Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 7/9/13
From Press Release
Former Lehigh women’s lacrosse standout Lauren Dykstra is set to begin the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) Women’s World Cup on Wednesday with the Israel Women’s National Team. Dykstra was in Israel training with the team before arriving in Canada on Monday. Wednesday features opening ceremonies before game action runs July 11-20 at the Oshawa Civic Recreation Centre near Toronto, Canada.
“Playing for Israel is an amazing honor,” said Dykstra. “This is Israel’s very first team in the World Cup. I’m more than thrilled to be part of it. It’s the best competition I’m ever going to face. I can’t wait to get out on the field again.”
Israel begins pool play against No. 10 Germany Wednesday. The squad will then face No. 8 Scotland on Friday and No. 16 South Korea Sunday to wrap up pool play before facing Hong Kong Monday and No. 7 Japan Tuesday in crossover games. Two wins will guarantee Israel an appearance in the 12-team playoff, which begins July 17. Crossover matches will determine seeding and serve as tiebreakers if necessary.
Israel’s roster is composed of both Israeli players, as well as members of the Jewish diaspora, in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL).
“Not only do I get to play the sport I love again, but I’m also becoming an Israeli citizen so I get to become more in touch with my Jewish heritage,” said Dykstra. “We are also raising the awareness of the sport out in Israel and growing the popularity there. That’s another really exciting aspect.”
The team trained from July 1-7 in Ashkelon, Israel, before flying as a team to Toronto on Monday. While in Israel, several team members took part in community activities, including Dykstra who put on a clinic at the Bet Elazraki Children’s Home.
“My time at Lehigh has definitely helped me prepare for this World Cup experience,” said Dykstra. “I was in all types of different game situations, whether it be the Patriot League Championship Game, a back-and-forth rivalry game with Navy, or playing in Florida against a top 10 team. I feel like I’ve been in every type of game situation.”
Dykstra finished her standout collegiate career with a school and Patriot League record 257 career goals. She eclipsed 60 points all four seasons, earning First Team All-League honors every year as well. As a senior, Dykstra was featured in Sports Illustrated’s Faces in the Crowd.