The New Zealand women’s lacrosse team, the NZBLAX, have recently returned from Melbourne where they won the Footscray Lacrosse International Classic tournament, against Hong Kong, the Footscray Lacrosse Club and a composite USA College team. They also competed in a separate invitational tournament against Australian state teams and England.
Meet Georgia Carter. NZBLAX player and a 2015 Auckland ASB Young Sportsperson of the Year award winner.
Georgia, who is Year 13 at Mount Albert Grammar School, is one of a small contingent of secondary school students in the New Zealand NZBLAX squad, including others from Waikato and Auckland.
Georgia has been playing lacrosse since she started secondary school. “I started playing in year nine, so I’m now in my fifth season. I started playing at school as it seemed like an interesting sport to play. I didn’t expect much when I first started.”
A good decision and one that’s already taken her overseas on several trips with New Zealand U19 and senior teams.
“With the New Zealand U19s I went to Australia in 2014 and to Scotland last year for the U19 World Cup in Scotland and we came fifth, which was really good because we were ranked 11th.
“Then with the senior women’s team in October we went to California and we played a series against some Division 1 college teams, so that was like a development tour for our squad.”
She explained that beating Japan in the U19 World Cup is a career highlight so far. “That was memorable for our whole team, as it meant that we came fifth and that is the best a New Zealand lacrosse team has ever done at a World Cup.”
There’s plenty more to look forward to. “We should have another trip to California this coming October and then the World Cup is in England next July, so making that team is a goal.”
Women’s Lacrosse is a variant of field hockey, except the ball gets passed through the air and not along the ground. “It’s a full-on, full-paced game and it’s great to play,” said Georgia. “Games are 30 minute halves, with 10 players on each side and 12 when you play internationally.”
Georgia plays midfield or attack and said if she has a preference it is for the former as there’s more running and action involved.
She said she used to play water polo, but lacrosse is her one fulltime sport now.
Her school MAGS competes in the Auckland secondary schools girls’ lacrosse competition. Georgia is captain of her school team for the second successive year. She said her team is going well so far after coming second last year to Epsom Girls’ Grammar School. “We’ve already played EGGS this year and drew with them [6-6], so hopefully we can beat them when we meet again.”
She recently stepped off the plane from Melbourne to help MAGS beat Avondale College 16-3, playing her 10th game in the space of a week.
The 2016 New Zealand Secondary Schools Lacrosse tournament is in August. Last year MAGS finished fourth, behind winners Cambridge High School, after being runners-up in 2014 and champions in 2013 in Georgia’s first year in the team.
Georgia is keeping her options open as to what she is doing next year, but said that winning a lacrosse scholarship to an American university is a possibility.
College Sport Media is dedicated to telling the story of successful young sportspeople in New Zealand