Over the course of December, ULAX has been counting down the Top 15 (out of 40) women’s field teams of 2019 from ULAX leagues around North America.
The selection and ranking process of these teams was a collaborative effort between the ULAX city managers and ULAX founders Tim Leonard and Neema Kassaii. They considered the following factors: strength of schedule, championships won, playoff appearances/resume, and other relevant factors such as team composition and history. As you can imagine, this wasn’t an easy undertaking given the sheer volume of teams in the immense network of ULAX leagues, especially since most teams from different leagues within the network never played head-to-head. After hours of deliberation and debate, this ULAX committee selected a list that they believe fairly and accurately ranks the best ULAX teams of 2019.
Powell Lacrosse is proud to present the full Top 15 list. Enjoy!
15. FCA (Kansas City, KS)
FCA led the summer ‘19 season in the Kansas City division, posting an 86 GF / 31 GA differential. The team was led by Kallie Muck (Liberty University) and Sabrina Kowalik (Missouri-Columbia) on offense and were supported by strong goaltending from Doloria Alexander (Kansas) in net. FCA looked poised to win the summer championship, but were stymied in an upset loss to a strong No Pabs squad in the league championship game. Some other notable players include, Kimberly Appuzo (Ohio State), Abby Britton (Liberty University) and Paige Fayette (Ottawa University).
14. Cougar Lax (Denver, CO)
Cougar Lax had a strong showing in the Denver fall ball league, dropping only one game in the regular season to a talented team Rage. Given their solid performance during the regular season, it was no surprise that they found themselves in the fall ball championship game (and this year’s Top 15) where they lost again to team Rage by only a couple of goals. This team was led by Chelsea Audin (Rochester, Summer ’19 Team MVP) and Molly Snively (Denver) on offense and goalie Brittany Read (Oregon) on defense, which only allowed 34 goals throughout the fall season.
13. RIPSAW (Columbus, OH)
Ripsaw dominated the competition in the Columbus division by going undefeated in the regular season and winning the ’19 summer championship. They scored 53 goals while holding their opponents to ONLY 10 GOALS ALL SEASON. This squad is jam packed with talent from top to bottom. Some notable players include Lily Berger (Cal), Kailee O’Brien (Florida Tech), Brenna Smith (Florida Southern), Lauren Farber (Furman), Sam Arey (Limestone), Kileigh Casey (Mercer), Sarah Dankowski (Walsh), Megan Kozar (Kent State), Maddy Mead (Kent State), and current/former Wittenberg players, Bre Donnelly, Alex Dressman, Carrie Kubasta, Mallory Skrobot and Kellen Sullivan.
12. MERCY (Long Island, NY)
Beginning in the summer 2015 season, Mercy was the team to beat in Long Island. Led by Hunter Isnardi (Division II Midfielder of the Year, First Team All American, NCAA Woman of the Year nominee, Tewaaraton Award Women’s Watch List, NCAA DII record for career goals with 310) Mercy won four championships and posted a whopping 23-4 record between the ’15-’18 seasons. They were finally beaten by the Breakers in the championship game of the summer ’19 season, ending four years of dominance. Despite this hiccup, Mercy remains strong in large part due to the great chemistry between its players, including: Hailey Rhatigan (Mercer, Summer ’19 Team MVP), Amy Hofer (SUNY New Paltz), Brittani Sergio (Mercy), Sydney Corley (Middle Country HS), and Tara Bovich (SUNY New Paltz).
11. RAGE (Denver CO)
Rage brought a strong team to the Denver division with great numbers on a weekly basis. Given their talent and consistency, they were able to claim the fall ’19 championship after dropping two games in the regular season. They also had a strong showing in the summer ’19 season where they went 5-1 in the regular season, losing in the semi finals to the Ball Cradlers who had a dominant performance. Notable players on this team include Olivia Lash (San Diego State/Wittenberg, Summer ’19 Team MVP), Casey Bocklet (Virginia), Lily Colley (Regis), Amber Moyer (Ursinus) and goalie Susie Marcoux (Waynesburg).
10. Team Dijon (Buffalo, NY)
Team Dijon, named after their Dijon mustard colored jerseys, has been competing in the Buffalo division since the Summer of 2016 (under various team names), claiming two of the three championships that they’ve played in. The team is stacked with D1 talent and always come out with great energy. They haven’t made many changes to their roster over the years, which has attributed to their great team chemistry. The team is led by Jackie Screiber (West Seneca), who posted 30 points (20G, 10A) in the summer ’19 season. Team Dijon has also received strong offensive contributions from Emily Peters (Edinboro – 29 Points (22G, 7A), as well as Hanna Vause (Niagara – 17 points (14G, 3A). Other notable players include Meghan Donnelly and goalie Amy Martin (Niagara).
9. Rugrats (New York, NY)
After going 5-1 in the regular season, the Rugrats proved that they were the team to beat in the New York City division. They lost the fall ‘19 season in a rainy championship game against an impressive Team Green. The team was led by former Lehigh players Lauren Beausoleil and Nicollete Dunphy who put up 29 points (24G, 5A) and 18 points (15G, 3A) respectively on the season. A few other team leaders include, Kayla Flynn (American) and Laura Rowan (Lafayette). The addition of the Lehigh alum (who played for a talented Hawks team earlier in the year) made a huge difference for this team, earning them a top 10 spot in this year’s Top 15.
8. Team Rebels (Denver, CO)
The Rebels had a stellar regular season in the summer ’19 Denver division. They went 6-0 on the season with their closest margin of victory being 5 goals. Not surprisingly, they advanced to the championship game after edging out the Hybrid Humes in the semi finals. They were then upset by one goal in the championship game. They were led by University of Colorado-Colorado Springs duo, Bri Martinez and Kiera Lowe who posted 17 points (14G, 3A) and 16 points (13G, 3A), respectively. Other key players include Natalie Ianniciello (Virginia Wesleyan) along with former University of Denver players Sonorah Hunter, Melissa Maier and Kara Secora.
