No. 18/19 Women's lacrosse opens 2013 slate at Bucknell Saturday
Feb. 15, 2013
Lewisburg, Pa. - The No. 18/19 Stony Brook women's lacrosse team will square off with Bucknell in its season-opener Saturday, Feb. 16 at noon in Lewisburg, Pa.
Stony Brook, ranked in both major preseason polls for the first time in school history and tabbed as the favorite to win the America East, returns 20 letterwinners, its entire starting lineup and 96 percent of its goal scoring (252 of 263 goals) from the 2012 team that shattered school records.
Claire Petersen, a senior attacker, notched an all-time, SBU-best 101 points in 2012 on 42 goals and 59 assists, also a school record. Many of her assists went to Demmianne Cook, a 2012 all-conference midfielder who tallied a program-record 68 goals last season. Midfielder Janine Hillier, another All-America East honoree, posted 47 goals and sits tied for second with Amy Taylor on Stony Brook's all-time, single-season ledger for goals scored. Michelle Rubino, a midfielder who took a school-record 94 draw controls during her rookie year, also makes her way back to the field this season.
SBU adds eight newcomers to its roster, including a top-notch defensive recruit in Alyssa Fleming. The 5-9 Fleming, who led Shoreham-Wading River High School to the state championship in 2009, 2010 and 2012, garnered All-American and All-County accolades in 2012 and was tabbed All-County in 2010. She is a pure 1-on-1 defender who will help shut down the opposition.
Bucknell, a member of the Patriot League, went 5-12 overall and 0-6 in conference play in 2012. Arrianna Sajjad, an attacker, tallied a Bison-best 38 goals during her freshman season, while junior midfielder Katelyn Miller started all 17 games and was second on the team with 35 goals last season. Caroline O'Neill was Bucknell's primary netminder in 2012, when she compiled a 2-8 record and 15.02 goals against average.
Saturday will mark the first meeting between the two squads.
Below are notes in 140 characters or less about the Stony Brook women's lacrosse team. Feel free to share them with your followers, and be sure to follow @SBAthletics for all the news and notes on Stony Brook athletics. You can also follow the women's lacrosse team at @SBWlax and head coach Joe Spallina at @JoeSpallina.
1. .@SBWlax returns its entire starting lineup from the 2012 squad that completed the best turnaround in the nation. #loaded
Claire Petersen, the America East Player of the Year and SBU's first-ever women's lacrosse All-American in 2012, was named to ILWoman.com's preseason All-American third team.
Caridi in the Cage
Frankie Caridi will return as Stony Brook's starting netminder after posting a record of 8-1-0 in an injury-shortened season. The junior made 52 stops and had a save percentage of 43.3 percent while also owning an 8.18 goals against average.
Oh Captain, My Captain
Demmianne Cook, Janine Hillier, Claire Petersen, Jessica Romano and Melissa Rotante have been selected as captains for the 2013 season. Cook, Hillier, Petersen and Rotante are all seniors, while Romano is a junior.
He's a Winner
After turning a four-win team into a nationally ranked contender in his first season at the helm, Joe Spallina became the second SBU women's lacrosse head coach to pick up America East Coach of the Year honors. Under Spallina, the Seawolves completed the biggest turnaround in the NCAA and defeated a nationally ranked opponent for the first time in program history when they downed No. 20/17 Johns Hopkins on March 3.
Spallina added to his trophy case at the end of the summer when he was selected as Major League Lacrosse's Brine Coach of the Year for his work with the Long Island Lizards, who have since changed their name to the New York Lizards.
He came to Stony Brook after a successful run as head coach at Adelphi, a Division II institution, where he produced a dominant 73-2 mark and an NCAA-record three consecutive national crowns. During his final season, the Panthers were ranked No. 1 in the IWLCA poll and went 20-0 en route to a national title.
The Seawolves travel to Gainesville, Fla., for a showdown with the University of Florida, a 2012 national semifinalist, Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 3:30 p.m.