Using Finesse For Success

Q&a Erin Laschinger, Notre Dame Prep, Lacrosse

April 30, 2009|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,

All-Metro midfielder Erin Laschinger has helped No. 2 Notre Dame Prep to a 12-1 record with 45 goals, 17 assists and an exceptional all-around game. Laschinger, 18, was also an All-Metro performer in indoor track. She won the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meters this winter at the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland finals. A 4.0 student, she is president of the school's Habitat for Humanity Club and has signed with Virginia, where she will play lacrosse and might major in business.

What was the first sport you played?

I joined the swim team when I was 3. I remember because I was the youngest on the team. The coach just threw me in the pool with the 6-and-unders and I did the butterfly. I don't think I even did it right, but I was the only little kid swimming, so I got first place in all the meets.

When you started playing lacrosse, was there a moment when you thought, "I'm pretty good at this?"

I don't think so. I don't remember being very good when I was younger at all (laughs). I mean I was coordinated, but on the rec teams, I was never a standout player. I think I started working really hard late in middle school years before high school started.

Are you and your sister Katie competitive? She went to Duke and you're headed for Virginia.

No, not really. I was just out at a family thing in Arizona [two weeks ago] and people always ask, "So who's better? Is UVa better than Duke?" They're from Cleveland, so they don't know much about lacrosse. They're trying to figure out who is better, but we couldn't say either one was.

Katie is an assistant coach at NDP. Is it easy to have her as a coach?

Yeah, I actually like it a lot because she lives in D.C., so I wouldn't be able to see her as much if she didn't come around. I think [Coach Mary] Bartel said last year how surprised she was because ... I didn't have any problem with her giving me constructive criticism. I like it because I think she has a lot of good things to say and she helps me on my own sometimes, too.

Virginia plays a traditional style of lacrosse. Did that play into your choice, because NDP graduates tend to do really well there?

Yeah, because we've always played the traditional style of lacrosse here. I've always liked the traditional style better, more playing with finesse and more fine-tuned skill, I feel like. I like the Northwestern style, but I like our style better. I guess because that's how I've always played, so I'm more comfortable. I knew that when I was looking at schools, so I considered that, too.

Do you like playing against teams that use the modern style, testing one style against the other?

Yeah, I think it's fun. When we played [Archbishop] Spalding, they had a different type of defense. It's fun kind of to prepare for it, because every game we talk about specific strategies they use. You have to use your head.

Do you know what you want to be when you grow up?

No. I really like community service, though, so after college I might want to do Teach for America or the Peace Corps or one of those kinds of things. I keep bugging my parents to go on a summer trip like that. My sister Molly went to Africa last summer. She worked in an AIDS hospital, so I always wanted to do something like that, and I was looking at different places in Africa and one in Cambodia, but my parents want me to wait until next summer when I'm in college and a little older to go off on my own.

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