Women’s lacrosse starts season on fire


Emily Heck

Junior midfielder Madison Iandoli goes for a shot against Averett University on Mar. 9. Iandoli contributed five goals for the victory..//Photo by Emily Heck/Guilford Athletics

The Guilford College women’s lacrosse team is off to a 5-2 start in their season.  This start is the best through the first seven games since the 2014 women’s lacrosse campaign. This mark through spring break comes as an improvement to a 4-3 start last year in Coach Charlotte Dixon-Graves inaugural campaign as head coach.

“We’ve had a lot of success early on in the season, but we have also had two tough losses.

What’s great though, is that every day we work to improve on something from the day before

and it shows,” said sophomore goalkeeper Kersten Daneau. “We learn from our mistakes and we know what it feels like to lose a game that should’ve been won, and that is something that really drives us to put forth our best effort all the


The strong start has been backed by several individual strong starts, none more statistically impressive than that of junior midfield Madison Iandoli. Iandoli leads the team in points (33), goals (23), ground balls (22), and caused turnovers (12).  Her marks in goals and points also currently have her ranked in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) at 2nd and third, respectively.

“We all work hard on and off the field. Putting in the extra time and effort shows up on the field and has helped get me to where I am today. My teammates are amazing and help push me every second. I wouldn’t be where I am without them,” said Iandoli, “Our team has some veterans on the field currently. We have people that have been playing together for 2-3 years right now. We trust each other and understand how one another plays. That is the biggest difference I’ve seen(this season).”

On the defensive end, sophomore Kersten Daneau has taken to the role of starting goalie with great poise. Through seven games the sophomore netminder has recorded a 46.4% save percentage, amassed 39 saves, and holds a goal against average of 6.43. Deneau’s goals against average stands currently as first in the ODAC and 28th in all of NCAA Division III.

“It’s new but not necessarily uncomfortable. I like to say that I thrive under pressure, and

especially since I’m the only goalie on the team there’s a good amount of pressure,” said Daneau. “Last year allowed me to become comfortable with the level of play that is required at the collegiate level and especially in a competitive conference like the ODAC. I also had a great mentor last year in Sarah Sedaghat and she helped me prepare for this leadership role by being such a great

example of what a leader should be.”

In the most impressive individual effort in a game  this season, sophomore attacker Audrey Helfenbein tallied 13 points in the Quakers’ March 2nd victory over Sweet Briar College. That performance broke the school record for points in a single game. When Helfenbein claimed the record, she surpassed Lily Colley’s 2014 12-point performance that held the record for 5 years.

Against the Vixens, the second-year attacker wasted no time in getting to work scoring 3 of her 5 goals in the first 6 minutes of the game. She tied the previous record of 12 points with an assist to Iandoli, 10 minutes into the second half. The 13th point came with 3 minutes left in the game as Helfenbein dished an assist to sophomore attacker Grace Moore, which was the 23rd and final goal of the game for the Quakers.

“It really helps that my teammates and I work together a lot, all of my goals (in the game) were assisted, and I think that I was able to keep my head up and  be calm enough to pass it out for assists,” said Helfenbein.

The Quakers begin conference play at home on Mar. 23 when they face Randolph-Macon College at 1:00 p.m. The team will look to improve on its ODAC record from last year, where they went 1-7 in conference play.

“We’ve had a lot of success early on in the season, but we have also had two tough losses.

What’s great though, is that every day we work to improve on something from the day before and it shows,” said Iandoli.