BURNT HILLS — The energy MK Lescault brings to the lacrosse field is one of her top strengths.
It’s also a trait, at times, that Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake girls’ lacrosse head coach John Battaglino needs to temper.
“She’s got a great motor, but, sometimes, you have to settle her down, tell her it’s about tempo and managing the game,” Battaglino said. “Everything doesn’t have to happen at once.”
“I have to realize, too, that she’s an eighth-grader,” Battaglino said.
Only in her second varsity season, the 14-year-old Lescault has already developed into one of Section II’s top players. Heading into Thursday’s Suburban Council game against Averill Park, Lescault has registered a team-leading 40 points on 29 goals and 11 assists in leading the Spartans to a 3-3 start.
“It’s been kind of a shock to me,” Lescault said of her scoring prowess. “But I wanted to help the team more this year than I did last year.”
Lescault has done that as one of the area’s latest youthful breakout stars. Already this scholastic year, a number of middle-school-age athletes have made their mark. To name just a couple, Shaker seventh-grader Leonni Griffin surprised many with her win at last fall’s Grout Run, and seventh-grader Avery Mills starred all winter for the Mekeel Christian Academy girls’ basketball team.
Along with Lescault on Burnt Hills’ girls’ lacrosse team, fellow eighth-grader Ella Blesi is a top contributor for the Spartans. Battaglino, who previously coached the University at Albany women’s lacrosse program for seven seasons, said it’s helped both his eighth-graders to have each other to play along with this season.
“They push each other, and that’s a great thing to have,” Battaglino said. “That’s a perfect situation.”
In 2018, Lescault — a three-sport athlete who played varsity basketball this past winter and JV soccer last fall — said she often struggled to assert herself within Burnt Hills’ offense. That’s changed this year.
“Having the one year of varsity [experience] has helped me,” Lescault said. “Last year, I wasn’t much of a scorer. I was a passer, and I’d stay away a little bit. But, this year, I’m attacking the goal.”
In six games, Lescault has produced four games with at least five goals and three games with three assists. In a win against Albany, Lescault combined eight goals and three assists.
While her athleticism and growing confidence have helped her, Lescault said a large chunk of the credit for her strong season belongs to her teammates.
“They’ve helped me score all my goals,” Lescault said.
Battaglino said he sees growth each day from Lescault. That’s a trend he expects to continue.
“She’s just really eager to please. She wants to do so well. That, to me, is the best thing about her,” Battaglino said. “She just wants more and more and more. That’s the type of kid she is.”
From the end of this season, Lescault already knows what she wants, too.
“Definitely to win sectionals,” Lescault said. “We want to go to states. That’s a team goal of ours.”