Driven Skovron has Liberty geared for state title run

May 02, 1994|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Sun Staff Writer

The Nathalie Skovron story is all about an incredible 17-year-old girl who has driven herself to greater heights every day on the lacrosse field.

Skovron, an attacker for seventh-ranked Liberty (12-1), is on so many missions for success that opponents have found it virtually impossible to stop her.

Her first mission is to help her team win the state Class 1A-2A girls lacrosse championship.

Mission No. 2 is to prove to coach Courtney Vaughn that she has good speed.

A third mission is to prove there is no "I" in team.

And finally, Skovron seems bent on using all her athletic ability to the fullest to make up in some small part for her father's lost baseball opportunity. Her father, Gary, was an outstanding third baseman for Northeast High and had a chance to attend the Naval Academy but he opted for marriage.

"My dad was so good," she said. "He probably could have played professional baseball. I get my talent from him."

In the first 13 games this season, Skovron has scored 53 goals, with 20 assists. The 53 goals established a single-season record at Liberty, surpassing the 52-goal season that Chrissy Primavera had last year.

This has come after an ordinary junior season in which Skovron said "she wasn't used" in the offense.

"This year, I've been given the ball a lot more," she said. "We're more team oriented this season. We all realize that we need all of us to score and play their best if we want to win the states. I mean, the better Megan Horneman, Kym Frey and Debbi Bourke play, the better it makes our team. That's why we're always happy for each other when we play well."

Sounds like a wise old coach talking, doesn't it?

No, this is a young player, and she believes every word of it.

That was evident last week when Skovron scored 10 goals in a victory over Westminster and refused to gloat on her most likely once-in-a-lifetime game. She sincerely wanted to talk about her teammates instead of herself.

And what about proving Vaughn wrong?

Vaughn explains: "I got Nathalie mad. I told her she wasn't fast. I was pulling her string a little. Now she's out to prove me wrong."

Skovron has scored so many goals since the little dig from her coach that it really doesn't matter now if she is fast or not.

"Nathalie's speed is very deceiving," said the Liberty coach. "She changes speeds going to the goal and then she will fake before shooting. She has an eye to see the whole field and is a totally different player from last season."

Vaughn also believes Skovron has been left open a lot this season because a lot of opponents are keying on the more-heralded Frey and Horneman.

Frey (37 goals, 41 assists) was the Carroll County Player of the Year last season, and Horneman was a strong candidate for that award.

Forget the deceptive speed, the changing of directions and being left open, said Skovron.

"I'm doing most of this on determination," she said. "And with the help of my teammates. We all love each other, and Coach Vaughn is very supportive of us in sports, academics and our social life."

Skovron's stepmother, Virginia Skovron, sees focus as the main reason for this super season.

"Nathalie is a lot more focused in lacrosse and in her academics this year as compared to last," she said.

Skovron has been accepted at George Mason University, which moves up to Division I for women's lacrosse next season.

"Nathalie will help George Mason right away," said Vaughn. "She's playing that well right now."

And, she will help carry on the Skovron athletic tradition that her father started at Northeast.

"He's very proud of me," said Skovron beaming with the same intensity she takes on the field.

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