PHOTO BY JOHN STROHSACKER

Early 2023 Rankings: Nos. 15-11 (Division I Women)


The summer of lacrosse will soon make way for fall ball, and thus the dawn of the next NCAA women’s lacrosse season is here.

As we here at USA Lacrosse Magazine do every year, we’re taking a crack at ranking the Top 25 programs in the country before the fall exhibition season begins. Check back each day this week as we break down another five-team segment, ending with Nos. 5-1 on Friday.

Also considered (alphabetical): Arizona State, Army, Drexel, Navy, Temple

Early 2023 Rankings

Division I Men
No. 25 - No. 21
No. 20 - No. 16
No. 15 - No. 11
No. 10 - No. 6
No. 5 - No. 1
Division I Women
No. 25 - No. 21
No. 20 - No. 16
No. 15 - No. 11
No. 10 - No. 6
No. 5 - No. 1

"Before its future move to the Big Ten in August 2024, USC still has two more shots at winning the Pac-12."


15. USC

2022 record: 13-5 (8-2 Pac-12)

Last seen: USC exited the NCAA tournament with a 13-11 first-round loss to Virginia.

Initial forecast: Before its future move to the Big Ten in August 2024, USC still has two more shots at winning the Pac-12 tournament — which it has done three times, with the last one coming in 2019. In 2022, the Trojans will have to make do without Kelsey Huff (47 goals, six assists), an All-American and Pac-12 Midfielder of the Year. But much of the offense remains intact. Isabelle Vitale (38 goals, 33 assists) is back after a solid rookie season. Ella Heaney (34 goals, 19 assists), Shelby Tilton (35 goals, six assists) and Claudia Shevitz (30 goals, eight assists, 67 draw controls) are all slated to return. Attacker Maddie Dora (17 goals, eight assists) and midfielder Christina Gagnon (39 draw controls) will likely play more significant roles in 2022. Defensively, Lizzie Wagner and Kaleigh Brennan, who caused 22 turnovers apiece, have departed. But the Trojans should get a boost from Emma Wightman, a graduate transfer from Florida, who anchored a Gators defense that finished No. 10 nationally (9.75).








14. NOTRE DAME

2022 record: 9-10 (3-5 ACC)

Last seen: The Irish fell to Michigan in the first round of the NCAA tournament, 17-11.

Initial forecast: Two of the Irish’s returning attackers didn’t sit back and relax this summer. Kasey Choma (59 goals, 28 draw controls, 14 caused turnovers) and Madison Ahern (57 goals, 20 assists, 12 caused turnovers) are back in South Bend after earning silver medals with Team USA in the Sixes discipline at The World Games. The biggest cleats to fill are on the other end of the field. Starting goalie Bridget Deehan (11.73 GAA, .431 save percentage) completed her fifth season in 2022. Rising junior Lilly Callahan produced a 9.29 GAA and .630 save percentage in about 64 minutes of play.

13. DUKE

2022 record: 16-4 (6-2 ACC)

Last seen: Duke beat Johns Hopkins in the first round of the NCAA tournament but fell to eventual semifinalist Maryland 16-9 in the second round.

Initial forecast: Duke raced out to a 6-0 record, its best since 2015, and made noise on April 16 when it downed then-defending national champion Boston College 16-15. But the Blue Devils fizzled out, falling in the first round of the ACC tournament to Notre Dame and exiting the NCAA tournament in the second round. Cat Barry, who switched from midfield to attack and led the Blue Devils with 56 goals and 37 assists, is gone. But rising junior Katie DeSimone (60 goals, 25 assists) and rising senior Olivia Carner (31 goals, 19 assists) remain. Maddie Jenner is back for a fifth season after corralling an NCAA single-season record of 233 draw controls while pouring in 30 goals in 2022. Sophia LeRose (11.98 GAA, .407 save percentage) will return in net. The Blue Devils are also bringing in a talented freshman class that includes USA Lacrosse High School All-Americans in attackers Eva Pronti (Victor, N.Y.), Kaylie Mackiewicz (Northport, N.Y.) and Ava Biancardi (Northport, N.Y.) and goalie Madison Drebing (Marist, Ill.).




PHOTO BY RICH BARNES


12. LOYOLA

2022 record: 20-2 (9-0 Patriot League)

Last seen: Loyola’s first 20-win season in program history concluded with a 20-13 loss to Boston College in the NCAA quarterfinals.

Initial forecast: It will be hard for Loyola to top last season’s record-setting campaign, which included a sixth Patriot League crown and the program’s first trip to the NCAA quarterfinals since 2015. And if the Greyhounds do, it’ll be without Livy Rosenzweig (65 goals, 46 assists, 128 draw controls), who broke several records of her own, including the program’s assists, points and draw control marks. Midfielder Sam Fiedler (40 goals, 34 assists), goalie Kaitlyn Larsson (8.25 GAA, .467 save percentage) and defender Shay Clevenger (15 caused turnovers, 30 ground balls), who decided to forego graduate school, are also gone. But head coach Jen Adams is bringing back a talented group, headlined by rising sophomore attacker Georgia Latch (38 goals, 38 assists), who recently played for Australia at the World Lacrosse Women’s Championship, and another rising star in Sydni Black (39 goals, 13 assists). Draws leader Jillian Wilson (48 goals, 13 assists, 133 draw controls) is back for a fifth season, as is All-American defender Katie Detwiler (20 caused turnovers, 53 draw controls, 22 ground balls). Expect rising sophomore Chase Boyle (25 goals, 24 draw controls, 18 caused turnovers) to play a more prominent role out of the midfield. Rising sophomore goalie Lauren Spence (6.35 GAA, .500 save percentage) saw nearly 142 minutes of action in 13 games during her rookie year.

11. STANFORD

2022 record: 12-7 (8-2 Pac-12)

Last seen: In one of the more stunning NCAA tournament first-round twists, Stanford lost to Jacksonville 20-8.

Initial forecast: The Cardinal has won the Pac-12 tournament title in each of Danielle Spencer’s first two full seasons at the helm, but the real headlines have been the talent she’s lured to the non-traditional lacrosse state. Ashley Humphrey, who switched commitments from Northwestern to Stanford after Spencer was hired, dished a Division I single-season record 88 assists during her redshirt-freshman campaign. She also tallied 36 goals and a team-high 124 points. True freshman Annabel Frist (56 goals, 14 assists, 54 draw controls) and redshirt freshman Sarah Jacques (20 goals, six assists) also produced promising rookie seasons. Their returns are crucial because the Cardinal bids farewell to Ali Baiocco, who paced the team with 62 goals. Draw control leaders Galen Lew (22 goals, 17 assists, 68 draw controls) and Mackenzie Chapman (61 draw controls) are gone, too. Kara Rahaim (12.09 GAA, .458 save percentage) will be back for her senior season in net after starting all 19 games last season. But rookies will likely be a big story again in 2023. Four Under Armour All-Americans are headed to Stanford in midfielder Rylee Bouvier (Bishop Guertin, N.H.), attacker Peep Williams (Seton Catholic, N.Y.), defender Grace Turner (William Penn Charter School, Pa.)  and goalie Lucy Pearson (SCH Academy, Pa.). Williams, a lefty, was the MVP of the Under Armour All-American Game after tallying four goals and five draws for the North.


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