By Rylie Ross
Briefly, what is your background in the sport you play?
I am relatively new to lacrosse, playing for the first time last spring. I originally came to Southern Virginia as a softball player, playing three successful seasons. After returning from a mission, I found that my time needed to be devoted elsewhere but I could not completely let go of athletics. I was then introduced to lacrosse, falling in love with it.
What is your major in college, and what is the most important thing you learned in that discipline?
I am a biology major and I found my passion with the help of the amazing science faculty here. Thanks to their guidance and support, I will be attending the University of Utah this spring to become a physical therapist.
What is your favorite spot on campus?
The front of Main Hall, looking out over Buena Vista. It truly is a “good view” and I cannot help but be filled with gratitude for this wonderful community and how it has shaped my life.
Outside of your home and campus, where is your favorite place to visit?
The Amish Cupboard! The Bollingers (the owners) have become my family and it is the best place to satisfy a craving from their awesome snacks to their fresh deli.
Other than your family members, who was the most influential person in your life?
Ebere Udeh. I spent six months visiting him in an immigration prison in Switzerland. His compassion and determination throughout his fight for justice was inspirational. He and others have helped me to understand what this life is about and what true freedom entails.
If you could give one piece of advice to elementary school children, what would that advice be?
When you find something you love, dedicate yourself to it without losing balance in your life. We all want to be successful and that only happens with dedication; however, there is more to love in life than a few things. Allow for new opportunities to come in and out of your life. I would have never learned that I loved lacrosse if I was not open to trying something new even when it was intimidating.
Outside of the CAC, who or what is your favorite sports person or team?
I come from Kentucky basketball country, so the Wildcats will always be my team. A common nickname they have is the “comeback cats” which we have seen this year as they fought to be in the Final Four. They are an example of what can be accomplished when you never give up!
What has been your favorite memory with this year's team?
Our Salisbury game. While we lost, it was the best we ever played as a team. It has been intimidating coming into the best lacrosse conference in the nation but I am so proud of all the girls. This team has made phenomenal strides in a short amount of time and I am so excited for what the future holds.
As a senior, how do you help the younger players?
I would like to say that trying to work hard and complain less is key. Lacrosse is a tough game and I think it is always important to stay positive and highlight success, especially when we are so prone to tear ourselves down.
What would you like to do for a career?
With the help and support of so many fantastic people at Southern Virginia University and in the community I am going to be a physical therapist.
Do you participate in other things outside of school and athletics?
I love to hike and this is one of the best places to do it. If you have not yet taken advantage of the Blue Ridge, start now.