Season Preview: Women's Lacrosse Turns to New Cast for 2014 Campaign

WARRIORS ENTER 2014 SEASON WITH HIGH HOPES FOR A SUCCESSFUL RUN TO THE NE-10 CHAMPIONSHIP

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. - The 2014 Merrimack College women's lacrosse team will rely on leadership to guide a young roster as the team sets out for a winning season. The Warriors finished with a 5-11 overall mark in 2013 and will return 11 players from last year's squad, including two senior class members.

Tri-captains senior Inna Hedden (Woodbine, Md.), junior Giulia Palombo (Sandwich, Mass.) and sophomore Aubrie Stouffer (Souderton, Pa.) will be leading this very talented and young core of players. With the high level of experience, first-year head coach Michael Daly has high expectations for this year's team as they aim to make a  Northeast-10 Conference Championship appearance.


Goalkeeper

In net, Hedden will be served as the team's anchor this fall as she looks to improve upon a stellar career thus far. She started 13 games in the net and finished the 2013 season with a record of 2-10. Hedden finished the season with 166 saves and posted 14.91 goals against average for the year. In addition, she tallied a season-high 16 saves in the loss at Rollins.


Midfield

Leading the group is Palomba who appeared in all 16 games for the Warriors. Palomba finished last season with 13 ground balls and 10 goals. Expectations are high for senior Dara Hayes (Calgary, Alberta) who tallied two goals, picked up 24 ground balls and 14 caused turnovers last season.

Junior Christine Keenan (Byfield, Mass.) and sophomore Danielle Riley (West Point, N.Y.) who were a key contributor off the bench last season will be another key component to the Warriors' success. Newcomers Charlotte Fitzgerald (Sudbury, Mass.) and Meghan Wiseman (Arlington, Mass.) hope to make an impact off the bench at the midfield position.


Attack

The Warriors will have plenty of depth in the attack unit, with three upperclassmen returning to the roster while welcoming five newcomers.

Aubrie Stouffer (Souderton, PA.), who played in 15 games last season, is expected to be a potential starter along with sophomore Shealyn Anthony (Stoneham, Mass.).

Stouffer was named to the Northeast-10 All-Conference Rookie Team and finished last season with 13 goals and three assists. Last seaosn, Anthony recorded two goals and scooped up three ground balls. Adding to this attack lineup will be sophomore Kayla Breton (Windham, N.H.)

Newcomers Brittany Sullivan (Norwood, Mass.), Megan Fero (East Manlius, N.Y.), Jordan Sullivan (Malden, Mass.) and Michela Salvucci (Newton, Mass.) will also look to earn minutes for the Warriors.


Defense

Providing experience on the defensive end is junior Olivia Coakley (Bridgewater, Mass.). Coakley appeared in 15 games for the Warriors, as well as scored one goal and eight caused turnovers.

Junior Kelly Metzger (Trumbull, Conn.) will be assisting the backline this season, after making nine appearances last season. Veteran Katie Martin (Lincoln, R.I.)is expected to continue to make an excessive impact on and off the field in the leadership role.  Also projected to crack the lineup at defense is freshman Clare Blomberg (Wading River, N.Y.).




The 2014 season begins Sunday, March 2, when women's lacrosse takes Findlay at Martone-Mejail Field. Game is scheduled for 12 p.m.

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