Boys’ lacrosse coach from Roxbury, NJ, will play for Italy in the World Cup

Christine Masolo must learn the Italian national anthem. This may be your biggest challenge at the Women’s World Championships in Lacrosse this week.

On the court, Masulo shouts a mixture of English and Italian. Although born and raised in New Jersey, Masullo is the goalkeeper for the Italian national team. It’s trying to channel Italian defenders into a game designed by Native Americans, using language that isn’t entirely clear to anyone.

Maybe it’s fitting for Masulo, 30, who came to lacrosse late — and didn’t dare try to keep playing after college.

Masulo grew up playing football, basketball, and softball in Berkeley Heights. She was a soccer goalkeeper, and tried lacrosse in the eighth grade. Prior to her first year at Governor Livingston, the lacrosse team needed a goalkeeper. Masulo’s mother filled out two healthy physical forms, one for softball “because it’s all I’ve ever known,” and one for lacrosse.

Delivered in lacrosse format.

“Wouldn’t it be funny if I switched into lacrosse and got a scholarship for it? We laughed,” said Masulo, a physical education and health teacher at Roxbury High School.

Masulo never played lacrosse, and sent out the game tapes on a whim. But she did get a scholarship offer from NCAA Division I Liberty University. She graduated as Flames’ all-time save leader (675) after starting 69 of 71 games. Masullo ranked top five in total saves among the D-1 goalkeepers as a freshman and sophomore.

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