HAVERFORD, Pa. – The Haverford Women's Lacrosse team has announced its 2018 schedule. The Fords will begin a new era with first year Head Coach Katie Zichelli at the helm of the Fords. Zichelli comes to Haverford after spending the last three seasons as the assistant coach/associate head coach at conference foe Franklin & Marshall. Last season, Haverford finished with an 8-8 record, marking the fifth consecutive season the team has finished at or above .500.
Zichelli will immediately be thrust into one of the most challenging slates in the Centennial Conference as Fords will face off with both of the national finalists in the upcoming season. The squad heads to national runner-up TCNJ on March 1 and national champion Gettysburg on April 14. In total, the schedule features games against four NCAA tournament teams from a season ago, as the Fords host NCAA second round participant Cabrini and third round entrant Franklin & Marshall.
The season begins at Arcadia on February 24. The matchup will be the first ever varsity meeting between the two suburban Philadelphia programs. The month of March begins in earnest for the Fords with the aforementioned road matchup with the national runner-up lions of TCNJ. The two squads have not met since 2000. The matchup will be only the third regular season contest between the programs.
Home matchups with Scranton (March 3) and Cabrini (March 10) dot the non-conference schedule ahead of a spring break trip to Virginia to face off with Randolph-Macon (March 13) and Christopher Newport (March 15). Last season, the Fords split with the two schools from the Old Dominion State at home, falling 17-14 to CNU before taking down the Yellow Jackets of Randolph-Macon, 16-10.
Conference play begins with a trip to McDaniel (March 24) before Haverford hosts a brief non-conference excursion against Eastern (March 27). The Fords jump right back into conference play with a showdown against perennial contender Franklin & Marshall (March 31) as Zichelli faces off with her former team for the first time as head coach.
April begins with a midweek trip to Muhlenberg (April 4) and a Saturday home contest with Dickinson (April 7). A trip to the defending national champion Bullets of Gettysburg is slated for Saturday April 14, before the Fords return home for three of the final four regular season contests. The homestand will see the Fords face off with Washington College (April 18), Ursinus (April 21) and Bryn Mawr (April 25). The regular season concludes with the annual Hood Trophy matchup at Tri-Co rival Swarthmore (April 28).
The Centennial Conference playoffs begin May 2 with the semifinals taking place May 5 and the championship the next day (May 6). Haverford has been to the conference tournament five times in program history including appearances in three of the past five seasons. After falling short of the tourmament a season ago, the Fords will be poised for a return trip in Zichelli's first campaign.
Haverford returns four of its five leading goal scorers to the team in 2017 as the Fords welcome back Allie Gibbons and Julia Manetta, who partnered up to help lead the offensive attack in 2017. A strong junior class will anchor the team in 2017 as All-Centennial honoree Madison Jones will again fortify the backline with fellow senior Alyssa Sherman also playing a key role. Molly Lausten and Kate Sollee will be counted upon as scoring threats on the attacking end. Haverford returns all three goalkeepers including Rachel Romens who will be back for her senior campaign between the pipes.