Student athlete profile

Name: Annette Ciupek

Year: senior

Hometown: Willowbrook

When did you first start playing lacrosse?

I started playing in third grade. I did a program called IGLA for a few years before I moved on to club.

What do you enjoy most about the sport?

I developed a lot of good friendships with lacrosse and that helped me transition to high school. I love the idea of a team sport. I like the competitive aspect of it and also how creative I can be in lacrosse. There are different plays, there are different things I can run.

What is the most challenging part of playing midfielder?

Probably being in shape - being able to give 100 percent on the field even when you're tired running back and forth when there has been a turnover.

What is the best advice you've gotten from a coach?

Playing on different teams with different coaches, you're going to be told different things. The best thing I've learned from Central is absorb the information the coaches are giving me and adjust to do what's best for the team. Be open-minded.

What is your goal for the season?

To win the state championship, that's the goal as a team. Personally I would say my goal is to just work on tuning my skills before college, filling in the gaps.

Any hidden talents?

I'm a really fast bear crawler. Sometimes we'll do relay races with the team and bear crawling is a fun thing coaches throw in there. I always impress everyone with my bear crawling skills.

What are your plans for next year?

I'm playing lacrosse at Cal Berkeley next year. I'm excited. I'm going in undeclared, but that's because I want to apply to the business school. I intend to major in finance and economics.

Why does coach Matt McNiff like having Ciupek on the team?

Annette is our vocal leader and our encouraging presence. She is the player that binds the team as one, and she is the reason behind our positive approaches. Not only is she a great kid and a great leader but she is a great player. I think she is a top three lacrosse player in the state and the future is bright for her. I learn more from her than she learns from me.

- profile by Pamela Lannom, photo by Jim Slonoff

Author Bio

Author photo

Pamela Lannom is editor of The Hinsdalean