Women’s lacrosse coach Anne Phillips’ first recruiting class is already proving its worth.
The six members of the class of 2013, which includes four players who have played in at least 10 games for the Elis this season, have helped the Bulldogs post a 6–7 record so far this season, good for fourth place in the Ivy League. Last year’s team went 5–11, winning just one conference game.
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The departure of star attacker Jenn Warden ’09, who graduated last May, left holes for the Bulldogs to fill on offense. Four of the six newcomers have the potential to be offensive threats as midfielders, and have scored 33 of Yale’s 100 goals this season.
In addition to the four midfielders Devon Rhodes ’13, Kristen Chapman ’13, Brittany De Lea ’13 and Kelsea Smith ’13, the Bulldogs welcomed two defenders, Chloe Drimal ’13 and Adrianna Amendola ’13 to their ranks.
Rhodes, hailing from East Northport, N.Y., has made arguably the most obvious impact on the team with a team-leading 26 goals and 34 points so far this season. She is also second on the team with eight assists, five behind attacker Jenna Block ’10, who has thirteen. Rhodes came to Yale with an All-American selection for 2008-’09 under her belt, as well as five years of varsity lacrosse after playing for the high-school varsity team as an eighth grader. Rhodes recorded a record eight goals in Yale’s 17–13 win over Harvard on April 3, a game she remembers as a highlight of the season so far.
“It wasn’t like any other regular season game, it meant a lot more to us to beat Harvard than [to beat] any other team in the league,” she said. “Our team’s energy was so high from the start of the game and everyone came out ready to play.”
Chapman, a Belmont, Mass., native, has also contributed to the Bulldog offense this season. With five goals and three assists so far this spring, Chapman has continued the success she had as a player at Buckingham Browne and Nichols High School in Cambridge, Mass.
Also contributing to the Bulldog attack is De Lea, one of three Long Island natives in the freshman class. Appearing in seven games and starting in two, De Lea has recorded an assist and notched two ground balls. Plagued by illness for parts of the season, she looks forward to her next three years as a Bulldog.
“In the next three years I expect to continue to develop as a player and a as person, and I look forward to watching my teammates grow as well,” she said.
Amendola, one of the two freshmen defenders, was sidelined for the majority of the season with an injured back. Appearing in five games, she remembers the 8–7 win against Brown on March 17 as an important one for the Bulldogs.
“Not only was it our first Ivy League win, but it was also such a close game that when [midfielder] Kaitlyn [Flatley ‘11] scored the winning goal for us, we all went crazy,” she said.
Drimal, the second and last defender of the bunch, has appeared in 12 games and started in 10, recording 11 ground balls in the process.
Smith rounds out the class of 2013. Coming from Yardley, Penn., where she was first team all-league as a senior in high school, Smith has played in 10 games and scored two goals so far this season. Along with the rest of the group, Smith is looking forward to the next three years and hopes to achieve their goal of winning a National Championship.
“In the next three years our team will be on the rise, and I look forward to working for an Ivy and national championship,” she said.
The Elis play their last home game of the season against Georgetown on Friday at 7 p.m. at Reese Stadium.