Strength of Community: Play for Seton Hill

The Seton Hill Women's Lacrosse Team
The Seton Hill Women’s Lacrosse Team

The Seton Hill University women’s lacrosse team was struck with tragedy on March 16th when their bus crashed on their way to an away game killing the driver, the head coach, and her unborn child. This story is heart wrenching, and as a former college lacrosse player, it hits close to home.

We all take buses to away games. Coaches typically sit up front, players in the back, and there is a spirited tension in the air. We are thinking about the competition, our pregame rituals, and jamming to a pump-up mix, never considering that something horrible could happen at any given moment. My heart pours out for the players and coaches still, who have had that comfort taken away, as well as their families, and the Seton Hill community who are dealing with this unimaginable loss.

With all the coverage of this tragedy has come an outpouring of support stemming from the tight-knit community formed by the sport of lacrosse.  And if you are looking for a silver lining (if that is even possible), then search for these hashtags on Instagram and Twitter: #play4shu #setonhill #onelaxfamily. The overwhelming amount of support that continues to come from lacrosse teams from youth to high school to college is jawdropping and it’s heartwarming to know that we acknowledge their loss, remember them, and want to show love and support to Seton Hill.

Saint Mary's College of California plays for SHU
Saint Mary’s College of California plays for SHU

The Facebook page called Play for Seton Hill has over 11,000 ‘likes’ and is updated daily with photos and messages of teams taking a moment of silence, adding red and yellow tape to their stick and cleats, writing K.Q. (initials of late coach Kristina Quigley) and S.H.U. on their arms.

Playing 4 Seton Hill
Playing 4 Seton Hill

These uses of social media remind us how connected we are and pay tribute to the strength of the lacrosse community. We support each other in times of sadness and would never wish this tragedy on our biggest rival. We are indeed one lax family and our ability to share our support is unending. We take the hand of an opponent for a moment of silence before a game, and acknowledge the honor it is to be alive, to be playing the sport we love, while remembering those that have come and gone before us.

On behalf of the community, we send our sincerest condolences to families and those affected by this tragic event, we hope you continue to find strength in each other, all of us, and the sport of lacrosse.