Last season was a special one for the Northport Lady Tigers, and their star midfielder Olivia Carner. Carner was a true leader for the 21-1 Class A champion Tigers. Carner had long been deemed one of the best players on Long Island, a six-time varsity player and two-time U.S Lacrosse All-American for Northport, Carner was as experienced as anyone in the conference heading into her final season. She had seen the Tigers progress from a solid program all the way to the brink of a county title during her junior campaign- a campaign in which she led Long Island in scoring. The team’s success mirrored Carner’s personal growth.
As a senior, Carner racked up 99 points (62 goals and 37 assists) despite missing a game. The game she missed, happened to be the one blemish on Northport’s otherwise undefeated season. Olivia is now at Duke University playing for head coach Kirsten Kimel, a storied program looking to rebound from a 2-5 record in conference play in 2019. With Carner coming in for the next four years, the blue devils look prime for a bounce back season, and Olivia was kind enough to answer some questions for us.
Q: How has the start of college been?
It has been a dream come true being a Blue Devil! I love how Duke pushes me every day both in the classroom and on the field. I couldn’t ask for a better coaching staff and teammates. I have a very busy day between practice and class, but I love the challenge.
Q: What is different about the training in high school and college?
It’s definitely a faster game compared to high school and we train at a much greater intensity level. Beyond the physical conditioning, there is a lot of focus on technique and positioning. I love the free movement rules and not having to stop at every whistle.
Q: Why did you choose duke?
I chose Duke because, for me personally, there is no other college that can compare academically and athletically. We have great resources and an amazing support staff. From the moment I stepped on this beautiful campus I knew it was the perfect fit.
Q: What do you miss about Long Island?
I miss being around my family, friends and the beach. I have lived in Northport my entire life and it is an amazing community.
Q: What adjustments will you have to make going from a powerhouse high school program to a college team that finished .500 a season ago?
I’m now surrounded by some of the best athletes in the country and have to adjust to much harder competition and a faster, more physical game. We are very excited to show what we can accomplish as a team this season.
Q: What are your aspirations after college?
I’m not sure yet what I would like to do, but I hope to be working as part of a team in service of helping others.
Q: How do you see lacrosse playing a role in that?
I’ve always loved being a part of a team, and lacrosse is all about supporting your teammates, understanding your role on the team, and working as one unit. When lacrosse ends, I want to use my team experience as part of Duke lacrosse to make a meaningful difference in the world.
BONUS Q: Favorite meal you’ve ever had? Amore Pizza in East Northport- the best!