Fox Lane rising senior Eugenia Kaltsas loves the game of lacrosse. In fact, she doubts
that she will ever be able to put the stick down for good.
“I would love the opportunity to play lacrosse in college,” the midfielder said. “I’m not done with this sport yet — honestly, I doubt I’ll ever be, but I know for sure that I hope my lacrosse career doesn’t end with high school. Super excited for all the things that are to come in the future.”
Kaltsas began playing in the spring of second grade with Fox Lane Youth Lacrosse.
“I love the team spirit as well as the competitive environment,” she said. “It’s also a sport that challenges you every day since every position needs both endurance and grit.”
Kaltsas continued, “On defense, you’re helping with clears and constantly forced to adapt to uncomfortable situations like man down. On attack, you’re forcing rides and redefending. On midfield, you’re constantly running up and down the field, switching at a moment’s notice from attacker mentality to defender mentality.”
She added jokingly, “Of course, the awesome tan lines you get are also definitely a plus.”
If you are sensing that Kaltsas has a high motor, you are correct.
“If I were to describe myself as a lacrosse player, I would say energetic and gritty,” she said. “I’m always super excited for games. I like getting everyone amped up and in game mentality. It’s great to be an influential part of something bigger than yourself.”
She also said she loves “the ‘down and dirty’ parts of lacrosse. Fighting for ground balls, running out of double teams, riding girls on attack — all of these things are 70% hard work, 30% skill. I love the fact that effort is such a big part of lacrosse because it really helps with my mentality overall, whether that’s on the lax field or in a classroom.”
“My strengths as a lacrosse player are that I’m aggressive, fast, and never outworked,” Kaltsas commented. “So much of this sport is effort both on and off the field. How many hours you put into it working on your stick skills and endurance are your choice. How hard you hustle on the field is your choice.”
At times, she continued, she sees weakness in “my mental game after making mistakes. Sometime when a game isn’t going my way, it’s easy to get down on myself or overly frustrated. However, to improve this I’ve been doing my best to focus on the next play and the next moments, instead of looking to past moments in the game.”
And head coach Bill Broggy has been able to coax the best out of Kaltsas.
“Coach Broggy is the person who first convinced me I could be a good lacrosse player,” Kaltsas said. “I was a pretty shy kid when I was younger, so a sport like lacrosse where you need to be loud and confident was not where I was originally most comfortable.”
The coach also was “the first person outside my dad to tell me I had the potential to be a college lacrosse player,” she stated. “He’s the one who first pushed me to get aggressive and confident on the field, and he showed me how fun lacrosse really is. Coach Broggy helped make me who I am today as an athlete.”
An attacker through her younger lacrosse days, Kaltsas was switched to midfield in seventh grade.
“My go-to move to beat a defender is a stutter step right with a head fake, then switching to my left for the split dodge and a shot,” she said. “I also love good old-fashioned pull dodges, but the stutter step split is my favorite since it usually has the defender confused and probably going the wrong way since you faked them out. It also clears a lane for you to dodge, as well as allows you to work both right and left hands.”
A standout highlight was the goal she scored to win in an overtime game in her freshman year. “The moment wasn’t special because I scored the goal,” she explained, “The moment was special because it was an end to one of the toughest games my teammates and I had fought through together, and I got to be a part of that.”
She added, “The fact that we made it through and came out winners on the other side” is what sticks with her. “I’m super proud of this team for that, and it reminds me what type of team Fox lane really is — a hardworking group of awesome girls who work hard for each other and win for each other.”
Kaltsas was excited to get the chance to have a season this past spring and is looking ahead to bigger and better things this coming year.
“I cannot emphasize how pumped I was to play lax this spring,” she said. “I missed this sport and my team and coach a huge amount. There’s nothing like being back, and I really, really hope it stays this way. I was so excited to be able to get to work with the seniors one last time.”
Assessing her season’s performance, Kaltsas commented, “I had successes in some areas and failures in some areas. I’m super excited to take what I learned this year and apply it to next year so I can benefit my team.” Positives came mainly in “the off season work I trained hard in and my team’s efforts to help me be the best player I can be. I’m looking forward to improving this summer and next spring.”
And preparing for this coming season is paramount to possible success.
“Off season work, off season work, off season work,” Kaltsas stressed. “We didn’t really get a preseason this year, so I’m excited to really buckle down and get working with my team. I’m going to be organizing a bunch of preseason practices so that when gametime comes, we’ll be ready.”
She added, “My goals for next year are to emphasize going to the left and to push the team to leave their comfort zones. I want my team to be energetic, aggressive and gritty. My personal goals are to become a stronger off stick side player and be the best leader I can be.”