For the first time in the Paulding County School System, there is a high school lacrosse program and it features both boys’ and girls’ teams.
The head coach for the boys is Jason Reardon and the girls’ head coach is Tony Giles.
So far this season the boys have gone 2-5-2, playing with “a number of new players that had never played before” according to Reardon. However, Reardon also said the team has made great progress this year.
“Throughout the year we have learned a lot and grown tremendously as players. Stick skills and knowledge of the sport have improved greatly,” said Reardon.
Competing against the boys this season were Allatoona, Harrison, Kell, Kennesaw Mountain, North Cobb, Pope and Sprayberry.
As for the girls, after nine games they were 4-4-1, impressing Giles with how well they have done and how quickly they picked up the sport. Giles said the team decided to coin this season as “The Season of Firsts.”
“Girls have scored their first goals, blocked their first shots and drawn their first balls. For some this is even their first experience being on a team. We have been successful because we play smart and with heart,” Giles said.
The team has competed against Dunwoody, Etowah, Hillgrove, McEachern, North Cobb, Riverwood and Sprayberry this season.
Reardon and Giles agreed their players have developed “a love for the game” and “now it is their passion.”
While North Paulding only has a JV program now, both coaches have confirmed the “plan is to have a varsity team either next year or the following season.”
Beyond North, both coaches are hoping the game of lacrosse will spread throughout the county.
“Lacrosse is gaining a lot of momentum in Paulding County. It is our hope that other schools in the county will see the positive influence it has on the athletes and community and want to start their own programs,” Giles said.