The extent to which the oft-mentioned concept of “momentum” actually matters to most playoff-bound teams is debatable, but for an emotional team like Berkeley High, the concept is not so abstract.
All year, the Yellowjackets girls lacrosse team has tended to follow wins with more impressive play, and follow losses with the same tentativeness that caused the loss. And with league playoffs beginning next week, the ’Jackets will be eyeing today’s regular season finale against Acalanes as a chance to enter the postseason with every possible advantage – tangible or intangible.
“People were definitely upset about (Wednesday’s loss to Davis),” said BHS coach Lia Farley, whose squad currently occupies third place in league. “We had a long talk after the game (about Acalanes), and hopefully words will translate into actions.”
This morning’s 11a.m. game pits Berkeley against an Acalanes team that matches up fairly well, despite having lost the two teams’ only other meeting of 2000. The ’Jackets will be looking to shore up a midfield that struggled in the 12-6 loss to Davis, in order to exploit the team’s real strengths: attack and defense.
“The defense played well (on Wednesday), but there was a lot of potential for turnovers in the midfield, and people weren’t hurrying toward ground balls,” Farley said. “In the second half, we started rallying a bit, but the midfield was still having problems, not giving the effort they needed to win.”
“I think (the defeat) will motivate a lot of people,” added BHS attacker Jamie Lee.
With a victory today, the ’Jackets would lock up a spot in the league playoffs, which invite the top four teams. In the event of a loss, Berkeley High might still finish in the top four, but would have to await the results of other league games to know for sure.
“We need to approach (today) with a lot of intensity, we were talking after the (Davis) game about how we didn’t want it,” Lee said. “It’s up to each person to decide if they want to win.”