By Connor Linskey
Two weekends ago Lorena Rivera, a rising freshman at Valley Central High School, played against some of the best competition in the country at the Under Armour All-American Lacrosse Classic Underclass Tournament in Baltimore, Maryland.
She played in the Command Division of the tournament, which showcased players from the 2024 and 2025 high school graduation years. To compete in the tournament, Rivera first had to try out for her regional team. She was successful in her attempt and represented the Upstate New York team at the tournament. Rivera was the lone local athlete on the team, as most of the players came from the Syracuse area.
All corners of the United States were represented at the tournament. Rivera faced off against teams from Baltimore, Connecticut, Long Island, New England, New Jersey, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. as well as squads from the South, Southwest, Midwest and West. Rivera’s team held their own, posting a 3-1 record.
They fell to New Jersey in the semi-final game.
Rivera enjoyed playing in the tournament because of the high level of competition. She even contributed one goal for the team.
“It was amazing because I got to play with girls that were on my level and I’ve never really had that,” she said.
Rivera has excelled at the local lacrosse level. This past school year she led the Valley Central Middle School modified girls lacrosse team to an undefeated season. She was a starter, scored more than 20 goals and did all the draws.
Rivera attributes a lot of her success to the VC Vikings Youth Lacrosse program in Montgomery. The program introduced her to the sport and she soon fell in love with it. This inspired her to play travel lacrosse and continue to set high goals for her career.
Lacrosse is a huge part of Rivera’s life, as it helps her forget her problems. She has high goals for her career moving forward.
“My future goals are to go D-1 hopefully for lacrosse and go to a good school,” she said. “After that if I could, I’d go pro or go play on Team USA.”
Lorena’s mother Veronica is proud of all that her daughter has accomplished in lacrosse.
“It’s heartwarming,” she said. “It’s very inspiring for me as a mother to see her courage and bravery.”