As a youngster, Jess Poulin used to enjoy watching lacrosse on television.

She even bought lacrosse sticks and a pop-up net to practice.

She never got to play in high school because Lawrence High School in Fairfield didn’t have a girls lacrosse team.

So Poulin played soccer in the fall and softball in the spring. She also played basketball in the winter.

She went on to become Husson University’s soccer goalkeeper for four years, appearing in 75 games, and played two seasons of softball, appearing in 61 games.

Poulin, a senior, isn’t playing softball this spring after being unable to work out some differences with interim head coach Terren Hall, but she is playing lacrosse.

So is freshman field hockey goalie Abby Greenleaf who, like Poulin, had never played lacrosse.

Poulin and Greenleaf were contacted by Husson women’s lacrosse and field hockey coach Madeline Hoeppner about the prospects of joining the team after Kaitlin Dolloff suffered a concussion two weeks ago.

Dolloff was not just the starting goalie, she was the only goalie. She will be back this week but probably won’t be able to play for at least another week, according to Hoeppner.

“I had [Husson softball player] Kayla Merrill text Jess to see if she wanted to play. Then I saw Abby and asked her to come into my office and talk to me,” said Hoeppner. “Abby said she’d play, and when I opened my door, Jess was standing there.”

Albion’s Poulin and Newfield’s Greenleaf have each picked up a win as the Eagles have gone 2-2 in Dolloff’s absence.

“They have done fantastic, honestly,” said Husson senior attack wing Abi Staab. “They have been such good sports. They have been enthusiastic. It has been amazing to watch them learn the sport.

“They had never played lacrosse, but they have been goalies, and they have the mindsets of a goalie, and that has definitely been very helpful,” added Staab.

“I think it’s an amazing thing for them to come out here halfway through the season, not knowing the sport and not even having worked with the team before,” said junior attack wing Alissa Fallon of Kennebunk. “They’ve definitely done better than I could have done.”

Hoeppner noted that Poulin had a better understanding of how to use her goal stick while Greenleaf has used her body more to make saves like she does in field hockey.

Poulin and Greenleaf are glad Hoeppner reached out to them.

“I like it. I’m having fun,” said Greenleaf. “I just want to keep getting better.”

“It has been awesome. I love it. What a great way to end my Husson career,” said Poulin.

Both rely on their goalkeeping instincts although they say it is very different.

“There is definitely a learning curve,” said Poulin. “But I’m a pretty good learner, and it has come more naturally than I thought it would.”

Greenleaf said she has learned a lot in the past few weeks.

“I’ve learned all the rules and how to take shots and stuff. I think I’ve come pretty far,” she said.

“There are a lot of basics like you find in other sports. You’ve got to play your angles like you do in soccer and scoop the ball like you do in softball,” said Poulin, who had been the shortstop on the softball team.

There are a lot of similarities between being a goalie in field hockey and lacrosse, according to Greenleaf.

“The mental aspect is the same,” she said. “The biggest difference is getting used to the zone defenses they use in lacrosse. Playing your angles is very, very important.”

Like Poulin, Greenleaf’s spring sport was always softball.

One important aspect in allowing them to make a smooth transition has been the acceptance they have received from their new teammates.

“They have been really awesome. The first day we joined the team they all came and introduced themselves. They have been real nice to me. Even when I let in goals, they don’t glare at me or give me dirty looks. They’ll say, ‘That’s OK. You’ll get the next one,” said Greenleaf.

“I’ve made a bunch of new friends,” said Poulin.

The two said having each other going through the learning experience has been helpful.

“I really like having Jess around. She’s much older, so I look up to her for advice and stuff,” Greenleaf said.

Each has a 1-1 record.

Poulin has a 6.40 goals-against average and a .600 save percentage, and Greenleaf has a 16.00 GAA and a .250 save percentage.

Poulin notched her first win last Tuesday, stopping 11 of 18 shots in a 19-7 win over rival University of Maine at Farmington.

They had shared the previous two games with each playing a half and the split Saturday’s 20-8 loss at Castleton State.

Both said their parents were surprised when they learned of their immersion into a new sport but were very supportive.

Husson will travel to Castine for a game against Maine Maritime Academy at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.