The Ohio State women’s lacrosse team showed that its squad might have some stars, but it takes a collective effort to dominate.
Sophomore midfielder Molly Wood started the game strong, scoring her first goal two minutes into the match. She finished the game with five goals, leading the team as it blew out Detroit 22-8.
“For me, I was just in the right place at the right time,” Wood said. “My teammates always set me up for success with all of their passes, and it’s just easy to put them away.”
OSU coach Alexis Venechanos said every game is a new challenge, and she’s thrilled that the the team stepped up to the task of its first game.
“Molly (Wood) really committed herself in the offseason because she wanted to be a versatile player for us, and she’s finishing the ball well,” Venechanos said. “It’s really exciting that we have so many new people stepping up, and we have to keep this theme going.”
Rainey Hodgson, a senior attackman for the Buckeyes (1-0), also played a vital role with two goals and four assists on Saturday. Venechanos said she’s always stepped up when the team has needed her.
“Rainey (Hodgson) has always been a solid player for us,” Venechanos said. “Last year she had more of a supportive role, but today she facilitated a lot of goals and we’re looking at her to be our quarterback this season.”
Detroit (0-1) always comes to attack, with many skilled players from the U.S. and Canada, Venechanos said. Even so, OSU was able to overcome that with efficiency.
“The players gave us some matchup that we had to be ready for and their goalie played well,” Venechanos said. “We were efficient in the attacking end, and I think that gave us confidence and momentum throughout the midfield and defense.”
Wood said it was important to show that the team is back and better than ever from graduating some vital players last season.
“We have two really tough games coming up, and I think it’s really important that we put up a lot of goals today,” Wood said. “We showed that we can play with the big teams and we’re ready to be in the top 20.”
Hodgson said Venechanos focuses on having the players play like it’s their last game, which helps the energy and tenacity for the Buckeyes.
“We had to make a statement today but focusing on ourselves, and we saw a lot of things today that we need to work on whether it’s sharpening up passes or locking in on offensive movement,” Hodgson said. “Being about to work on that as a team will sharpen the sword for our next few games.”
Venechanos said the team is looking forward to use the positives from this win to clean up defensively as they head into their first away trip next week.
“We gave up one too many goals back there today, but we’re going to work on that this week and get to the bottom of it,” Venechanos said. “We have a lot of new people in the lineup, and this win gives us confidence to get win No. 2 on Friday.”
OSU will be looking to continue its unbeaten start to the season as it gets set to travel to Berkeley, California, on Friday to face California. The game is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.