A lacrosse ball weighs approximately five ounces, and, as any player will tell you, hurts a lot if you get hit with it. Junior Lindsay Steinberg knows this first-hand, but fortunately for her, she was not on the receiving end. With head coach Jenny Graap ’86 watching her high school team on a recruiting visit, Steinberg caught her future coach’s eye with her shot strength.
“I ripped a shot from the eight-meter, and a girl on other team actually jumped in front of it. We used to wear goggles in high school, and it hit her square in the goggles, and she just dropped back, ” Steinberg recalled.
Four years later, Steinberg is now one of Cornell’s biggest scoring threats, thanks to her powerful shot and a vast array of offensive weapons. After playing with first-team All-American Sarah Averson ’03 last season, Steinberg will now be counted on to provide leadership on attack and to help the team’s freshmen adjust to the college game.
Starting in her first collegiate game in last season’s opener against Notre Dame, Steinberg exploded for four goals. The following game, she was surprised to find the opposing defense focusing on her.
This season has been no different, as Steinberg was marked extensively in the 2004 opener against Georgetown by the Hoyas’ best defender.
“The coaches have prepared me for that, and it takes on a different strategy, where they’re telling my other teammates to pick for me more, and set me up,” Steinberg said. “In my respect, for the other girls that are such big threats on attack, like Kristen Smith or some of our freshmen that are really good, I’ll set myself up near them knowing that my girl won’t really drop off me to double.”
It is Steinberg’s great knowledge of the game and her desire to learn and improve that make her a valuable asset to the team. Watching game film allows her to see the field better so that she can create scoring chances or just take the ball to the goal.
“Lindsay’s the kind of player who just asks a lot of questions and has an enormous desire to learn the game. She’s a student of the game, she’s the first one in to the office to watch tape. She’s very analytical, she’s very X’s and O’s, and she really understands what’s going on in the attacking end,” Graap said.
While playing at the home position last season on attack, Steinberg netted 36 goals and five assists, good for second on the team in scoring. She had a career game against No. 15 Stanford, scoring five goals and adding two assists. She also recorded 10 multi-goal games in 2003.
This season, Steinberg will move to attack wing, where she will be more involved in the defense. She has worked in the offseason to increase her speed. She also worked to increase her shot power from the weak side.
“I’ll have practices where I’ll play all lefty. A lot of defenses in college are taught to play people on their strong side, so our defense will play me righty, but that gives me my left hand, and I’ll practice my left shot a lot,” she said.
With several freshmen on attack this season, Steinberg has assumed an important leadership role, helping the new players learn the offense and shooting with them before practice.
“Incorporating the freshmen into the mix is really important because we are such a young team, and we don’t have that many upperclassmen. The five juniors are all taking the freshmen under their wing,” she said.
As Cornell’s attack continues to develop throughout the season, Steinberg will play an integral role. In her two years on the East Hill, she has already demonstrated her passion and knowledge for the game and looks to help lead the Red to greater heights in 2004.
Archived article by Jonathan Auerbach