C.N.’s Plujimakers sets formidable records

BY TIM MORRIS Staff Writer

Colts Neck’s girls lacrosse program is in its infancy, just four years old. However, thanks to Aurelie Plujimakers, the Cougars have established some very formidable school records.

With 95 goals this year alone and 233 for her career, Plujimakers has set an incredibly high standard for goal scoring for future Cougars to chase after.

But more important to the senior attack forward are the school records set by the Cougars. They made school history by qualifying for the state playoffs for the first time, they had a winning season for the first time (10-9), and they registered the most wins in a season (10).

“I’m really pleased with the season, the way we turned it all around,” she said. “Everyone stepped up.”

Andmost of all, Plujimakers,who had 18 assists and scored 113 points (another school record) in the team’s 19 games. She credited the play of her teammates with helping her deposit 95 goals. She pointed out that her teammates set picks to free her up when teamsweremarking her, and they delivered the passes that she cashed in on. She received plenty of scoring support from Kim Campfield (49 goals and 32 assists) and Sam Shaw (36 goals) and others, which opened things up for her. So did a well-oiled transition game that allowed her to do what she does best: get open on the run.

“I knew I had to get better for the team,” she pointed out, noting that the team had graduated several seniors. “I did a lot of summer work. I went to a lot of recruiting camps to learn. That helped me prepare for the season.”

There was also play with her Tri-State travel team that had her on the field often. That went a long way toward making the attacker more dangerous.

One camp, at Sacred Heart University, led to her signing a National Letter of Intent to the Connecticut college last fall.

During the fall, she hit the weight room to improve her strength and combined distance runs with sprint workouts for endurance. She was ready, and so were the Cougars.

Plujimakers is your classic finisher. She has an innate talent for creating scoring chances and finishing them off. Cougar coach TroyMadison said “she’s tough to stay with when she’s going to the net.”

On the field, Plujimakers has a great feel for where the openings in a defense are.

“I try and read the defense, see what’s happening, and focus on getting free,” she said. “I see an opening, a lane to go through, and focus it (the shot) by the goalie.”

A very quick first step, Plujimakers added, has been her biggest asset in getting open. So, too, is her endurance. It takes a lot of hardwork to get open. Teams don’t just sit back and give you space.

“I’m always on the move looking to break free,” she pointed out.

While the Cougars were going through their growing pains her first two years, Plujimakers played more defense than offense. One can only imagine where her records would stand if they had the talent they currently have. Regardless, she has set a very high standard that will take one heck of a player to break.