All In All, A Great Freshman Season

We were really disappointed how we didn’t come out with an Atlantic 10 championship a week ago Sunday. We lost to Massachusetts in the final and we’re looking forward to coming back next year and getting another shot at them.

I can’t believe how fast this year went by. It was even quicker than high school. In general it was a great first-year experience as a college student. I learned a lot about being independent and not having your parents there doing everything for you, so I’ve grown a lot that way. And I learned a lot about time management being the key to surviving at the college level.

For a lacrosse standpoint, it was a really big transition from high school to college. You learn a lot more, how to be more aggressive and how your life really does revolve around lacrosse. I got a little taste of that playing volleyball at Darien but not as much during the lacrosse season.

I was really happy with how I contributed to the team. I still think I could have done much more, but overall I was pretty happy. I didn’t really think I’d be able to make an impact on the D1 level as a freshman and then realized I could. The hardest change was the time commitment you have to make, with the training, practices and juggling school work and everything. It was pretty tough.

My coach at our end-of-season meeting said she could definitely use my size in the midfield and how it will be an advantage to our team, so I will be changing positions so I can see both ends of the field. It might not be fun busting my butt this summer, but I think it’s going to be great. Now I will see so much more of the game because you are more involved, not just on defense but transition and attack.

Mary Flowers did an amazing job for us this year as a sophomore. She was the A-10 Midfielder of the Year. I’m hoping to try and have the same sort of success.

I’ve been on defense for some reps so I have played both positions, but not continuously. The big thing is you have to be in a whole lot better shape.

I definitely am going to train at BlueStreak this summer and will be looking into getting a trainer for me and my sister Charlett, who is the captain of the Darien JV team.

School ended on Friday with my last exam, but I am staying down here for another week. I am at Myrtle Beach right not for what is called Beach Week, where almost all of Richmond comes down and rents houses and hotels. We are out on the beach all day and hang out at night. It’s nice to relax.

Looking back it was a great first year of college and I’ve grown as a person and Division I athlete, and I can’t wait to succeed and improve even more during my next three years at Richmond.

I hope you all have a good summer.

Editor’s Note: This is Sam’s last post. I want to thank her for all the time, effort and care she has put into this project. Despite a busy schedule, she always made herself available, even when there are times I know she had more pressing matters to attend to. She put the same dedication into her blog that she did playing lacrosse and everything else in her life. When I came up with this idea for a freshman student-athlete to write a year-long blog about the experience, I thought I found the perfect person in Sam.

I was right.

— Dave Ruden