Leopards To Be Led By Troika In 2018

The ballots were submitted  and the decision is in, the Leopard team will have in front of them a troika of captains from diverse nationalities. Senior defender Rachel Bird from North Vancouver B.C, senior midfielder Theresa Delahanty from Washington Crossing, Pa., and junior all-league defender Lisa van der Geest from Oegstgeest, Netherlands will lead the team. All three have demonstrated skills on the field and in the classroom and are obviously well respected by their teammates for their accomplishments and leadership skills.

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Co captain senior Rachael Bird absorbs the review of the 2017 season

The first one in alphabetical order, is Rachel Bird. Rachel is a graduate of the Oaks Leadership Academy and is in her second year as captain. The economics major boasted a 3.93 GPA in the last published account. It was the highest GPA on the team and one has only to engage her,  and immediately, her intelligence and education becomes obvious. Her athletic skills are considerable and my impression is that she has that “big” hit you look for in a defender who can clear the ball. Hampered in part by injury early last year, she saw action in eight games, contributing to three shutouts. The previous year she was a key contributor on a defense that posted a pair of shutouts and allowed one or fewer goals in six games.

In 2015 the Leopards came in third in the league  and getting into the Patriot League tournament. She had a defensive save against Penn.

She came to Lafayette with significant honors from High School including Captain, team MVP, Tournament MVP and was the Outstanding Senior Female Athlete of the Year at West Vancouver. while making the North Shore First Team All Star List.

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Theresa Delahanty explodes into the Cornell defense

The second senior is Theresa Delahanty, an engineering major from Council Rock North High School. Theresa made the US Indoor Squad this past spring and was selected for the Under 21 national tournament at Spooky Nook, Pa. the training ground for the US National Team . “T” as she is known by her teammates has played in every game her entire Lafayette career. She is a fearless but smart player at midfield. She is quick to see openings and a path for the ball to get the circle. T is often near the circle and a playmaker.   Memorable goals include a goal in last season’s win against Temple.

She is a plus in the locker room, contributing to team morale and her many friends can attest to her good and generous nature. Winning comes naturally to her as a four year starter on her high school team. They reached the PIAA quarter finals in 2014. That year she was on the Courier Times Golden first team selection. She played for the Mystx field hockey club and  while in school, earned designation on the Distinguished Honor Roll from 2011-15. She also was selected to the National Honor Society  and the Science National Honor Society.

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Van der Geest on an offensive corner

The third member of this captain’s Troika is junior Lisa van der Geest. Lisa comes to us from Oegstgeest, Netherlands and went to Rijnlands Lyceum. One of Lafayette’s excellent defenders she can be seen on both ends of the field. In 2017 she was an all league selection for the second straight year. She earned a well deserved PL Defensive Player of the Week on 10/16. She led the team with six assists and tied for third with 10 points.

‘She also started all 18 games in 2016. She was first in assists on the team, and second in points. Her five assists was the most by any freshman in the Patriot League. Her success here in the United States is a continuation of her sterling career in the Netherlands. She was part of a regional championship team  who placed second in the National School Championships. She played club hockey for Leidsche en Oegstgeester.

She is no slouch in the classroom with a 3.66 average and speaks multiple languages.

 

This is an excellent leadership group who will make this team a factor in the league and beyond. I would love to see the team and especially these three in the NCAA tournament!!!!

 

 

Published by

William Rappolt

I am chairman of the Lafayette Friends of Field Hockey and a former BOT member at Lafayette College. My wife and I are members of the Board of Trustees for USA Field Hockey Foundation. I am the retired treasurer of M and T Bank Corporation and a 20 year fan of Division one field hockey

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