By Kyle Wills
The Youngstown State University lacrosse team is looking to grow the program’s inaugural season under the direction of second-year head coach Theresa Walton.
The Penguins finished last spring 2-7 overall with all their matchups in the Mid-American Conference. The team found both its victories on the road during the season, picking up wins over University of Detroit Mercy and in-state rival Kent State University.
Looking ahead to this season, Walton said she loves how much depth the team has.
“We’re just excited to have [a] good, healthy roster size. Being at 32, we can do a full 12-on-12, keeping in mind of [COVID-19]. We just know that they need a ton of playing time together,” Walton said.
With the team’s second season set to begin this spring, Walton said she has already been impressed with the team’s dedication to the game.
“[I’ve been impressed with] their energy and commitment to the game. They’re all committed to their craft, they’re all committed to each other. It’s great to see how competitive they get out here.”
Last season, goalie Elicia Wells led the team with 115 saves. This season, however, she’ll be a part of the team in a new capacity as a graduate assistant coach.
Players are ecstatic to have last year’s leader back and still a part of the team.
“E is the best leader I’ve ever had. Having her back here is just a reminder of what we work hard for and where we’re trying to be,” sophomore Jordan Miller said.
The team announced its fall schedule and will make its debut Sep. 25 when it competes in a four-team tournament hosted by the University of Louisville at the UofL Lacrosse Stadium. They will square-off against University of Cincinnati, University of Louisville and University of Indianapolis
On Oct. 2, the team will travel to Loretto, Pennsylvania, to play in a three-team tournament hosted by Saint Francis University. The women will play Saint Francis and Lock Haven universities.
Following a two-week hiatus, the lacrosse team will make its way to Pittsburgh to take part in another three-game outing Oct. 17. The women will open the tournament against Duquesne University before playing Seton Hill University. Their last match-up of the day will be against the University of Akron.
A week later, the Penguins head to Pennsylvania again to play at Mercyhurst University on Oct. 24. YSU will face-off against John Carroll University, Mercyhurst and Roberts Wesleyan College before returning home Oct. 29 to wrap up fall competition with Canisius College at Farmers National Bank Field.
For news and updates on YSU women’s lacrosse, follow @YSUwlax on Twitter.