Several Capital Region scholastic products have played major roles in helping the Syracuse University women’s lacrosse team earn a berth in the NCAA Division I semifinals this weekend.
The 15-6 Orange take on 20-1 Maryland Friday at 5:30 at Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson, Md.
Three local players are starting for the Orange, including two of their top three scorers in senior Halley Quillinan and junior Tee Ladouceur, both from Bethlehem. Freshman midfielder Bridget Daley, from Guilderland, is a defensive cog.
They are among a number of Capital Region players competing in NCAA men’s and women’s tournaments at different levels.
Quillinan is the team’s second-leading goal scorer with 48, and she has 59 points. She became only the third player in program history to score 200 career goals.
“Halley is the kind of player who does it all for us,” said head coach Gary Gait. “She plays midfield, but she is also a tremendous defensive player for us. She leads the team in caused turnovers, and she’s excellent in draw controls. She’s also exceptional on the offensive end, as she’s been stepping up when we need her to score big goals. She’s a complete player.”
Gait said that Quillinan’s strength, offensively, is her powerful shot.
“She’s got one of the hardest shots in the country on the run.
Nobody shoots it harder than she does, especially outside of eight meters,” Gait said. “She’s tall, athletic and she uses her reach on defense.”
Ladouceur is second on the team in points with 88 on 43 goals and a team-best 45 assists. That point total is the fifth-highest single-season mark in school history.
“Tee is a pure feeder,” Gait said. “She’s gutted it out all year after knee surgery. She’s been a great feeder for us on offense. She sets up our offense, and she can also finish off scoring plays. That’s why she’s our second-leading scorer.”
Daley, who started 19 of the 20 games she played, recorded 18 ground balls, 18 draw controls and 10 caused turnovers. She scored her first collegiate goal against Cincinnati and also has seven assists.
“Of the three girls from the Capital Region, she is the most athletic,” Gait said. “She has unbelievable speed. She is super fast, super aggressive and tenacious. That’s why she does so well in all areas of the game, because of her superior athleticism. She’s got a huge future ahead of her at Syracuse. She’s played great for us this year. She hustles and works hard.”
A fourth area player, senior defender Rebecca Greenslade, appeared in 16 games with 11 ground balls, but she is coming off a torn anterior cruciate ligament injury and didn’t play the last month of the season.
“Rebecca was a starter for us on defense, but the injury slowed her down,” Gait said. “She’s trying to get back into play this weekend. With the rehab that she’s been doing on the knee, she might be able to play.”
Volunteer assistant coach Katie Rowan is also a Bethlehem graduate. Rowan is the program’s all-time leader in points, goals and assists and ranks fourth on the NCAA Division I all-time scoring list with 396 points. She is also third in career assists with 164. She set an NCAA tournament single-game record with 13 points and eight assists in SU’s first-round win in 2008, and followed that up with an 11-point game in last year’s NCAA tournament.
“All the Bethlehem kids we brought in wanted to play with Katie and followed in her footsteps,” Gait said. “She’s been a great role model for the Capital Region players.”
The Syracuse women’s team isn’t the only one with local performers competing in a final four this weekend.
Sipperly aids Irish
Senior midfielder Trever Sipperly, from Greenwich, will play for Notre Dame when the 9-6 Fighting Irish take on 12-5 Cornell in the Division I men’s semifinals Saturday at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Sipperly has 60 ground balls and is 161-for-289 on draw controls.
Le Moyne will have two local players, junior attack Nick DiSarro of Niskayuna and senior midfielder Bob McIver of Guilderland, on its roster when it squares off against C.W. Post in the NCAA Division II national championship game Sunday. Sophomore attackman/midfielder John Hannan, from Saratoga Springs, will be in the lineup for C.W. Post.
In the NCAA Division III championship game Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium, freshman attack Nico Cortese of Saratoga Springs will be competing for Tufts against Salisbury University.