Captains’ magical touch

The only recruiting class by coach Christy Malone to stay all four years made the university’s lacrosse program a force

By Tony Lee, editor in chief, @sHecKii

ST. BONAVENTURE (March 10) — Christine Hanley, Catie Greene and Jill Remick entered the university as head lacrosse coach Christy Malone’s freshmen recruits.

Three years later, they leave as the catalyst that made St. Bonaventure University’s lacrosse program relevant again. 

“They are really the group that set the whole foundation down and really laid the tracks for (future) teams to follow,” Malone said. “I think they’re a huge part of my career and a huge part for the lacrosse program here at Bonaventure.”

Whether its Greene’s perfect 4.0 GPA or Hanley’s Atlantic 10 Conference awards, Malone said the senior captains have became the epitome of athletes teammates not only want to be around but model after.

Malone said Greene, Hanley and Remick, who was accepted into George Washington’s medical program, are the only athletes she has coached all four years. 

“I think they are the only (recruiting) class that really got me,” she said. “I do cherish that they saw the vision I had from freshman year and they still stuck with me until senior year.”

That vision included wins against well-known athletic programs like Connecticut — a game all the lacrosse players and coaching staff remembers vividly. 

“We had the mindset of if we didn’t know if we’re going to win or not because they are a really good team,” Hanley said of the 11-10 away victory on Feb. 29, 2010. “Throughout the game, coach kept saying stuff to motivate us.”  

During the four years, Greene, a Islip Terrace, N.Y. native, said on the team developed a special bond. 

“I don’t think we really mind coming to practice,” she said of the players and coaches. 

That is because practice is fun and filled with jokes, something Malone said that helps her job of coaching 29 women less taxing.

“They are totally immature, but I’m OK with that at certain times,” she said of the captains. “Times on my job it’s very stressful, and for them to make me crack a smile and put things into perspective, it is really needed.”

Greene gave an example.

“One time Coach was talking to Crissy about changing something,” she said, “and I walked passed (Hanley) and told her, ‘Coach thinks you are a (wussy).’”

Greene said Marcus Nelson, an assistant coach who started off as a team manager, also contributes to the comedic shenanigans that makes the overall experience fun.

“Our whole team is so close,” she said. “When we go out on weekends, we’re together. When we’re here, we’re together. I walk through the RC and someone’s doing something stupid, usually Marcus, and I get to laugh about it.”

Nelson, who attended some classes with lacrosse players, said he got to hang out with them. Because of that, especially for the captains, he said “it’s like watching your little sisters grow up and be something great.”

“Watching them playing on the field is one of the most satisfying things to do because you know where they came from,” Nelson said. “And where they are now … it’s just awesome.”

Hanley, a Syracuse, N.Y., said when the three captains became freshmen dorm mates at Shay Hall, none of them expected this type of satisfying experience.

“I can’t say I thought that we’d all be captains together, but I’m glad it turned out that way,” Hanley said. “I think we work really well together.”

When asked about what Greene and Hanley thought their legacy will be, Hanley said she hopes people just remembers them.

Greene said that won’t be a problem for Hanley.

“If you come to one of our games, you’re going to see this girl fly from one side of a field to another,” she said of Hanley. “Like, everyone remembers that when they come out to the field.”

After graduating, Greene, currently in St. Bonaventure’s master’s program on mental health, is waiting back on other graduate schools before making a final decision, and Hanley, a childhood psychology major, wants to be a graduate assistant at St. Bonaventure.

Remick, a Rensselaer, N.Y. native, will complete her St. Bonaventure-George Washington University School of Medicine Early Assurance Program and attend medical school after graduation. 

The three captains came into their freshmen year looking forward to joining a lacrosse team. 

They leave knowing they left the program in a better place. 

“(Malone) really took our program from kind of nothing to now we couldn’t be happier than how it looks,” Greene said.

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