WESTMINSTER, Md. – The 2011 McDaniel women's lacrosse season was – by most definitions – a year of rebuilding. However, as has been said more than once before, the best thing about freshmen is they become sophomores.
With a freshman keeper in net about 85 percent of the time last year, head coach Muffie Bliss knows that the experienced gain by Aimee Semler (Baltimore, Md./Perry Hall) and Kate Goldstein (Amherst, Mass./Amherst Regional) will only help the squad in 2012.
The Green Terror will also return a key member of its defensive unit in Steph Nichols (Wilmington, Del./St. Mark's), who was All-Centennial Conference (CC) and all-region selection as a sophomore in 2010, to lead the defensive unit. Nichols had 14 caused turnovers and 44 ground balls last season.
Bliss also hopes that a more cohesive offensive unit will help an attack that was last in the CC in 2011 in goals per game. Paige Messersmith (Phoenix, Md./Dulaney), a junior captain, will lead the midfield as a returning All-CC selection.
Messersmith was second on the team with 24 goals and also added a team-best 55 draw controls to go with 30 ground balls and 13 caused turnovers.
Chelsea Watkins (Columbia, Md./Hammond) returns as a senior captain after netting 16 goals and adding seven assists a season ago. She also had 29 ground balls, 21 draw controls and 13 caused turnovers.
The continued growth and emergence of sophomores Mary Tokolish (Moorestown, N.J./Moorestown), Lauren McCadden (Bel Air, Md./C. Milton Wright) and Danielle DeColli (Mt. Airy, Md./South Carroll) will also be key to the success in the attacking end.
Click play below to watch and listen to Coach Bliss preview the upcoming season.