By Meghan Falconer
The sun is shining, the fall romers have returned, the spring semester is in full swing and the University of Dallas women’s lacrosse team is ready for an exciting new season. This well-balanced group of seasoned veterans and fresh recruits looks forward to an almost evenly balanced season of five home games and six away games. The players hope to have their best season yet this spring.
Senior and captain Anne Belton says she sees great potential in the team.
“We have strong, united leadership in our three captains [Belton, junior Hayley Rodgers and senior Christine Jablonsky], experienced freshmen, a strong defense, a solid motion offense, and we are planning to make big things happen with that.”
High goal scorers are returning to the team this year, such as senior Mary Hilker, who scored 30 goals for the team in spring 2014, even while balancing a demanding off-campus job. Rodgers is another high-performing player, as she scored 29 goals last season. On defense, the team has a formidable trio: senior Belton, junior Mary Frelk, strong and injury-free this season, and sophomore Mary White, who was one of the team leaders in recovered ground balls last year.
With each new season, the team brings in new players, but the new players joining the team this season are especially prepped from both high school lacrosse and the fall practices Belton ran last October. The women’s team is proud to introduce its new defensive player, freshman Jackie Barboza; its new midfielders, freshmen Patty Hahn and Erin Chadwick, and junior Colby Madrigal; its new attack recruit, freshman Julia Shinkle; and its new goalie, freshman Breda Lewis.
“Breda is really quick with her stick and brings forth a new goalie style than the team has seen from me, so it really helps to keep them on their toes in shooting practice,” Jablonsky said. Jablonsky, though dependable and highly skilled, has been the team’s only goalie for two seasons.
“We are still adjusting our drills to accommodate having two goalies and having her on the team has definitely added depth. I know the goalie position will be in capable hands when I graduate in May,” she said.
Rodgers is also very optimistic about the new players joining the team.
“Our new talent will be able to work better as a cohesive unit and have a larger presence on the field,” she said. “Hopefully this season we will bring home some major wins!”