WINTHROP — Emma Carleton’s senior season with the Winthrop girls lacrosse team was meant to be a memorable experience from the start. Not only would she be one of the Vikings’ key leaders but it was her first season in which she wouldn’t be joined by one of her sisters Abby (class of 2017) or Grace (2018) on the field.
It’s safe to say that this year Emma has continued to make a name for herself.
“It’s been hard being without them after having them on my teams for so long,” Carleton said. “Abby was actually the leading scorer before me and I ended up being surpassing that record. It’s was good in a way to kind of get out of the shadow.”
Earlier this week Carleton added another milestone, scoring her 200th goal as a Viking.
“It was definitely something that was on my radar heading into the season after getting my 100th last year,” Carleton said. “But I was more focused on winning going into this season. It’s a big accomplishment and I’ve put in a lot of been working since 100. It’s mostly a credit to my teammates.”
Carleton deflects the credit. She’s quick to praise her teammates and coaches for helping make her success possible.
“On the field we have a talented offense,” Carleton said. “We all work together so well. But it’s really everywhere for us. Our midfield is very strong and it all starts back with our defense in transition. It’s a very supportive group, too. No one ever gets mad at anyone for mistakes. Everyone is very encouraging.
“My freshman year I didn’t have as much success on the field as I have these past few years,” Carleton said. “Sophomore year coach (Ben) Cimmino really came in and turned the program around. They push us everyday and it makes everyone better.”
The respect between coach and player is mutual.”
Cimmino applauded Carleton’s efforts in setting a positive example both on and off the field.
“Emma has been a tremendous leader for us this year,” Cimmino said. “I think a lot of people know her for all the scoring she does but her real value comes off the field. As a senior captain and leader she has exceeded all my expectations. The team is closer than ever under her guidance and she’s been a pleasure to coach for the past three years.”
Leadership comes naturally to Carleton. And it doesn’t hurt that she’s a three-sport captain.
“I was fortunate to have had experience as a leader after being a soccer and hockey captain,” Carleton said. “That helped me get the leadership role under my belt. You really just want to set a good example for the underclassmen. Knowing all the girls so long it can be difficult to talk to them like a captain.”
One of Carleton’s goals going into the season was for the Vikings to develop chemistry.
“We really wanted to be a close group,” Carleton said. “We wanted the chemistry off the field to show in our games. It has shown. We’re a lot closer off and on the field and we’re unselfish with our passes.”
At 7-5 with seven games remaining, Carleton has high hopes for the Vikings as they aim to finish the season with their best effort.
“I would like to win every game we play if it’s possible,” Carleton said. “We know what we’re capable of. We want to have the best record possible in the games we have left to play.”
Winthrop hosts Fontbonne Academy (Milton) Monday (6:30) at Miller Field.