Feb. 14, 2014
After five days to regroup from a tough loss to No. 13 Massachusetts, the Vanderbilt lacrosse team returns to action to defend its home turf.
The Commodores welcome Liberty to the Vanderbilt Lacrosse Complex at 1 p.m. on Saturday. The programs have never met.
Vanderbilt (1-1) comes off a 13-6 loss to UMass on Sunday. Mallory Schonk, who was named the American Lacrosse Conference Offensive Player of the Week, tied a career-high with four goals. She leads the team with six goals, five assists and 11 points through two games.
The Lady Flames (0-1) haven’t played in more than a week after losing their season opener to Richmond 16-7 on Feb. 7. Liberty, out of the Big South Conference, is in its fifth year as a program. First-year coach Kelly Nangle leads the Lady Flames after they set a program record with eight wins last year.
Ending the short two-game homestand with a win is pivotal for the Commodores, who begin a three-game road trip starting next week. On Feb. 22, Vanderbilt visits defending national champ, No. 1 North Carolina. The Commodores follow that up by heading out West to play No. 14 Stanford on March 2 and No. 17 Denver on March 5.
WHEELER TABBED A PLAYER TO WATCH
Senior captain Abby Wheeler was named an ALC Player to Watch by league coaches. Wheeler, a Charlottesville, Va., native, is the team’s top returning scorer. She scored 28 goals and also had 15 ground balls, 11 draw controls and four assists in 2013. Through two games, she has two goals and one assist.
SCHONK EARNS ALC WEEKLY HONORS
Mallory Schonk was named the American Lacrosse Conference’s Offensive Player of the Week. The sophomore attacker from Perry Hall, Md., had six goals, five assists and 11 points in the opening two games.
She had a career-high five assists at Kennesaw State and tied a personal best with four goals against UMass. She is the first VU player to earn weekly honors since Kacie Connors on April 3, 2012.
’DORES PICKED TO FINISH SIXTH IN ALC
VU was projected to finish sixth in the ALC preseason coaches poll. The ‘Dores received 15 votes, ahead of league newcomer Michigan.
Defending ALC Tournament champ Northwestern was picked to finish first. Penn State and Florida, which shared the regular-season title with Northwestern in 2013, were tabbed second and third, respectively. Johns Hopkins and Ohio State rounded out the top five. This is the final season of the ALC.