Imagine a sport that combines the hand-eye coordination of softball, the movement of basketball, the footwork of soccer and the stick-work of hockey. That sport is lacrosse. Lauren Rippy has brought women’s lacrosse to Aurora University.
In her first year, Rippy has already begun recruiting players on campus and off. She scouted players from Maryland, Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota and Alabama. “I am excited to add such diverse players to increase the chemistry among the girls on campus,” she says.
Before coming to AU Rippy taught at Bollingbrook High School and coached women’s lacrosse at Neuqua Valley High School for six years. She led Neuqua Valley to six conference championships in seven seasons and held a record of 98-39-3. Like many of the players who started this year, Rippy did the same in college at Texas Tech University.
“I played basketball all through high school and picked up a stick in college,” she says.
According to Rippy most people can play lacrosse as long as they are athletic and agile. The sport does not contain a one-size-fits-all mold like other sports such as soccer or basketball.
“All different shapes and sizes can play lacrosse,” Rippy explains, “Middies need to be able to run up and down the field while defense needs to have good footwork.”
Since women’s lacrosse is a new program at AU, Rippy plans to take some of the new players to watch Northwestern University compete this season. The Wildcats are currently ranked No. 1 in the nation.
“Many of our girls have never been to a lacrosse game and they have a lot to learn,” she says, “Who better to watch than the No. 1 team in the nation?”
The women’s lacrosse team will begin their Varsity schedule next spring.