The senior attack, who set a school lacrosse record for the fastest to 100 career goals (in 39 games), has 281 career points (as of April 22) and is leading the Hurricanes this season in both goals and assists. A four-year starter for the Hurricanes, Carden was a starter on the 2018 PIAA Class AA state champions, and the 2019 state runner-up. Off the field at Villa Maria, she is a member of the National Honor Society, a piano student and a Peer Minister. Next fall, she will be attending Tufts University, where she will play lacrosse.
Q: What did you work on most during the past off-season? What were your pre-season goals for the 2021 Villa Maria lacrosse season?
A: This offseason I really worked on my dodging, shooting, and 1v1 attack. I tried to get outside as much as I could to spend time on the bounceback, use the foot ladder, and get in a lot of shooting reps before the season was underway. My pre-season goals for the 2021 Villa Maria lacrosse season were to assist people inside of the eight, be more of a threat in transition while getting the ball up the field, and to collectively as a team get better each time we play together.
Q: Tell us a little about your lacrosse training during this past COVID pandemic year, the biggest challenges you faced as a lacrosse player due to the COVID pandemic, and how you dealt with those challenges.
A: This past year has been very different in terms of lacrosse training. I worked to keep my fitness the same as in season by doing sprints or running with my stick, and would urge my siblings to come outside with me as much as possible while we were in quarantine to keep the fun spirit of the game. The biggest challenge I faced as a lacrosse player during the pandemic was the loss of such a crucial season. I was heartbroken because I had such strong aspirations for the 2020 season, we had a very talented senior class and I knew we could do big things with them after our first and only scrimmage. Another difficulty was figuring out where I wanted to play for my next four years in college. When COVID hit I hadn’t decided on a school, so it was hard to navigate that process and look at schools during a pandemic. During this time I learned to appreciate each time I had an opportunity to play, whether that was a practice or a game, because I never know when it might be my last.
Q: What is your favorite memory (to date) of your Villa Maria lacrosse career?
A: This is such a hard one, there are so many great memories I have with my Villa Maria team, from winning big games to just hanging out before practice. I would say that my favorite ones have been our underdog wins. My freshman and sophomore years, we faced off against really big and well known teams, Carroll and Radnor, to get into the state championship game. At that time Villa hadn’t won a district championship, and didn’t have as much recognition in being a championship program. We pulled off a pretty dominant win in both state semifinal games to secure our place. The moment after the games when I took a step back and realized for the first time that I would be playing for a state championship that weekend with a great group of people is indescribable. All your hard work has finally paid off and a dream that felt so far away at the beginning of the season was right there, the excitement and thrill in the air after those games has always been my favorite.
Q: Tell us a little about your start in lacrosse. Who have been your biggest lacrosse mentors, and what was the most important thing each of them taught you about lacrosse?
A: I started playing lacrosse in second grade, and loved the sport since the minute I picked up a stick. My favorite thing to do would be to play pickup lacrosse in the backyard with my brother, sister, and neighbor, just to set the picture there was no out of bounds and I often ran in the creek to avoid being checked by my brother. My current high school coach, Allie Mongan, has been a big mentor for me. She has taught me the value of teammates and how to be a leader. She has shown me that in lacrosse your actions on the field are just as important off the field in order to be not just a good team, but a great one. I have tried to emulate her positive, but very down to business attitude this year to reach the potential I know we have. My other two biggest mentors have been Bob Mongeluzzi and Tom Dwyer. They have helped to transform the way I play on the field, and are constantly working on furthering my lacrosse IQ, which many people forget to highlight in developing a player. They have a clear passion for lacrosse and respect for the tradition of the sport which in turn has helped grow my own love for the game!
Q: You wear uniform jersey No. 3 for Villa Maria lacrosse – was there a reason you chose this number?
A: I have worn No. 3 since my freshman year. I view 3 as my lucky number because I’m a triplet, born on 03/03/03, and 3 has always showed up in weird ways throughout my life. Also 3 is lucky in its own way – 3-leaf clovers, Holy Trinity, etc.
Q: Tell us a little about your pre-game preparation the day of a game.
A: My pregame preparation for the day of a game is to, first, the night before lay out my bags and uniform to make sure I have everything – I have learned my lesson by forgetting my skirt one too many times! Sorry mom! Throughout the day I drink lots of water, and try to eat food that is going to make me feel good throughout the game. I always make sure I have my lucky orange scrunchie because I am superstitious, and throw my hair up in a simple ponytail because that’s all I really know how to do. I like to listen to music and dance with my teammates before warmups in a dance circle to loosen my nervous jitters and get excited.
Q: What do you think you might like to major in at Tufts University?
A: I am undecided as of right now, but am hoping to pursue a degree in economics and minor in language or philosophy! I would love to one day write a book and work for women’s rights.
Fun facts – Margie Carden
Favorite book: The Midnight Library, by Matt Haig.
Favorite author: J.K Rowling.
Favorite TV show: Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Favorite movie: “Any of the Harry Potter movies.”
Favorite athlete: Allen Iverson.
Favorite pre-game pump-up song: Come With Me Now by Kongos, or Honey by 070 shake.
Favorite team: Philadelphia Eagles.
Favorite piano song to play: Don’t Stop Believing, by Journey.
Favorite place to visit: Lake George, N.Y.
Favorite pre-game meal: Cool mint chocolate chip Clif bar and a Gatorade.
Person I most admire, and why: “I admire my Dad the most because he has taught me how to work hard, and find a passion for something that I love and then run with it, whether that be on the field or off the field. He has always told me to not care about what others may think of me and to go with my heart, not the crowd.”
Family members: parents Dan and Nancy, older sister Isabel, other triplets Luke and Jackie.
(To be selected as Main Line Girls Athlete of the Week, an athlete must first be nominated by her coach.)