Alexis Venechanos, second-year head coach
Feb. 16, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The 18th-ranked Ohio State women’s lacrosse team opens its home schedule with a pair of games in Ohio Stadium, taking on Robert Morris at 2 p.m. Friday before hosting Louisville at 1 p.m. Sunday. These are the first women’s lacrosse games to take place in the storied venue and are the first of at least three appearances in The ‘Shoe for the Buckeyes.
Next weekend, the men’s and women’s squads will participate in a doubleheader in Ohio Stadium with the women facing Brown at 11 a.m. before the men take on 11th-ranked UMass immediately following.
IF YOU GO
For both games this weekend, fans are asked to enter the stadium through Gate 7, located on the west side of the venue. Parking will be available in the stadium lots around the entrance; however, extra time should be allowed Friday, as it is a normal business day and lots are utilized by faculty, staff and students. Admission to both games, and to all regular-season home women’s games, is free.
The games Friday and Sunday in Columbus will be streamed through the Buckeye Vision subscription service, while live stats via Gametracker will belinked on the front page or the women’s lacrosse schedule page of OhioStateBuckeyes.com. All OSU home games during the 2012 season, with the exception of any on TV, will be streamed through Buckeye Vision.
In addition to the official website of Ohio State athletics, OhioStateBuckeyes.com, the women’s lacrosse team can be followed through social media outlets Facebook (facebook.com/ohiostatewomenslacrosse) and Twitter (twitter.com/OhioState_WLAX).
IN A NUTSHELL
Ohio State opened the season with wins over San Diego State, 19-4, and No. 6 Stanford, 14-10, last weekend in Palo Alto, Calif., to start 2-0 for the first time since the 2009 season. Ten Buckeyes scored between the first two games with senior captains Alayna Markwordt (4g, 7a) and Gabby Capuzzi (8g, 3a) leading the way with 11 points apiece. Capuzzi also has team-leading totals of eight draw controls, six groundballs and six caused turnovers heading into this weekend.
RECORDS ARE MEANT TO BE BROKEN
An early-season candidate for the Tewaaraton Trophy, Alayna Markwordt broke the Ohio State record for career goals with her performance last weekend in California. She tied the mark of 143 previously set by Megan Mirick (1999-2003) and Kelly Haggerty (2007-10) against San Diego State, before breaking it with a single tally vs. the Cardinal. Next up is the career points record, which she is nine away from breaking. The current top mark is 243, also set by Haggerty.
ALC PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Gabby Capuzzi earned ALC Offensive Player of the Week honors, while Tori DeScenza was named the conference’s Rookie of the Week after their respective performances in wins over San Diego State and Stanford last weekend. Capuzzi, a senior captain, had eight goals and three assists between the two games, including a five-goal, one-assist outing vs. the Cardinal.
DeScenza, a freshman from Sea Bright, N.J., finished her first complete collegiate game against No. 6 Stanford with 12 saves, including 11 in the second half as the Cardinal exploded with 22 shots. Against San Diego State, the rookie goalie played the second half, allowing two goals and coming up with a pair of groundballs. She also was named the national WomensLax.com Rookie of the Week.
Senior captain Alayna Marwordt was named to the 2012 Tewaaraton Watch List this week as a member of the early pool of players who will be under consideration for college lacrosse's highest individual honor. The Tewaaraton Award was formally established in August of 2000 by The University Club of Washington, DC and is the pre-eminent lacrosse award, which is awarded annually to the NCAA male and female lacrosse players of the year. The selection committee will make additions to the list as the season progresses. In late April, the list will be narrowed to 25, who will be named Tewaaraton Nominees. In mid-May, five finalists will be announced. The finalists will be invited to the Tewaaraton Award Ceremony, held May 31 at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
Robert Morris opened the season Feb. 5 against Howard and has been off since. The Colonials defeated the Bison 18-9 off the strength of Talia Waskowicz seven-point performance (6g, 1a). In total, 10 RMU players recorded points in the season opener with six players securing a multi-point game. The Colonials are slated to finish second in the Northeast Conference following a 2011 season which ended in their first appearance in the NEC Tournament and a final record of 8-9 (7-2 NEC).
Louisville will open its 2012 season against Ohio State picked seventh in the Big East preseason coaches’ poll after going 10-7 last year, with a 3-5 mark in league play. The Cardinals return 13 letterwinners from a year ago, including IWLCA all-region selections Katie Oliverio and Monica Negron. In 2011, Oliverio ranked second nationally in assists per game (2.53), fifth in assists (43) and 30th in points per game (3.76), while Negron was 23rd in ground balls per game (2.71) and tied for 48th in caused turnovers (48th).
AT A GLANCE
Ohio State welcomes back five starters and 16 letterwinners from the 2011 team which finished 10-7 overall and 2-3 in the ALC. Among the returning players are senior captains Alayna Markwordt, an Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-American, Gabby Capuzzi and Kirsten Donahue. Fellow senior Olivia Cora and sophomore Tayler Kuzma are the two returning mainstays of the Buckeye defense. They are under the guidance of second-year head coach Alexis Venechanos.
Ohio State was picked No. 18 in the IWLCA coaches poll and 20th in the deBeer media poll prior to the start of the season, while coming in fourth in the ALC preseason rankings. Individually, Alayna Markwordt has been tabbed a preseason All-American by Inside Lacrosse and an ALC player to watch, along with fellow senior captain Gabby Capuzzi.
The 2012 roster features eight seniors, three juniors, eight sophomores and 11 freshmen hailing from 10 different states. Maryland leads the way with 10, followed by New Jersey (5), New York (4), Pennsylvania (4), Ohio (2) and one each from Colorado, Connecticut, Minnesota, Missouri and Virginia. There are 13 new faces among the group, including two transfers to go with the 11 rookies. In addition, there are two sets of sisters who have teamed up for the 2012 season.