Each week, US Lacrosse is proud to highlight our Impact Athletes - boys’ and girls’ high school lacrosse players who are supporting their communities with special efforts during these challenging days.

US Lacrosse reviews all submissions and selects exemplary high school athletes to recognize. These are their stories.

US Lacrosse has created an easy-to-use online submission form so you can share your stories and photos with us. Submissions will be accepted through June 1.

This week, we highlight a young man in Virginia and a young lady in Arizona who are finding ways to contribute to those in need.

Christian Margita - McLean, Va.

As a player at McLean High School, lacrosse has helped Margita build friendships and a sense of community. His love of the sport led him to get a part-time job at a local lacrosse store, become a US Lacrosse certified youth coach, and volunteer with an organization, Leveling the Playing Field, that collects used sports equipment for those in need.

While the pandemic has eliminated the opportunity for in-person equipment collection at local events, Margita remains active in his service. He has been reaching out to his community through social media and collecting equipment while using contact-free porch pickups. He has been safely storing the equipment at his family’s home and will deliver it to the organization’s warehouse when they are ready to accept deliveries.

“Christian realized that when sports resume, the loss of income and other impacts of COVID-19 may affect whether families can afford to have their children return to sports,” said his nominator. “Leveling the Playing Field's goal is to give underprivileged children the opportunity to enjoy the mental and physical benefits of youth sports participation and Christian is proud to contribute.”

In the future, Margita has hopes of playing lacrosse in college and spreading his love of the sport by continuing as a youth lacrosse coach. He aspires to eventually become a head coach at the youth and higher levels.

Peyton Ross – Phoenix, Ariz.

Sadly, the Navajo Nation in Arizona has been hit particularly hard with COVID-19, with the third highest rate of infection in the United States. Hoping to help, Ross has spent the last two months building NIH-approved face shields for Navajo health care workers. Her face shields, along with many other donations brought to a Phoenix-area collection center, are being shipped to the Navajo Nation in Winslow, Arizona.

As a sophomore member of the varsity lacrosse team at Corona del Sol High School, Ross also makes time to support her teammates. After COVID-19 ended their season, the coaches ran virtual training challenges for a month. Once they stopped, Ross convinced her coaches to let her continue the challenges. For several weeks, she has run the virtual training program on her own and encouraged her teammates to stay involved, keep in touch, and have fun. 

Her ongoing contributions to this year’s team are an extension of the leadership skills she developed as a team captain on the JV squad last year. Ross worked hard to get all of the girls involved and helped provide extra support to less experienced players. In recognition of those efforts, she was selected as team MVP.

Ross’ future plans include playing college lacrosse and majoring in kinesiology or exercise physiology. She has spent the last nine months interning at the Fischer Institute of Physical Therapy and Performance to learn as much about physical therapy as she can. Ross also serves as a youth lacrosse coach and has completed the training to become a junior official.