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2008 Preview

Marts Center • 570-408-4019 (T) • 570-408-4028 (F) • Email

A more experienced Wilkes University women’s lacrosse team will open their 2008 season on Sunday, March 2 when they travel to Hilton Head, SC to play a non-conference game against Presbyterian College at 2 p.m. Under the direction of second-year coach Kammie Studley, the Lady Colonels are entering their sixth season of varsity play and posted a record of 0-15 a year ago.
“We have much higher expectations this season,” commented Studley. “Not only do we have more talent, but we have a lot more experience, which was something we lacked a season ago. Last year after a loss, our team would struggle to recover since they did not have a feel for winning. However, after our strong play in the fall, where we posted a 3-0-1 record, we have come together and the team is the closest it has ever been. We should have a chance to compete in the MAC.”
The Lady Colonels return five of their top six scorers from a season ago, including the sophomore sister tandem of Ashley and Justine Leggio. During their freshman campaign, Ashley ranked first on the team with 33 goals and 12 assists, while Justine ranked second with 27 goals and four helpers. Sophomores Chelsea Weinstein (nine goals, two assists) and Jennifer Powell (two goals, three assists) will also be counted on to provide firepower from the midfield position. Freshman midfielder Casandra Valentin and rookie attackers Analicia Jost, Brittney Hodnik, and Melissa Polchinkski will look to contribute in their first season of collegiate lacrosse.
Studley is looking to rely on their defense as one of their strong points this season. Senior Megan Gabardi and junior Emily Dalton return with another year of experience under their belt to anchor the low part of the defense. Freshman Shannon McDonald is expected to come in and contribute right away, while senior Elise Serembus and freshmen Sarah Stiansen and Kathleen Edwards will provide more support for Wilkes on defense.
Senior Stacy Fimmano, the all-time leading scorer at Wilkes, is making the transition from the midfield position to play goalie after the Lady Colonels lost their starter in the fall. “Stacy is really being a leader and taking one for the team by playing goalie during her senior year. She is already showing improvement and we will continue to watch her grow throughout the season after only playing one game in goal a season ago. She has not only earned the respect of the coaching staff, but the respect of her team as well,” stated Studley.
First-year assistant coach Julia Steier joins the squad to add her knowledge and experience of playing Division I lacrosse at Central Connecticut. “Julia is going to come in and make our offense even better with her experience, which gives me time to focus on the defensive side of things,” stated Studley. “Our goal is to finish the season with at least a .500 record and to come back from our trip to South Carolina with a 2-0 record. With the amount of potential we have and our drive to win, these goals are certainly attainable.”
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