Welcome to my blog! While many of you may already know this, I am one of the assistant coaches for Irish National Women’s Lacrosse team. Yes, I know, it is an awesome gig and has been a very rewarding opportunity. It has been an honor to coach this special group of women, to work with this incredible staff (who are also great friends), and to be a part of the international growth of the game! In less than one month, I will head off to Ireland to train as a team before we fly to England to participate in the FIL Rathbones Women’s Lacrosse World Cup. My hope, in creating this blog, is to share this special experience with all of you.
To answer some of the questions that many people have, and that you might have as well:
Are you even Irish?
No, I am technically not Irish (although I feel pretty lucky, get it…Irish…).
How did you ever land this amazing opportunity?
Like I said above, I’ve got the luck of the Irish! All kidding aside, Sarah Walsh, the head coach of Team Ireland and a former player on the team herself, reached out to me when I first moved to Seattle two and a half years ago. Sarah and I are both Northwestern graduates and while I never had the opportunity to play with Sarah (who graduated the year before I attended) we had a great connection and have coached a number of camps together. In fact, Sarah was the very first Northwestern player I met when I visited the school between my junior and senior year of high school. She went out of her way to make me feel comfortable and at home with the Northwestern team and that feeling she left me with is one of the many reasons I committed to go to school at the end of that visit. When she called me up two and a half years ago and asked if I would be interested in helping coach the team (although I took a few days to think about it), I said that I would love to. Our philosophies and values (and the rest of the coach staffs) are so much in line that is was a no brainer and the experience has been everything I imagined and WAY more.
How do you manage to live in Seattle and coach the Irish team?
Great questions. When I joined the staff two and a half years ago, the major upcoming event was the European Championship the following August of 2015. The next major event was the World Cup that is coming up this July. While the times that I spend with the team are intensive (3 weeks in Prague, Czech Republic for the European Championships and 3 weeks coming up in July for the World Cup) they are not frequent and happen to occur during times that, as a 7th grade coordinator at Seattle Academy, I have off! With that in mind, the girls train very hard on their own year round to prepare for these tournaments and hold each other accountable.
What Harry Potter house do you belong to?
Okay, I recognize that this is probably not a question that you actually have but one thing you need to know about our team is that everyone gets sorted into a house and as no surprise to anyone, I am a member of Hufflepuff. I will introduce you to some other Huffles when I get over to Europe!
What is the highlight of coaching this team?
The people. This is such a special group of people that I have the privilege to coach. They are passionate, engaged, funny, supportive, and they all have a really special connection to each other and a pride in representing Ireland. I remember the end of the European Championships feeling very bittersweet. We had done really well as a team and I was excited to get back home, but I was really sad to be leaving the team. Now we will all be reunited very soon and I could not be more excited.
Coaching the Irish team has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life and I cannot wait to share the experience with you all. Look out for inside scoops on the team and World Cup, interviews with players, and video clips!
See you across the pond!