Cincinnati Opens 2009 Season at Presbyterian

Feb. 14, 2009

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The University of Cincinnati lacrosse team travels to Clinton, South Carolina on Sunday (Feb. 15) to take on Presbyterian College at 1 p.m. The game will begin the 2009 season for the Bearcats and marks the second season in school history for Cincinnati. The game is almost a year to date since the Bearcats opened their inaugural season on February 17, 2008.

Cincinnati is mentored by second-year head coach Lellie Swords, who helped Johns Hopkins build one of the premier women's lacrosse program's in the nation, and led the Bearcats to a 2-14 campaign in their inaugural season. Swords was elected Secretary of the 2008-09 Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association, Inc. (IWLCA) Board of Directors.


The 2009 season begins UC's first year in the BIG EAST Conference. Cincinnati played a competitive schedule in 2008 as an independent and finished with an overall record of 2-14-0. The first BIG EAST game is slated for Friday, March 27 at Connecticut. UC will play seven BIG EAST contests this season, four of them at home in Nippert Stadium.

Offensively, senior captain Lindsey Marshall is expected to provide leadership for the Bearcats this season. Marshall, who led the team in with 30 goals and 32 points in the 2008 season, is the lone senior on the squad. Sophomore Lynsey Burton (19G, 2A) and junior Shannon Lynes (12G, 2A) are also expected to contribute to offensive side.


Along with Marshall, Patty Kelly, Natalie Starvaggi and Paige Stratton are also the 2009 captains. The group of leaders provide solid experience  for the 2009 squad that includes 15 newcomers.


The added depth of freshman Katherine Russo and returner Haley Marvine will provide competition for Jen Mott, who gained valuable experience for the Bearcats from in goal last season. Defensively, Lauren Kelly and Paige Stratton return from a season of 30 and 26 ground balls, respectively.  


The University of Cincinnati's lacrosse team was recently featured in Lacrosse Magazine, where they were praised for their involvement with the community, including raising awareness for breast cancer, service with the Marine Corps Toys for Tots campaign, and involvement with the 82nd Engineer Support Company (ESC), in Camp Ramadi, Iraq.



Presbyterian is also in its second season of play after a shortened season in 2008. The Blue Hose are under the direction of first-year head coach Kristina Llanes and will build on the foundation set by  interim head coach Mike Smith last year. Presbyterian went 2-2 in 2008 and returns seven players with nine freshmen. PC opened their season on Friday against Navy, losing 21-4. Junior midfielder Jenna Handshoe led PC's offense with two goals while junior co-captain Brittni Dulaney added two assists.