Liyana Islam: “My dad put me in lacrosse in 5th grade. I didn’t even know the sport existed, but I gave it a shot. I played on a club team, San Ramon Raptors, for 4 years, and I am currently the captain of the Dougherty Valley High School JV lacrosse team, as a freshman. I have played all positions and loved every second of it. I’ve played at many lacrosse tournaments and throughout the years, I’ve realized how different and unique the sport is. Everyone has a unique skillset and that’s what really brings the team together.
For me, qualities that stand out in a teammate are positivity, good leadership skills, and being supportive no matter what. One of my favorite moments in lacrosse is getting an interception and running across the field, scoring a goal. I also love cheering my teammates on when they score or beat a defender. Some of my biggest inspirations are LeBron James, Serena Williams, and Russell Wilson. They are all amazing athletes and I admire their work ethic so much. The mentality they have is just amazing. I always try to have a positive mindset like them and to work hard no matter what. I don’t there is just one thing that’s important in lacrosse. But what’s important is having a good mentality, a good work ethic, being coachable, good leadership skills, and being a good teammate. These all have a huge impact in lacrosse.
I will continue to play lacrosse throughout my high school career. I have been thinking about playing lacrosse in college, and I aspire to play at a D1 school. Overall, lacrosse has taught me to be more strong-headed. I’ve learned to talk to different people and to work harder in everything I do. I’ve become more mature and supportive of teammates through sports, and I’ll always be grateful for that. I look forward to the future and what lies ahead! If I could give advice to an aspiring athlete, it would be that sports are all mental. Always keep a strong head and don’t let the little thing ever get to you. Use whatever it is in your life that’s bringing you down and channel into whatever you’re doing. Be positive and know that it’s okay to make mistakes. And to always cheer your teammates on!”