Team looks to rebuild after losing top scorers

Women's Lacrosse Season Preview

Ahead of kicking off the 2020 season, the Baldwin Wallace Women’s Lacrosse team reflected on their 2019 campaign. Coach Nicholle Shoger assured that each game last year was used to build toward this year. “We left the season respecting every team we played, instead of fearing them and the team learned that we deserve to be one of the top teams in the OAC,” Shoger said. “The team was also very excited to continue to work through the summer and came back strong for our fall season and pushed extremely hard off the field in the classroom, in the weight room and through speed and agility.”

2019 began with some struggles. The team was 3-5 at the mid-point of the season, after falling to Capital University. With nothing but OAC matchups left, the team rattled off six wins in their last seven regular season games, winning with scores of 21-0 against Marietta, 20-0 against Muskingum and even winning a close matchup with John Carroll, 9-8.

They found their way into the OAC Tournament as the #3 seed but fell again to Capital 16-12. This marked the third first round exit for the Yellow Jackets in the last four seasons, having gotten past it once but lost the OAC Championship game in 2017.

The Yellow Jackets are returning some important pieces though.

On the sideline, Shoger returns for her third season, after improving from a 7-10 record her first season to 9-7 last season, the team looks to improve in all aspects.

On the field, the Yellow Jackets will have to deal with losing Hannah Albrechta and Megan Patrick, their third and fourth leading scorers respectively. But BW does return their top two leading scorers. “Teams change every year and there is no doubt that Megan and Hannah contributed a lot, but we have a very balanced attack – where on any given day 1 of the 7 can score,” Shoger said.  “As for leadership – we have returning captain Hannah Stein and two other seniors Jordan Paugh and Brie Martineau. All of them have stepped up to the challenge to lead this program in their last year here and I am confident in their abilities to take this team far.”

The top scorer for the Yellow Jackets from last season, now a senior attacker, was Brie Martineau. She led the team with career highs of 43 goals, 65 points, and was second in assists with 22. After her fantastic season, Martineau was an All-OAC first-team selection and was also named one of Shoger’s three captains for the 2020 season.

The other two captains include senior defender Hannah Stein and senior midfielder Jordan Paugh. Stein is a three-time All-OAC selection and won the OAC Defensive Player of the Year award. She led the team with 40 forced turnovers, as well as 94 draw controls. In addition, Stein was second-best on the team with 54 ground balls.

Paugh returns to the field this season after scoring three goals and recording three assists last season.

The Yellow Jackets also return a goalie that set the program record for saves in a season, and already holds the BW record for saves in a career, in just two seasons played.

 

Ashleigh Hildreth returns for her junior year, having started all 32 games of her career, and averaging nearly nine saves per game, which puts her on pace for 566 career saves in four full seasons, which would more than double the previous record of 242 by Amanda Getto. Shoger said that this gives confidence to the entire team. “We’re very excited for Ashleigh’s accomplishments – and she is very eager to improve every year,” Shoger said. “Now with her 2 year experience as a starter – I think it definitely gives confidence not only to her but also her teammates.”

The Yellow Jackets begin play on Feb. 19 with nonconference match ups to begin the season. Ohio Wesleyan and Wooster will come to George Finnie Stadium and the team will take trips to match up against Centre (Ky.), Oberlin, Randolph-Macon (Va.), Bridgewater (Va.), Lynchburg (Va.), and Allegheny (Pa.).

The team then hosts their first OAC match up, as Capital will come to BW. After a nonconference game with Kenyon, the Yellow Jackets will close their season with seven games against OAC opponents.