By Matt Jenkins
---- — Even after Natalie Soliozy had left Johns Hopkins University behind on her lacrosse recruiting trail last year, the Baltimore school just didn’t seem ready to let her go.
“It came down to a couple of schools, and whenever I was visiting other schools, all I could think of was Hopkins,” said Soliozy, an Ipswich High School senior. “They were always in my head.”
The high-scoring Soliozy made it official yesterday afternoon, signing her national letter of intent to attend and play women’s lacrosse for Division 1 Johns Hopkins University.
Johns Hopkins has an excellent lacrosse program, last year finishing the season ranked No. 17 in the country, according to LaxPower.
“Part of the reason I like it is because it has a (lacrosse) history,” Soliozy said. “It gave me a really good feeling. A lot of people care about lacrosse there — and it’s a huge part of my life.”
Soliozy, through three years at Ipswich High, has shown to have a nose for the net. She has scored 110 goals and dished out 132 assists in her time as a Tiger.
Whether or not all that scoring translates to the college game remains to be seen, but Soliozy is willing to do anything to get on the field and help the Blue Jays win.
“I’m not exactly sure (where I’ll play). I do play midfield so I could go either way, defense or attack,” Soliozy said. “I did like how (Hopkins coach Janine Tucker) understood me as a player.”
Known as a scorer and playmaker, Soliozy also proved she has versatility last spring as a junior. She scooped 64 ground balls, almost as much as she had accumulated in her first two years combined (70). In addition, she produced 105 draw controls.
Soliozy has had an impressive lacrosse career, especially for someone who had to make a choice about playing at a young age. She began playing lacrosse when she was in the fifth grade, but eventually had to choose between two things she loved — lacrosse and horseback riding.
“I came to a decision and went with lacrosse. I always played it and fell in love with it,” Soliozy said. “I’ve been thinking about colleges since I was in the eighth grade and playing on a club team (Revolution Lacrosse). I wanted to play to my highest ability and wanted to play in college.
“It is a relief,” she added of the recruiting process being over with. “I felt it motivated me to keep myself going, and I’m prepared to be a freshman.”
Before that freshman year of college happens, however, Soliozy has some goals remaining for her team at Ipswich.
“I hope to get everyone ready for every game,” Soliozy said. “Maybe we’ll play Winchester (in the state tournament) again; we lost to them last year, and it would be great to have another game against them. We lost a lot of seniors (from last season), but we still have a lot of players back, and I hope we can play as a unit and not individuals.”