BEREA, Ohio – The Baldwin Wallace University women's lacrosse team, under the direction of third-year head coach Nicholle Shoger, have their sights set high atop the Ohio Athletic Conference standings in 2020.
Shoger returns 12 letterwinners and three All-OAC players from last year's squad that posted an overall record of 9-7 and a 6-2 mark in conference play, advancing to the OAC tournament for the sixth consecutive season. Five new faces will also join the team this spring, hoping to make an immediate impact.
Up front, BW will be led by two-time All-OAC attacker and team co-captain Brie Martineau (Strongsville). The three-year letterwinner currently resides sixth in points, fifth in assists, and seventh in points on program's all-time leaderboards. She also had a career year in 2019, posting a career-best and team-leading 43 goals, 65 points, and 91 shots. Her 22 assists and 50 draw controls also marked career-bests and were good enough second on the team. Martineau will guide a Yellow Jackets offense that also includes returning junior attacker Alexis O'Neill (Westlake), and incoming freshman Abby Rosen (Medina).
Down the middle, BW will be spearheaded by senior midfielder and team co-captain Jordan Paugh (South Lyon, Mich.), senior Savanna Jaekle (Lockport, N.Y.), and junior Maddie Ray (Cuyahoga Falls/Akron Reserve). Ray is the Yellow Jackets' second-leading offensive contributor returning to the lineup this spring, having placed second on last year's squad with 38 goals and 87 shots, and third in both assists and points with five and 43, respectively. Meanwhile, both Paugh and Jaekle will hope to lead by example by elevating their games and neutralizing the central portion of the field for their senior campaigns. The midfielder trio will also be joined by sophomore Sid Chamberlain (Wooster), and freshman newcomers Kaitlyn Hradek (Olmsted Township/Olmsted Falls) and Nagi Reed (Bluffton, S.C.), who will add some valuable depth at the position.
On the back end, BW's last line of defense will be anchored by senior three-time All-OAC and two-time Academic All-OAC performer Hannah Stein (Medina/Highland). The reigning OAC Defensive Player of the Year and team co-captain enjoyed a career season in 2019, placing third in the OAC with career-highs of 40 caused turnovers and 94 draw controls. Her career-best 54 ground balls were also sufficient for sixth in the conference. She is joined on defense by returning senior Academic All-OAC player Erika Davidson (East Aurora, N.Y.), junior Academic All-OAC performers Ireland Flores Rae (Sylvania/St. Ursula Academy) and Christina Roskoph (Strongsville), juniors Britt Bash (New Richmond/Cincinnati Country Day) and Cassidy Prather (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy), and sophomore Taylor Nadal (Dublin/Scioto), who will all hope to make life difficult for their attacking adversaries. The Yellow Jackets' defensive core will also welcome freshman Taylor Beretich (Hutto, Texas/Pickerington North), who will eagerly await her collegiate debut.
In the cage, BW will rely on junior All-OAC goalkeeper Ashleigh Hildreth (North Tonawanda, N.Y./Sweet Home) to challenge every shot, and to provide her team with an opportunity to win in any given matchup. Hildreth garnered a 9-7 record in 2019 and accumulated career-bests of 11.21 goals against average and 46.3 save percentage. Also hoping to earn some playing time in between the pipes for the Yellow Jackets will be freshman Kyle Bliss (Fenton, Mich.).
BW will begin its 2020 season with its home opener on Wednesday, February 19, as it hosts Ohio Wesleyan University for a non-conference matchup at 7:00 p.m. in George Finnie Stadium.