ODU Athletics

ODU Field Hockey Newcomers Feature | Part Two

April 10, 2017
By ODU Athletics

NORFOLK, Va. -- Old Dominion head field hockey coach Andrew Griffiths announced the signing of eight new student-athletes to the Lady Monarchs’ squad for the 2017 season. This week's feature will highlight Alexis Gingerich (Virginia Beach, Va./Cox) and Mary Wallace "Wally" Baker (Fredericksburg, Va./James Monroe).

Gingerich, who will play as a forward for the Lady Monarchs next season, hails from local Cox High School in Virginia Beach. With 96 career goals and 28 assists, Gingerich was named first team All-Conference, All-Region, All-Tidewater and All-State during her junior and senior seasons in 2015 and 2016 in addition to receiving third team All-American honors. She was also a standout soccer player for the Falcons, securing second team All-Conference honors and serving as team captain. 

“Alexis is a fierce competitor," Griffiths commented. "Having watched her play in state championship games, it’s clear that she is a fighter and rises to the challenge of competing to win against tough opponents in important games. She is fast, aggressive and physical, and she has the ability to be a strong defensive presence on the press. She can pass and move with an attacking unit, and she loves to finish - she has scored some big goals in big spots."

A member of the National Honor Society, Gingerich excelled in the classroom as well, having been named an Academic All-American in 2015 and 2016.

"Old Dominion makes me feel at home," Gingerich noted. "I love the coaching staff, the team, the facilities and the academic environment." 

Baker, an incoming freshman from James Monroe High School in Fredericksburg, Virginia, projects as a defender or midfielder for the Lady Monarchs next season. In her senior campaign, she was named first team All-Conference, All-Region and All-State while also racking up Defensive Player of the Year and Most Valuable Player accolades, scoring five goals and helping her team to 13 shutout victories. As a junior, Baker received second team All-Conference recognition. A member of Typhoon Elite Field Hockey Club, Baker netted 26 goals at USA Field Hockey events throughout her high school career. 

“Wally is an intelligent decision-maker who understands the game well and plays the game well," Griffiths stated. "We have watched her develop over the past three years, and she has demonstrated a focused and determined attitude towards learning. This work ethic has helped her to continuously develop her game. She can play in the back and midfield, and her awareness on the field helps her to connect and move with the other players around her and influence the game."

Off the field, Baker was a Monroe scholar all four years. She is also an accomplished musician, having racked up a slew of accolades including Gold Cups and superior ratings awarded in Solo, Concerto, American Patriotic and Folk Songs, Sonatina and Composition.

"My grandfather on my mother’s side attended ODU," Baker said. "The game changer was the staff and athletes at ODU and the Field Hockey 360 program. It felt like home. The camaraderie of the athletes, the professionalism of the coaches and the academic visit gave me a sense that this is where I wanted to play hockey and prepare for my career. There is a great tradition at ODU where I want to have a place in the future."

Stay tuned to ODUSports.com for the announcement of two more future Lady Monarchs next week. 

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