Coach Laura Sandbloom celebrates CA's sixth straight State Lacrosse Championship with members of the team.

Lacrosse alumnae show collegiate success

Guest Blog by Lacrosse Coach Laura Sandbloom

Every new group of students that enters Colorado Academy brings new ideas, perspectives, and skills that enrich our community and our programs in the arts, athletics, and academics. I love the mix of old traditions with new, of the Seniors’ wisdom juxtaposed with the Ninth Graders’ wide-eyed positivity, and the sense that so many people come together to create a positive experience for all.

This is my eighth spring season coaching Girls Lacrosse at CA, and every year brings new energy and a renewed sense of purpose from the group of athletes that I am lucky enough to coach. There is one element that tends to remain each year, and that is a sense of tradition and reverence for the players and coaches that have come before us.

This sense of tradition is one that our alumni speak about often, and I hear from previous CA athletes that they cherish the moments they had with their teammates on Slater Field.

Alumnae Lacrosse accomplishments

This season, it’s more clear than ever that our alumnae who go on to play lacrosse at the highest levels are finding success in their endeavors. This past weekend, Lauren Russell ’18 made us all proud with her stunning performance in the College of William & Mary’s season debut against Villanova University.

From USA Lacrosse: “William & Mary rallied from down two with 6:33 remaining to down Villanova 14-13. Serena Jacobs (three goals) scored the final two goals of the game, with the winner coming with 2:17 left to play. It was Lauren Russell (seven goals, one assist) who scored the first in the game-ending 3-0 run.”

From The Virginian-Pilot: “After leading William & Mary to a season-opening comeback victory at Villanova, Senior Lauren Russell and Freshman Serena Jacobs earned weekly awards from the Colonial Athletic Association. Russell was selected as the Player of the Week, while Jacobs garnered Rookie of the Week honors. Russell, a Denver native, posted one of the greatest offensive performances in school history in the win, as she totaled career highs in points (eight) and goals (six). Her point total is tied for seventh in W&M’s record book, while her goal total is tied for 10th. Russell’s six goals came on just seven shots. Four of her goals came during the final two quarters to help the Tribe rally from a five-goal halftime deficit.”

Beyond Russell’s outstanding performance, two of our most recent graduates, Maya Rutherford ’21 and Katharine Merrifield ’21, have already found success on the field for University of Michigan Lacrosse. Both had ample playing time against Notre Dame this past Sunday, contributing to the biggest win in program history for the Michigan Wolverines over the #5-ranked Fighting Irish. (Michigan has since risen in the national rankings to #11). Even though I am a Buckeye for life (2006-2010), I spent Super Bowl Sunday glued to my TV, watching a fantastic Division I Women’s Lacrosse match and rooting for Michigan Blue. Every time I saw Maya or Katharine on the field, my heart skipped a beat, and I couldn’t help but beam with pride. We are all lucky that these young women continue to represent CA with immeasurable poise and grace beyond their high school years. Read more from Michigan’s athletics round-up.

There are so many CA Lacrosse alumnae to be proud of, including recent 2019 graduate and two-time High School All-American Sloane Murphy, who saw significant playing time for the University of Southern California against San Diego State this past weekend. She is poised to have a breakout season in 2022, along with midfielder Jessie Bakes, whose opening season at Brown University begins on February 19. Bakes was recently named Colorado Sportswoman of the Year for High School Girls Lacrosse in 2021.

These student-athletes represent only a few of our former players who are currently competing for programs across the country or have recently graduated after four years of competition for their respective schools. I am proud of every one of them who represents, not only CA, but also Colorado. They demonstrate that fierce competitors never leave their kindness or curiosity at the door—they take it out into the world. As a coach, I couldn’t hope for anything more.

Current collegiate players

Claire Wright ’17, Tufts University

Lauren Russell ’18, College of William & Mary

Aly Galagher ’19, Claremont McKenna College

Sloane Murphy ’19, University of Southern California

Cleo Smith ’19, Sewanee: The University of the South

Alex Foreman ’20, United States Naval Academy

Ella Greene ’20, University of California, Berkeley

Ella Marks ’20, Dickinson College

Merrill Rollhaus ’20, Denison University

Jessie Bakes, Brown University

Rebecca Kerr ’21, Denison University

Katharine Merrifield ’21, University of Michigan

Maya Rutherford ’21, University of Michigan

Recent collegiate players who have now graduated

Henley Hall ’16, Middlebury College

Ella Annest ’17, University of California, Berkeley

Anna Galagher ’17, Marquette University

Sydney Prokupek, ’17, Wesleyan University

Emma Richards ’17, Wesleyan University

Bridget Sutter ’17, University of Tampa