Women’s lacrosse will kick off the 2011 season with two conference games this week. The team, which is returning the majority of its players from last season, is looking to build off last season’s successes. The women earned a 12-7 record, NESCAC title and NCAA appearance in the 2010 season.
May saw the graduation of seven strong players for the Ephs: Co-captains Quinn Brueggerman ’10 and Whitney Thayer ’10 finished their collegiate careers in the spring, as did Whitney Kelly ’10, Tina Nawrocki ’10, Tracey Ferriter ’10, Amy Siedlecki ’10 and Alice Nelson ’10.
“We lost quite a few starters. They had a tremendous impact on the team and they are dearly missed,” co-captain Julia Schreiber ’11 said. “Considering our senior class is only made up of two people, our underclassmen are going to have to step up.”
Williams will roster two seniors, five juniors, eight sophomores and nine first-years this season. The rookies – Emily Pavlini ’14, Emily Jablonski ’14, Stephanie Gallo ’14, Grace Wilson ’14, Maggie MacCallum ’14, Becca McGovern ’14, Courtney McLaughlin ’14, Lacey Hankin ’14 and Ali Piltch ’14 – will prove a crucial part of the predominantly underclassmen team. The squad will be led by co-captains Schreiber and Anne Marie Burke ’11.
“I think [this year’s first-year class] are the perfect class to replace last year’s seniors because, just like last year’s seniors, the freshmen are very devoted,” Schreiber said. “I truly believe we will be able to rely on our sophomore class as well. That class is very skilled, and I think they are excited about the opportunity to make a great impact this year.”
Schreiber cited another NESCAC title and a Little Three championship as two of the team’s main goals for the upcoming season. Schreiber emphasized the hard work that will go into achieving such goals. “In particular, I think one of our main goals is to come out strong and play strong the entire game, each game,” she continued. “From the past couple seasons, it is apparent that our team gets off to a fairly slow start each game. As a result, we are constantly behind and trying to fight our way back. I would like to do it a little differently this year and not make it so hard on ourselves.”
Schreiber also emphasized that the women will need to play hard every week in order to attain these goals. “Every game is going to be an important game. We proved last year that pretty much anything goes in our league,” she said. “That is one of the reasons the season is always so much fun; every game is a big game.” As last year’s NESCAC champions, Schreiber believes that a number of teams will be “gunning for” Williams, particularly rivals Amherst, Trinity and Colby.
Williams will begin its season with a brief home stand. They will play at home against Colby on Saturday at noon. The women will then host MIT at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday.