Speno, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Six seniors will take the field for their last home game on Saturday against Princeton. Dana Cahill, Theresa Zichelli, Aly Adams, Brittany Chamberlain, Kelsey Hughes and Elaine Welch will be honored at centerfield accompanied by their parents prior to the opening draw.
These six seniors took time to reflect on their last four years as student
athletes here at Penn State University. These long time teammates and friends
shared why they chose Penn State and their favorite memories both on and off
the lacrosse field.
Goalie and captain Dana Cahill has established herself as one of the nations top goalkeepers. Earning First Team All-West/Midwest Region and All-ALC honors in addition to being named ALC Goalkeeper of the Year. Cahill finished the 2011 season with a 9.95 goals against average, a .466 save percentage, 150 saves, and a team-high 47 ground balls. In 2012 Cahill has been selected as a nominee for the Tewaarton Award given to the nations top female lacrosse player. Cahill's stats are extremely impressive with a 9.98 goals against average, a .514 save percentage and 149 saves.
Assistant coach Amy Altig hopes Cahill looks back on her career and is as proud of her accomplishments as all of her teammates and coaches are.
"For her, I hope she looks back at the end of this year and says I had an awesome senior year," said Altig. "All the accolades aside, I hope she is proud of herself for the progress she has made in her career. I know we couldn't be more proud of her and I know her teammates are."
Co-captain, Theresa Zichelli a four-year starter in the midfield has been instrumental to the success of this program these last four years. When you think of Theresa Zichelli the word determined comes to mind. Zichelli consistently gives 100 percent both on and off the lacrosse field. Going into this season Zichelli's personal goal was to be a larger threat on offense and she has accomplished just that. Zichelli is the fifth leading goal scorer on the team with 19 goals, and registered a notable 23 groundballs, 22 draw controls and 11 caused turnovers.
Aly Adams a native of Springfield, Pa. has been coming to Penn State for eight years now. Prior to attending Penn State Adams would come visit her brother, Drew, who was a stand out goalie on the men's team. Adams says ever since she was a little girl her dream was to attend Penn State.
"Whenever I came to watch Drew, I knew this was the place I wanted to be," said Adams. "I am so honored to say I have played lacrosse here and that I am graduating with a Penn State degree. In my last four years I have had so many great memories that I can't choose a favorite."
Elaine Welch from Bernardsville, N.J., saw action in 11 games this season with starts against Florida and Northwestern. When reminiscing on her experience at Penn State Welch remembered the first time she drove to Penn State and saw Beaver Stadium from Route 80.
"I can't imagine what it is going to feel like when I see the stadium in my rear view mirror driving home after graduation," said Welch. "This school, my teammates and the memories I have made here I will never forget. These last four years have gone by way too fast."
Brittany Chamberlain, a defender from Finksburg, Md., made appearances in eight games this season before she was sidelined for two separate concussions. However, the injuries haven't stopped her. Chamberlains vocal leadership can still be heard from the sideline. She has a voice people listen to and the defensive unit still looks to her for advice.
"I want to make my teammates around me better for the future of this program," said Chamberlain. "I want to make an impact and leave my mark even though I haven't been able to play."
Kelsey Hughes transferred her sophomore year from the University of Denver to be a part of something special.
"The best thing about this school is the amount of pride the students and alumni have for this school," said Hughes. "I love wearing my Penn State clothes and getting "We Are" chanted at me when I am at home in Maryland. I am proud to have been a part of this University and say I graduated from Penn State with 'Success with Honor'."
These six seniors have one last wish before they leave and that is to win the ALC tournament title and make it the NCAA tournament for the first time in their collegiate careers.
Follow these six seniors and the rest of the Nittany Lions as they close out their regular season play this Saturday at 3 p.m. at the Penn State Lacrosse Stadium.