending up with a title was inevitable for them.

But the Legends take care to approach every season with the same vigor and cherish every title as if it was their first.

“The leaders do a great job of instilling in the younger kids that (a sectional championship) is not just going to happen just because you play at Lancaster,” Legends coach Julie Buccieri said. “It doesn’t matter how many sectional championships we have, it’s still exciting and amazing. It’s still a gift.”

The No. 1 Legends earned another trip to the sectional final Thursday as they took down the No. 4 Niagara Falls Wolverines, 18-3, in the semifinals.

Lancaster will face No. 2 Clarence Red Devils on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. at Williamsville North High School.

The game will be live streamed on NFHSNetwork.com.

“We’re really successful because we have fun and work together,” said Lancaster sophomore Jess Notaro, who led all scorers with five goals. “On and off the field we really love each other. We’re always working to improve each other.”

The Legends got to work immediately Thursday scoring two goals in less than two minutes. Notaro had a natural hat trick to give her team a 7-0 lead with 17:33 left in the first half.

“She’s been a great attacker,” Buccieri said of Notaro. “She’s working really hard. She’s really shifty down there and has great stick skills.”

Niagara Falls’ Joey Baillie scored to cut the deficit to 10-1.

Jordan Rokitka added her second and third goals of the day to give the Legends the 13-1 lead at the half.

Rokitka, who leads the team in assists this year, is finishing a career that almost never happened. The senior tore her ACL in eighth grade after being called up to a varsity playoff game.

Not only has the co-captain overcome the injury but has made the most of her time on the field, as she’s going to be continuing her lacrosse career at St. Bonaventure next year.

“Coming back from that has been a real challenge,” Rokitka said of the ACL injury. “It’s shown me what I can really do as an athlete. It’s pushed me to become a better athlete. Every single day I think about it.”

Lancaster beat the Red Devils 16-14 on May 13 in their only meeting this season.

“They’re a good team,” Buccieri said of Clarence. “We have a game plan in place that we think is a good game plan. But we have to be perfect. We played them nervous and really tight. We have to just let it go and play our game.”

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