Lakeland Looks to Continue Dynastic Run

Kelsey McCrudden, right, is a leader at midfield for the Hornets.

SHRUB OAK, N.Y. - There have been plenty of dynasties throughout the history of sports and one that is right at the top of the list is Lakeland field hockey.

Last year the Section 1 champion Hornets finished 20-0-2 and defeated Section 8 champion Garden City 1-0 in the Class B state title game to earn their eighth straight state title (2009-2016), all in Class B, and 11th in the school’s illustrious history, as Lakeland has also won three state titles in Class A (2006, 2003, 1990).

Lakeland has been so dominant, it hasn’t suffered a loss since a 2-0 setback at Darien (Connecticut) on Oct. 20, 2012, with the last New York State team to defeat the Hornets being Putnam Valley in the Section 1 Class B title game on Nov. 1, 2008, with the Tigers winning 3-2.

Sign Up for E-News

The above has all been under coach Sharon Sarsen, who enters her 36th season at Lakeland with a staggering 595-71-39 career record.

Sarsen said that a combination of factors have worked in the Hornets’ favor. 

“We have had great support in the community and in the families and players in our program,” Sarsen said. “The players have worked hard in and out of season, and I believe we have provided them opportunities to grow and be successful. Our athletes are driven and play to win.”

Leading the Hornets offensively are seniors Caroline Cahill (midfielder) and Kelsey McCrudden (midfielder) and junior Julianna Cappello (forward).

“I expect them to be involved in every offensive opportunity and have results in possession,” Sarsen said. “I expect leadership and will challenge all three to make players around them better.”

Defensively, the Hornets will also have plenty of talent around them in seniors Cassie Halpin (goalie), Jessica Ascencao (defender), Julia Papanicolaou (defender) and junior Emily Kness (midfielder).

From this group, Sarsen said, she expects consistent performance, leadership and direction.

Sarsen added that she doesn’t expect any newcomers to have an immediate impact this season but does anticipate her younger, returning players to provide depth and solid play.

They are juniors Julia Cummings (defender), Brianna Madison (defender), Sarah Bussell (midfielder), Kiera Wax (midfielder) and Kellie Smith (goalie) and senior Alexa Ryan (forward).

Leading the team as captains this season are Ascencao, Cahill, Halpin, Papanicolaou and McCrudden.

Each captain brings plenty of championship experience with her and their solid work ethic makes them perfect players to guide this year’s Hornet squad. The team is hoping to be in the state title game again on Nov. 12 at Maine-Endwell High School.

While Lakeland fans may already be thinking about another such trip to the state final, one reason why the Hornets make it as far as they do each season is because they keep their eyes on their daily goals, not what could be in November.

That is a formula that has obviously worked to perfection the last eight years and one Lakeland plans to implement again this fall.

“Our goals are to improve every day, play as a team and be committed to the team,” Sarsen said.

Lakeland will open defense of its state crown with two road games, 4 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 30, against Arlington, and 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 5, vs. crosstown foe Yorktown.

The Hornets are scheduled to have their home opener on their new turf field against longtime Class B sectional playoff rival Rye at 4:15 p.m. Friday, Sept. 8.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


The Hatch Act and Immigration Updates

This is for information purposes only. So, when you see headlines like the recent “Kellyanne Conway cited for two violations of the Hatch Act,” you will have a working knowledge of what it means. First off, what is the Hatch Act? This has nothing to do with Orrin Hatch, senator from Utah. Simply put, it states one cannot advocate for or against candidates while serving in an official ...

Are We All Connected?

A question that has long plagued me is whether we, as a species, have evolved in our consciousness of our interconnectedness to one another.

Influential philosophers, writers, economists and politicians have debated whether that should be our focus in the first place. Writers such as Ayn Rand (“The Fountainhead”) and her followers have suggested that our center of attention should ...

To Harrison, L'Chaim!

At long last, the smile of spring approaches, as an angry winter recedes into good riddance. Our spirit is ready to be re-charged. Damn the power outages, full speed ahead!

For my wife, Elyse, daughter, Elissa, and me, this otherwise exuberant time of year brings a confusion of mixed emotions. In 2003, on the opening day of spring, March 20, which happens to be my birthday, our 15-year-old son ...

Whose Hypocrisy?

March 7, 2018

Councilman Ed Lachterman has an unbridled First Amendment right to critique actions of the new Town Board majority and administration (Feb. 22, “An ‘air of hypocrisy’ at town hall”). But in the court of public opinion, his comments will fare poorly before those who respect objective truth.

The councilman’s political self-interest in the manufacture of non-issues ...

When It's Not OK to Ask If Everything's OK

There is this thing that I do that annoys the heck out of my family. Well, to be honest, there are a lot of things I do that annoy the heck out of my family, but I am thinking of one thing in particular.

Whenever someone is in the bathroom for what I determine to be an abnormally long period of time, I stand outside the bathroom door and yell,


I ...

Reading Across America With Dr. Seuss

Dear Dr. Linda,

I’m a school librarian and I wanted to remind your readers that March 2 was “Read Across America Day.”  Teachers, librarians and others who read with children encourage schools, libraries and parents to celebrate this day with their children. This special date was chosen because it is the birthday of Dr. Seuss, the adored children’s author. That ...

Hold Con Edison Accountable

March 14, 2018

To the editor,

I am writing to suggest that my fellow residents assist in holding Con Edison responsible for its disastrous handling of these storms and, further, to support steps that would ensure these now common shortcomings are not repeated.

Like too many here, I, my wife and three children ages 5, 3, and 8 months have been without power for more than a week. That we could live within ...

Upcoming Events

Fri, March 23, 8:00 PM

OAC Steamer Co. Firehouse, Ossining

2018 Living Art Event

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM

Jefferson Valley Mall , Yorktown Heights

Yorktown Indoor Farmers Market

Food & Drink Health & Wellness

Sat, March 24, 12:00 PM

Club Fit, Jefferson Valley

Yoga for Women with Cancer

Health & Wellness

Seton Holds First Social Fundraiser

March 14, 2018

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton school, 1375 East Main St., Shrub Oak will be hosting it's first ever Social Fundraiser on Friday, May 4th, 2018 in the Seton school gym.  Seton extends it's invitation to all to join in a night of food, fun, and dozens of raffles and silent auctions.  Entry tickets must be purchased in advance. Tickets purchased by April 6th will be $35 per person; ...