7. Team Green (New York City, NY)
After going 3-3 in the regular season of the fall ‘19 season, Team Green made a run in the playoffs, which culminated in a dominant performance against the Rugrats in a rainy league championship game. The team was led by the fall ’19 league MVP DonnaJo DiNorcia (Manhattan College) who had 20 points (15G, 5A) on the season. Team Green really came together for the playoffs behind some stellar play by DiNorcia, Mackenzie Tesai (Stanford, Co-Team MVP Fall ’19, 22 Points (22G)), Anthea Weixel (Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, 9 Points (9G)), Caitlyn Damon (Fairleigh Dickinson, 8 Points (8G)) and legendary guest goalie, Jackie Ray.
6. No Pabs (Kansas City, KS)
No Pabs claimed the league title in the inaugural summer ’19 Kansas City division. They went 7-1 on the season with 73 goals for and 39 goals against. The team was led by Helen Krause (Rockhurst, Summer ’19 League MVP), who put up 20 points (17G, 3A) on the season. Other key players on this team include: Molly Sadick (19 points (15G, 4A)), Madeline Gilstrap (Rockhurst, 18 points (7G, 11A)), Maddi Sheipeter (Rockhurst, (17 Points 15G, 2A)) and Danielle Spencer (Rockhurst Asst. Coach, (14 Points, 7G, 7A)). They were led in cage by Olivia Matlock (Monmouth) who had a league high .539 save percentage.
5. Ball Cradlers (Denver, CO)
With a creative name and nothing to lose, the Ball Cradlers went 3-3 in the regular season before an improbable run in the playoffs to upend then undefeated #8 Rebels to claim the Summer ’19 chip in the Denver division. The team was led by Lily Herrmann (Pomona-Pitzer) and Tierra Romero (Regis), who both had 11 points (10G, 1A) on the season. Other notable players include, Mary Prevedel (Colorado State, Summer ’19 League MVP), Jada Bonner (Regis, Two-Time All American) and Peri Cirbo (Stevenson).
4. Top Cheddar (Buffalo, NY)
The core players of the Top Cheddar squad have been part of the Buffalo division since the inaugural season in the Summer of 2015. That core group of players, such as Ashley O’Brien (Buffalo State), Amy Simon (Fredonia), Angelina Simon (Mercyhurst) and Kathryn Yoder (St. Bonaventure), have been in four of the six league championship games. Although not always under the “Top Cheddar” name, they have won three of those four championships. In the Winter ‘19 league, Christina Krowel (48 points (36G, 12A)) and Caitlin Formato (George Mason, 43 points (21G, 22A)) led the league in points by a large margin and Ashley O’Brien (Buffalo State) had a league best 0.633 SV%.
3. Hawks (New York, NY)
The Hawks were a team comprised mainly of former Lehigh Alum and were the team to beat the NYC division. They were led by Lauren Beausoleil (Lehigh, Spring ’19 League MVP) who scored 27 points (23G, 4A) in the spring season. Beausoleil’s dominance on offense was complemented by Lehigh alum, Megan Paytas, Kelly Scott, Nicolette Dunphy along with Kaitlyn Decker (Virginia Tech), Katie Hall. On defense, they were led by Christina DaVita (Fairfield), and Lehigh alum Michelle Abramczyk, Katie Fitzpatrick and Alexis King.
2. Breakers (Long Island, NY)
The Breakers took control of the Long Island division this year after defeating the perennial powerhouse #12 Mercy in the summer championship game. The team had a league best +33 GF/GA differential. The Breakers have a strong core of NCAA talent, including Emma Cantwell (LIU Post, Summer ’19 Team MVP), who scored 22 points (13G, 9A) on the season, Emily Beier (Loyola), Elena Brindley (Notre Dame), Kasey Dorney (Wagner), Hailey Grau (St. Bonaventure), Rachel O’Brien (Adelphi) and Isabelle Sarle (SUNY Geneseo). In goal they are led by Lauren DiStepfano (Wagner).
1. Smokin’ Bull (Buffalo, NY)
The Smokin’ Bull won the summer ’19 championship in the Buffalo division in dominate fashion. The team is comprised of many current/former members of the Haudenosaunee Women’s National Lacrosse Team. The team is led by Miya Scanlon (Gowanda HS, ‘21) and Shayla Scanlon (Louisville) who put up an impressive 60 points (Miya – 32G, 8A; Shayla – 13G, 7A) over the course of the summer season. In addition to the Scanlon sisters, the Jimerson family helped lead this team to a great summer season. Notably, this was the first year Claudia Jimerson had an opportunity to play with both of her daughters, Alie (Syracuse) & Jalyn Jimerson (Syracuse, Three-time US Lacrosse High School All-American honoree). Other key players include, Lois Garlow (Mount St. Mary’s Academy ‘19, US Lacrosse High School All-America honoree), Emma Powlin (Albany), Megan Mikolajek (Albany), Rachel Heidenreich (Canisius), and goalie Jenna Haring (Limestone).
Congratulations to Smoking Bull on being named the #1 Women’s ULAX team of 2019!
Think your team should have been ranked higher? Was your team not ranked at all?
Let us know why your ULAX team deserves to be in the Top 15 in the comments.
Want to play some of these teams from across the country?
Then start planning for ULAX’s Liberty Cup tournament held on the last weekend of July in New York City where ULAX teams from around North America are invited to compete for bragging rights.
Visit the link below for more information:
We can’t wait to see what 2020 has in store for ULAX teams all over North America.