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Julie Gardner is a first-year on the women’s lacrosse team this spring. The Severna Park, Md., native was a two-time first-team high school All-American and a six-time Player of the Year honoree, as named by various organizations. Gardner was named to the National School Girls Championship Team in 2007 and was a two-time member of the high school All-Tewaaraton Team.

Question: How was your first fall ball experience? What was it like training with the coaching staff and the rest of the team?
Gardner: My first fall ball experience was really awesome. It helped me adjust to the college game of lacrosse and I learned what little mistakes I cannot make anymore. It was really cool having a whole coaching staff because I come from a public high school, where we didn’t really have the lifting and the trainers to take care of us before and after practice.

Question: How was your first semester on Grounds? What did you enjoy the most?
Gardner: First semester on grounds went very well. The huge lecture classes was something completely new to me. Being on grounds itself is so cool, because it is such a beautiful place to be. Dorm life is fun because you live so close to all of your friends, it is very convenient.

Question: What are you looking forward to this spring?
Gardner: I’m looking forward to this spring because it will be my first real lacrosse season in college and I am excited to see how well we do as a team and how we perform after all the hard work we have put into lacrosse.

Question: What is your favorite thing about UVa and being a student-athlete?
Gardner: My favorite part about being a student athlete is having our own place on campus, JPJ. It’s fun to go to dinner and recognize half the people in the dinning hall. And study hall is nice to have a place to print off papers for classes and get extra help that isn’t necessarily available to all students.

Question: What do you miss most about high school and home?
Gardner: I definitely miss my family and friends. It is weird having a completely new group of friends, but I still keep in contact with most of my friends from home and talk to my family as much as possible. It’s a bit different coming back to dorms, and not my home.

Question: What are your goals for the upcoming season?
Gardner: My goals for this upcoming season are to continue working hard and becoming a smarter and stronger player. As well as enjoying my time with all my teammates. It’s weird to think the seniors will not all be here next year, so I really want to appreciate the time I have with such great girls.

Question: Why did you choose to play at Virginia?
Gardner: I chose to play for Virginia because of the competitive culture on campus. Not only on the playing field but in the classroom as well. Virginia has a great reputation as a University and their athletic programs are great.

Question: What do you hope to accomplish before you graduate?
Gardner: A National Championship would be amazing!

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