MEDFORD, Mass. – Junior Dakota Adamec and the No. 6 Tufts University women's lacrosse team are off to one of the hottest starts in program history as they sit at 10-1 on the season and 6-0 in New England Small College Athletic Conferene (NESCAC) games.
The last time the Jumbos were 10-1 was back in 2009 when they went 14-1 before losing a second game. This season, their wins have included victories over ranked competition such as Trinity (Conn.) and Wesleyan (Conn.) who were ranked fourth and 14th in the nation respectively at the time of the games against Tufts. Their only loss was to Washington and Lee, also a ranked team.
A big part of their success this season has been the play of Adamec who leads the team in points (43) and goals (35) and is third in assists (eight) and draw controls (30). She has already surpassed her point and assist total from her sophomore season and has the same amount of goals in only 11 games compared to the 16 from last year. Those numbers put her third in the NESCAC in goals and second in points.
|Adamec scores on a free position shot against Hamilton.|
Adamec was named co-NESCAC Player of the Week during the first week of the season when she tied a program record for points in a game with eight in the opening game of the season, a 17-4 win against Hamilton.
While the Jumbos are off to a great start, the heavy lifting is far from over with three of their four remaining regular season games coming against ranked opponents in No. 4 Amherst, No. 9 Middlebury, and No. 18 Bowdoin, the first of which will be this Saturday against Amherst.
We talked to Adamec to see what she thinks has led to this team's, as well as her personal, success so far this season ...
Question: The team is off to its best start since going 14-1 in 2009. How have you been able to come together as a team so quickly to begin the season?
Answer: This season we have a lot of returners and experience on the field, which has definitely contributed to how we play with each other. Since we only graduated four seniors, there were only a few holes to fill, granted they were some big shoes to fill. But, we've been able to adapt and see people step up to bring both the attack and defensive units together.
Q: Personally, you're on pace to set new career-highs in goals, assists, points, and ground balls on the season. What do you attribute this success to?
A: After having a tough sophomore year all around, I wanted to focus on having fun with the game again. My best playing comes when I keep it light and fun. I tend to get too serious with myself, which happened a lot last year, so I just spent all of the offseason falling in love with the game again and keeping loose.
Q: Recently, your team played Trinity (Conn.) who came into the game ranked fourth in the nation. Even though you were 10th, technically you went in as underdogs. What kind of mindset did your team have going into the game that allowed you all to play well enough to get the win?
A: We know that any NESCAC team is a battle, so we didn't take them lightly regardless of their rank. However, we have changed our mindset this year to focusing only on us before any game. In the past, we would really hype up games and put teams on pedestals. But for this game, we went into it like any other - putting our game faces on and getting the job done.
Q: What would you say your team's goals are for this season?
A: Simply put, we want to be a dominant force in the NESCAC. And that means being one of the fastest teams out there. We're working hard to push the pace all around the field, and it has really shown in our transitions to offense.
Q: What has been your favorite class you have taken so far at Tufts, and why?
A: Honestly, it's either social psychology or endocrinology. Social psychology is cool because it taught me how people interact or what natural/innate human tendencies are. And this may be the science nerd in me but endocrinology - hormones! - was so interesting because it showed different cycles in the body, and explained why certain patterns occurred.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do when you're not in class or playing lacrosse?
A: This is probably super lame but I nap a lot. Regardless of whatever amount of sleep I got the night before I usually end up back in my bed napping before practice or a class later on.
Q: What is an interesting fact that not many people know about you?
A: This is usually my go-to but my brother, Thor, and I share the same birthday but two years apart. So we're like twins, but not really.
Q: If you were stranded on an island and could only bring three things with you, what would they be?
A: Some sunblock, a hammock, and a knife for hunting.
Written by Curtis Stoychoff, Athletic Communications Intern
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