In Saturday's 16-1 win over Hartford, UMass Lowell's Noelle Lambert scored the most impressive goal of the season. It wasn't a one-handed, eyes-closed spin-o-rama. It was better than that.
After a moped accident in the summer of 2016 ended with Lambert's left leg being amputated, she returned to game action Saturday and did... this:
What a scene, and what a goal.
When the accident happened in 2016, one of Lambert's first thoughts — after apologizing to her mother on the phone — was what would happen to her lacrosse career.
"Lacrosse was one of the first things I thought about because I knew I lost my leg right on the scene. I was terrified I wouldn't be able to play again."
She knew it would be a long road back if she wanted to play again.
According to Inside Lacrosse's Haley Quillinan Griggs, Lambert stayed home during the 2016 fall semester and took online courses. She still attended practices while balancing physical therapy and her coursework. In the spring, according to Griggs, she didn't miss a day with the team.
Per Griggs, Lambert's return to practice this past fall was nothing short of brilliant itself:
In her first practice back in a River Hawk uniform this fall, she wasted no time getting into the scoring column during the team’s scrimmage. Lambert received a pass near the goalline extended and swiftly placed her behind-the-back shot on goal — nothing but net.
And now, more than 19 months after the accident, Lambert's work has paid off in the most incredible way.