Cavaliers Ranked #7 in Preseason InsideLacrosse Poll
Feb. 19, 2001
The Virginia Cavaliers were ranked #7 by InsideLacrosse in the preseason poll. The Hoos, who advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals for the fifth consecutive year in 2000, look to improve on that finish in May.
To do so, the 2001 Cavaliers will rely on a solid combination of experience and talent to continue their post-season stretch. Veterans at both ends of the field will be crucial in the Hoos’ gameplan as once again they prepare for one of the most challenging schedules in the nation.
The Cavaliers will be deep at goalie, with two veterans in Liz McCarthy and Mary Beth LaVerghetta both garnering experience last season in a variety of situations. This tandem will be pushed by newcomer Andrea Pfeiffer, a two-time high school All-American.
In front of the circle, the Virginia defense will again be strong this season, relying on Lauri Kenis to set the tone for the line. A two-year starter for the Cavaliers, Kenis will marshall a defense that will be younger than in years past but very excited about continuing the tradition of a solid Cavalier defense. Joining Kenis in the backfield will be Tiffany Schummer, who started for the Cavaliers in the early part of the season last year, Courtney Muller, both of whom gained valuable playing time last year, and Libby Hoyle will also provide veteran leadership for the Cavaliers at defense. USA Under-19 World Champion K. K. Scharfe joins the team for her rookie season in 2001 and will look to capitalize on her international experience to help strengthen the Cavalier backfield. Laura Burns also joins the defense as a first year, helping with the depth.
Virginia’s midfield will be anchored by a combination of speed and game-awareness in Gina Sambus and Lauren Aumller. Sambus, a two-year starter for the Cavaliers, has played extensively on both ends of the field and her experience will be a stabilizing factor for the Hoos. Joining her will be current USA team member Lauren Aumiller, a returning second-year who started all 19 games last year for Virginia. Aumiller, the starting center and captain of the World Champion USA Under-19 team in 1999, will look to develop her international experience to pay dividends on the field once again this season for the Hoos. Supporting in the midfield cast will be fourth-year captain Jill Hansen, who started for the Hoos in 2000, and third-year Molly Cangemi who also gained valuable minutes last season. These two will be counted on to lead first-years Morgan Thalenberg, and Lauren Keller, two high-school All-Americans joining the squad as rookies.
The Virginia attack will be bolstered by a number of veteran performers. Fourth-years Jamie Haas, Mills Hook, and Lacey Aumiller have been a part of the Cavalier rotation for the past three years and are all proven scorers. Haas has led the team in scoring in both of the past two years. As a second year she set the record for points scored as a sophomore, and in 2000 Haas tied the Cavalier record for scoring in consecutive games. Hook, the 1998 ACC Rookie of the Year, has ranked among the Virginia scoring leaders in each of her three seasons and should move into the top-10 all-time in scoring at UVA this season. She and Aumiller have both been instrumental in the Cavaliers’ post-season victories and will be an important part of the senior leadership for the Cavaliers on the field this season. High school All-American Lindsey Buchanan will look to take the field after sitting out due to injury last season. These three will be counted on to lead a deep group of first-years, including Caitlin Banks, a high school All-American, Schuyler Williams, Carol Hotarek, Anne Harvey and Erin Sweeney.
The Cavaliers will once again play directly through the heart of the top-20, starting with the Atlantic Coast Conference, with all four teams ranked in the nation’s top-10. Fierce in-state rivalries include NCAA semifinalist from 2000 James Madison, William & Mary, George Mason, Virginia Tech and Richmond. Virginia will also play NCAA semifinalists Princeton and Loyola as well as Syracuse,who participated in the NCAA tournament in 2000, and former NCAA Champions Penn State and Temple, who are always tough squads.