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Spartans girls' lacrosse goalie Caroline Gordon earns Prep League co-MVP award

Lacrosse: La Cañada goalie finishes season with league's co-MVP award.

May 24, 2012|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com

Caroline Gordon wasn't getting her hopes up about being named the Prep League's Most Valuable Player.

The La Cañada High goalkeeper was aware such accolades are usually reserved for standout offensive players.

"It's really hard to get MVP awards as a goalie," said Gordon, who recorded 129 saves on 290 shots on goal this year for a 45% save percentage. "It's not the most glorious position. They usually give it to offensive players."

Gordon's chances took a bigger hit when one considered the Spartans finished fourth out of five teams in league with a 3-13, 2-6 in league record. Still, there was no denying the keeper made an impact on a young La Cañada squad that had graduated eight seniors.

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Thus, Gordon received the co-MVP honor along with Chadwick's Molly Mahony.

"She put in a ton of work, was the first one there and last one to leave — typical of an amazing player," said first-year La Cañada Coach Kyle Smith of Gordon, who's headed to Gettysburg College, an NCAA Division III school.

Glendale High Coach Joe Campbell can attest to Gordon's greatness.

"I like her, but I don't really hate to see her leave," Campbell laughed. "Caroline was really the lone starter left on the [Spartans] and she held them together the whole season and made some unbelievable plays. You could outplay that team and lose because she's there. She just always seemed to hold them in the game."

Gordon was one of 11 area players to garner all-league recognition with La Cañada's Natalie Wilson picking up first-team honors along with Glendale High's Jenna Nance and Elena Pierce and Westridge's Eda Ried.

La Cañada's Christine Noh and Paige Milne were named to the second team along with the Nitros' Gladiola Pelayo-Brambila and Kimberly Arroyo and Westridge's Tatum Mannion and Lili Lim.

Wilson, a senior, was another key part to La Cañada's defense. The senior recorded 14 ground balls, which was the second most on the team, for the Spartans.

"She was pretty much our only experienced defensive player all season," Smith said of Wilson. "She led our defense all season with Caroline, helped the younger girls get up to speed and picked up a lot of ground balls for us."

Glendale's offense ran through seniors Nance and Pierce, who Campbell says combined to score about 120 goals, with about 20 more coming from Pelayo-Brambila and Arroyo.

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