By Cassie Speno, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.- The Nittany Lions' starting lineup features five freshmen that have truly made an impact on the success of the women's lacrosse program this season. Even though they are just freshmen, Tatum Coffey, Haley Ford, Cat Layne, Kelly Lechner and Maggie McCormick sure don't play like it on the lacrosse field. These Nittany Lions bring versatility, talent, speed and composure to every practice and game.
"Our freshmen have made a great push for our team," said Missy Doherty. "In the midfield with Tatum Coffey, Kelly Lechner and Haley Ford, defensively Cat Layne has been in and out of the line up and in the attacking end we have Maggie McCormick."
Coffey, a New Jersey native, leads the team in goals scored (29) and draw controls (45). Coffey also has an impressive (22) number of ground balls (22) and caused turnovers (15) on the season. In the Nittany Lion's victories over Hofstra and Vanderbilt Coffey registered 11 of her career goals earning her ALC Offensive Player of the week, Women'sLax.com Rookie of the Week, Nike Player of the Week and SynapseSports.com National Offensive Player of the Week.
Ford has also made a tremendous impact since her debut. After registering a hat trick against Northwestern, this White Hall, Md. native earned herself a starting position in both the Lehigh and Ohio State games. Ford registered a goal against Lehigh and a career-high four goals against Ohio State.
Layne, a defender from Downingtown, Pa., has started in eight games this season. Layne a talented 1v1 defender has been crucial in the Nittany Lion's success defensively this season.
Lechner has been a phenomenal all around player for the Nittany Lions. Lechner is a key presence in both the attacking and defensive ends of the field and brings a great deal of speed. In 13 games, she has scored 16 goals, registered four assists, controlled 20 ground balls and 15 draw controls.
McCormick, an Eldersburg, Md., native, earned ALC Rookie of the Week and Womenslax.com Rookie of the week for the second time this season after her stellar performances against Lehigh and Ohio State. McCormick who is second on the team in total points (42) is the quarterback to Penn State's offense. McCormick, with a team high (23) assists, ranks second nationally among freshmen in this leader category.
Together the five rookies have combined for a total of 73 goals, 30 assists, 70 draw controls and 58 ground balls. Head coach Missy Doherty is looking forward to their continued success this season and the direction in which they are going to take the program.
Follow these five freshmen and the rest of the Penn State women's lacrosse team as they close out their regular season with Johns Hopkins this Saturday and Princeton on April 28.