Sarah Hartigan could have made history a lot sooner.
Instead, she wanted to do it the right way.
Hartigan is a senior on the St. Hubert High School lacrosse team and last week she had a special week. She entered Wednesday’s game against Hallahan 16 goals away from becoming the all-time leading scorer at the school and she quickly poured in 10 goals. She had time to score more, but she asked to come out of the game.
The next day she found herself within striking distance of the record in a game against Neshaminy, but she played it like any other game.
“She never wanted it to be about her, she wanted to play our game,” said Bambies coach Theresa Gorman, who also coaches Hartigan in field hockey. “She was passing it to her teammates and playing the way we always play. I think that shows how unselfish she is. She was setting her teammates up when she could have just gone for the record.”
That makes Hartigan’s achievement even more special.
On May 1, the Bambies beat the Redskins as Hartigan scored career goal No. 164, giving her the school’s record. The record was previously held by Emily Smith, who graduated in 2015.
She finished the regular season with 66 goals on the season, which is a school record and heads into the playoffs with 177. The Bambies will meet Archbishop Wood in a first-round playoff game that was played after the Times went to press.
Getting her name in the record books at her school means a lot according to Hartigan, but not because it gets her recognition as one of the best lacrosse players in school history.
“I broke this because of hard work of my teammates, my coaches and my parents,” said Hartigan, who lives in Torresdale, after the 12-7 nonleague victory. “This isn’t an individual record. If they didn’t do everything to help me, I wouldn’t have broken it.
“It feels really good because I really love the school. St. Hubert’s is a great school. It means a lot to me, so it is special to set a school record.”
Hartigan’s best sport is lacrosse. Next year, she’s going to play on the Holy Family University team, and she does compete in a fall league. But she stays busy in other sports, too.
She’s a midfielder on the Bambies’ field hockey team, and she starts at point guard on the basketball team.
“It’s not hard for me to get in shape because I play on weekends in a fall league so I stay in lacrosse shape even during the offseason,” Hartigan said. “I love all three sports, but lacrosse is my best sport. I played the others because I love it and I wanted to play for my school.”
Hartigan doesn’t just bring talent to her teams.
She is also a very good leader.
She was a captain of all three of her teams, and was a captain as a junior in field hockey and lacrosse.
On this year’s lacrosse team, as she helped lead the Bambies to a fifth-place finish in the Catholic League during the regular season, her leadership skills were just as important as her goal scoring. The Bambies start a lot of sophomores, and while they’re talented, they don’t have a lot of experience playing varsity lacrosse. That’s where Hartigan comes in.
“I like helping the younger players, especially in practice because that’s where you really get better,” said Hartigan, who has been playing lacrosse since she was in sixth grade. “They’re great athletes and they’re good. They’re getting better every day.”
That gives Hartigan high hopes as the Bambies enter the Catholic League playoffs.
Her teams have qualified for the postseason before, but she’s yet to win a playoff game in lacrosse. This year, they’ll have a chance to break that streak when the playoffs begin.
Though the Bambies lost to Wood during the regular season, she was injured early in the game and was on the sideline while the Vikings earned the win. Hartigan believes her team has what it takes to turn the tide.
“We can win and make it to the semifinals,” Hartigan said. “We want to go as far as we can. I just want to keep playing with this team. When I graduate, I’m going to miss it so much.”
But she has a lot to look forward to as well.
Next year, she plans on majoring in nursing at Holy Family. The end goal is to be a nurse who works with children.
“I love children, I like to help people and I’m not afraid of blood,” said Hartigan, who is in Hubert’s National Honor Society. “It will be hard. I know it’s hard, but if I work hard, I can do it.
“I liked everything about Holy Family. I really like the lacrosse coach, it’s a good school and I can live at home.”
And since she’ll still be in the area, when she’s not playing, she’ll have season tickets to Bambies lacrosse games.
“I’ll be back a lot,” Hartigan said. “They can be as good next year or even better. They have a lot of good players who will be even better next year. I’ll be back to watch them. They’re going to be really good.”