By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/9/14
The lacrosse community is mourning the death of Dartmouth College junior Blaine Steinberg, a former lacrosse and soccer standout at Penn Charter who passed away tragically and suddenly Friday.
Miss Steinberg was a two-time Academic All-American and captain for the Penn Charter lacrosse team. She also was captain of the Penn Charter soccer team.
She played one year of lacrosse at Dartmouth, but was unable to continue playing after suffering several concussions. She turned her passion to broadcasting and served as sports director for the college’s radio station, WFRD, according to The Valley News.
The Valley News reported that Miss Steinberg “fell ill and passed away suddenly this evening at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center,” Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon wrote in an email sent to students and staff Friday night.
Miss Steinberg played club lacrosse for Ultimate Lacrosse under coach Jen Duckenfield (Agnes Irwin head coach), who said that her former teammates are shocked at her loss.
“Blaine was a beautiful person inside and out and left a mark on me,” said Duckenfield “She was one of my favorites.
“This makes you realize how precious life is, when you lose someone like Blaine Steinberg. Everybody loved her. She brought so much joy to the world.”
Duckenfield said Miss Steinberg was devastated when she learned she had to give up lacrosse, but she quickly bounced back.
“She pursued commentating,” said Duckenfield “She didn’t lose her love of sports. She found another outlet. I know she was really hit hard by having to give up lacrosse.”
Duckenfield described Miss Steinberg as a happy, confident and outgoing person whose smile was infectious. She was profiled by Phillylacrosse.com (see article) during her junior year for creating and coaching a combined Fall Ball team with rival Germantown Academy players. Miss Steinberg was unable to play because she had torn her anterior cruciate ligament, but did not dwell on her misfortune.
“Blaine was more than friendly,” said Duckenfield. “She was warm and friendly and outgoing and everybody knew her. She would say hello to anybody with a big smile on her face.
“She also was a great competitor, a great soccer player, a great lacrosse player, a star student and a star student-athlete.”
Duckenfield said Blaine was very close to her younger sister, Leigh, a senior at PC.
“This is a terrible loss to the lacrosse community and all that knew her,” said Duckenfield. “Our thoughts are with her sister Leigh and parents Sid and Jill,”
A funeral will be held Monday at 1 p.m. at Main Line Reform Synagogue, 410 Montgomery Ave., Wynnewood.
“All her Ultimate teammates are playing college lacrosse and they are all coming home. My daughter, Alex (a starter at Vanderbilt), is one of them. She is hysterical. She is completely devastated. When you are close to someone that you play lacrosse with for many yerars, you think of them as your family.
“When you lose someone so vibrant, someone who loves life so much, it’s so hard.”
Said former Penn Charter coach Mary Fran Riffel: “Blaine was a very motivated, talented athlete who overcame many obstacles while playing lacrosse at Penn Charter. She was a strong captain and an incredible role model for her fellow teammates and peers. She will be greatly missed by the entire lacrosse community.”