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ODU Women's Lacrosse Opens 2007 Season Sunday

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 26, 2007
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Feb. 26, 2007

In 2006, the Old Dominion women's lacrosse team made a tremendous improvement over its previous year's record and the trend looks to continue as the Lady Monarchs suit up for the 2007 season. Returning 20 letterwinners, seven starters, and five of six of last year's top leading scorers, the Lady Monarchs are looking to add to the win column and contend for a spot at the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament in May.

Old Dominion returns large portion of its offense, which was led last season by Carolina Jacobs. Jacobs, one of the most decorated Lady Monarchs of recent, continued her scoring ways with 51 points, 33 goals, 18 assists, and seven hat tricks a season ago. A two-time Second Team All-South region selection she led the Colonial Athletic Association in groundballs and ranked in the top 10 in assists and points. She also made her mark nationally ranking in third in groundballs and sixth in caused turnovers. Jacobs has already made her mark in the ODU records books and this season will look to climb further up the charts after entering this season on the all-time lists tied for eighth in points, third in assists, and needing just three more goals to crack the top 10 goals leaders list.

Joining Jacobs in the scoring department will be junior Kelly Kimener, senior Ashley Stanwick, and sophomore Jessica Noone on attack. After a shorten freshmen season due to injury, Kimener exploded for 29 goals, five assists, and 34 points as a sophomore. Starting all 15 contests and finishing the season as ODU's second leading scorer, Kimener collected seven hat tricks and will look to keep up and add to her scoring prowess in 2007. Stanwick will look to end her career on a high note as she takes to the field for her senior campaign. She will join Jacobs as one of the most veteran members of the offense. Last season as the Lady Monarchs' fourth leading scorer she poured in 19 goals and two assists. Noone was chosen to the CAA All-Rookie team after serving as a top reserve. One of the first off the bench, she registered 17 goal, three assists, and 20 points in her first collegiate season and has the ability to move up the starting group of 12.

Juniors Sigrid Paulus and Kaelyn Schival, who have served as reserves on attack, should get the change to see more playing time. Both Paulus and Schival will be joined with by three Lady Monarch newcomers in Ashley Kellogg, Nicole McMahon, and Jessica Capra, who are ready to should also make an impact this season.

On the draw once again will be midfielder Katie Veneziale, who has led Old Dominion in the draw control department throughout her career. Veneziale, who has been nationally ranked in draws over the last two seasons and consistently ranked among the league's best, registered 38 last season to rank fifth in the CAA and 31st nationally. In addition to her proficiency on the draw, Veneziale was among the top Lady Monarchs attacking the net.

Joining Veneziale in the midfield is senior Kristen Truax and sophomore Brittany Washko. Truax has been consistent member of the starting line-up the last two seasons. Last season, Truax was fourth on the team in both draw controls and caused turnovers and ranked sixth in grounballs, while as a sophomore she finished third in the category. Washko will be looking to make more of an impact this year after making seven appearances as a freshman.

Bolstering the midfield will be four newcomers in Katherine Bruno, Jill Taylor, Jacquelyn Duggins, and Alana Beck.

Defensively, the Lady Monarchs return a host of veterans, who include seniors Danielle Haley, Jackie Brown, and Lindsey Belle. Haley and Brown return to the turf from injury ready to have an immediate impact. Haley was a vital part of the ODU defense before being sidelined. In her brief time as a junior, she appeared in eight games scooping up 15 groundballs and causing seven turnovers. Watch her numbers increase with a healthy season ahead of her. Brown, meanwhile, will be returning to the game after missing the last two season. Last time in a Lady Monarch uniform, Brown appeared in 15 games and managed to crack the starting line-up at one point as Old Dominion captured the CAA regular season title. Belle had a tremendous rookie season starting all 15 games in the backfield and ranked fifth on the team in groundballs. With a year under her belt, Belle will provide much needed experience on defense.

Reservists sophomore Erica Erb, senior Erica Peterson, sophomore Jordan McKeon, Karen Rudderow, and Hannah Barber will also be asked to step-up for the defense. Each saw significant minutes last season and should be ready to be called into the game when needed. In goal, the Lady Monarchs graduated four-year keeper Michelle Gannon and have two options to be the last line of defense. Sarah Larson has served as ODU's back-up goalkeeper the last two seasons. Larson has garnered experience in seeing some of the toughest competition around including time in goal against James Madison, Richmond, Virginia, and Maryland. The Lady Monarchs will also look to newcomer D'Anna Goodfellow to see some minutes in between the pipes. Goodfellow comes to Norfolk after registering 499 career saves during her scholastic career, which also saw her named the team's MVP and earn all-league and all-county accolades.

The Lady Monarchs never shy away from tough competition and the 2007 schedule should prove no different. Awaiting the women's lacrosse team this season is national runner-up Virginia, NCAA quarterfinalists North Carolina and James Madison, and NCAA participant and Atlantic-10 champion, Richmond. The Colonial Athletic Association portion will also be one of the most challenging in recent memory. Along with James Madison, Hofstra and William & Mary appeared in the final IWLCA last season.

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