New England Lacrosse Journal - April 2017 - 16
Division 1 Women
Continued from Page 16
16 NEW ENGLAND LACROSSE JOURNAL April 2017
ABOVE: Ela Hazar (Westwood,
Mass.) is on pace to reach the
70-point mark this season.
LEFT: Caylee Waters (Darien,
Conn.) is a two-time National Goalie
of the Year and member of the
2015-16 U.S. national team.
respectively - were shooting on
Waters. They were, as Holman put
it, ripping balls on Waters and she
saved the vast majority of them.
That type of story, though,
Holman said, has become commonplace.
"What alludes to Caylee's
success is her motivation and
her drive to not only get herself
better, but to help her teammates get better," Holman said.
"Every single day, whenever I
need somebody to shoot on,
whenever I need someone to go
the extra mile, she's always the
first person to volunteer. She's
always the first person to want to
stay after practice."
That selflessness was echoed
by Levy, who added that Waters' biggest contribution is her
positive energy, her willingness
to help others reach their best.
And Holman went a step further
when reflecting on UNC's title
run last year.
Waters was relegated to the
sideline for the national-championship 13-7 win over Maryland
at Talen Energy Stadium, the
home of Major League Soccer's
Philadelphia Union. Levy gave
the starting nod to then-senior
Megan Ward, and Waters put
aside pride for the greater good
of the team.
"The whole thing with Megan and the playing time, that's
just her toughness coming out,"
Holman said. "Even though she
couldn't be on the field in the national championship, it did not
show one ounce on her face how
much that probably hurt inside."
The two can't help but reflect
on what led to their journey south
- and just how far they've come.
Hazar heaped credit onto her
Westwood High School coach,
Leslie Frank, and her Mass Elite
coaches for instilling values
- self-discipline, chemistry with
teammates and high standards.
Now 2½ years removed from
trading in her Massachusetts
roots for Carolina blue and white,
Hazar said those pillars are playing out at the collegiate level.
"I'm with 35 completely different people from all over the country, and it's exciting learning how
to work with different people and
what they're good at and what
they're not good at," Hazar said.
"Choosing schools, it was always
going to be the best balance between academics and athletics.
It's been a challenge here, but it's
a great school and the record of
UNC lacrosse is amazing."
With Waters, her reflections
cover a slightly broader scope, especially with graduation nearing.
She recalled her freshman
season, when her focus centered
around easing the transition
from college to high school.
Then, as she traversed this fouryear journey, she said her shyness in practice disappeared and
she blossomed into the positive
leader her coaches and teammates now rave about.
Waters says she's just living
out a "dream come true."
"As a little kid you always say,
'Oh, yeah, I want to go to this
college or that college,'" Waters
said. "To actually go to UNC,
when not many people in my
town are there, it's pretty exciting. I knew I'd be experiencing
something that not many other
people had, and that culture and
the camaraderie within the Chapel Hill community as a whole."
Still, Hazar and Waters make
no secret of what they dream of
in 2017: another national title.
Getting there, of course, will be a
tall task, but the duo said a meeting from earlier this year has
Jay Bilas, a college basketball analyst for ESPN and Duke
alumnus, visited and said that
UNC may be the defending national champion, but that's in the
past now. That message particularly stuck with Waters, who said
that the Tar Heels are tackling
their new endeavor one practice,
one game at a time.
"We can't just think of it as
we're just defending this," Waters said. "We want to win it. It's
not being passive about it. That's
stuck with us as a message."
Added Hazar: "It's putting
the pieces together, and as long
as I know we're getting better or
one little thing here and there,
that's comforting in and of itself.
I know we're capable of a lot, so
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