Spring Preview: Women’s Lacrosse

Ellie Huizenga

Coming off of an incredible season in 2012, the women’s lacrosse team is ready to take the North Coast Athletic Conference by storm again this year. Starting her second season with the Yeowomen aftering earning NCAC Coach of the Year, Head Coach Jacqueline McDevitt said, “The team has chosen to take the program to the next level. We are starting this year at a better foundation.”

“I think that we have more room to be creative this season, now that we’ve got the basics down,” said sophomore Kate Hanick. “Coach is trying to get us into a play mode where we don’t have to stick to a concrete plan,” she said. Hanick concluded last year’s season with 39 goals and 10 assists, earning her All-NCAC Honorable Mention.

The Yeowomen started off their season this weekend in a three-game tournament at Thiel College with two losses and one win against high-caliber teams. “This weekend was a really great test. The team did an incredible job of implementing and really rose to the challenge,” said McDevitt, who added that her team thrives under pressure.

With the addition of three first-years, the Yeowomen are looking forward to expanding their strengths. “[The first-years] are a really solid class for our team,” said Hanick. “This weekend really showed us how much we need them. The only thing they haven’t realized yet is how good they are.”

Led by captains senior Madeleine O’Meara, junior Phoebe Hammer and sophomore Bronwen Schumacher, the team has depth throughout. “The addition of the freshmen has been refreshing and their passion for the game gives the upperclassmen energy,” said McDevitt. The Yeowomen also have five seniors, including top scorer Ilyssa Meyer, who earned All-NCAC Second-Team, and First- Team All-NCAC goalie O’Meara.

The women’s lacrosse team had a recent addition to the staff with Assistant Coach Colleen Ventura. Coach Ventura came in on January 27 and has already meshed well with the team. Said McDevitt, “an assistant coach is pivotal to the success of a team and Coach V. has done an incredible job of jumping right in.”

Players are also enthusiastic about Ventura. “Once she got a feel for the team, she showed her knowledge of the game,” said Hanick. “I’m really excited to have her as a coach during season.”

With an exciting season to come, McDevitt is most looking forward to seeing her players’ ability to “beat as one.” The team’s mantra this year has been “18 players, one heartbeat,” focusing on how the team’s success relies on its unity. After a monumental season last year and a good start this season, McDevitt knows her team has now raised the bar and must step up to the new standards. With the season opening at home on Friday, March 8, against Otterbein University, the women’s lacrosse team will be exciting to watch as the season progresses.