(Nov. 28, 2014) When Sophie Brennan accompanied a friend on a visit to see her sisters at Furman University in Greenville, S.C., she thought it was a school she could see herself attending.
Brennan was only in middle school at the time.
“It was the first college I ever saw. I really liked the school,” the Worcester Prep senior said. “When I started looking at colleges, I never found one I liked more than Furman. Lacrosse was a perfect fit on top of loving the school.”
She took her official visit to the school in early October. She stayed with a player on the lacrosse team and met several others girls. Brennan also had the opportunity to watch one of the Paladins’ scrimmages.
“The girls are outgoing. I feel like they have similar personalities and some of the same interests,” Brennan said.
This is the program’s first year as an official Division I varsity sport.
“Two girls on the team [freshman Meg Lingo and sophomore Molly Marshall] went to Worcester,” Brennan said. “They both love it there.”
Brennan said she is looking forward to playing with her former Worcester Prep teammates again.
She committed to play for Furman at the end of June. It was officially announced last Thursday during a ceremony at the Berlin high school.
“I’m really excited. I love the people there, [the school is] strong academically and it’s a good size for me,” Brennan said. “The campus is big for the amount of students [about 3,000], and Greenville is beautiful.”
Brennan received academic and athletic scholarships.
The 16-year-old has been playing lacrosse since she was 6. She competes for the Eastern Shore Lacrosse Club based in Lewes, Del.
Not only does Brennan play lacrosse for Worcester, but she has also been a member of the school’s soccer and basketball teams since her freshman year.
She finished her final soccer season as a Lady Mallard at the end of October and basketball started about three weeks ago.
In the spring, Brennan will step on the field for her last lacrosse season at Worcester.
“I’m looking forward to it, but it’s sad that it’s my last year,” the midfielder said.
“We definitely want to go undefeated like last year [15-0] and hopefully I can be a leader for the younger girls since we lost so many seniors [to graduation],” Brennan said.
Allie Gamble, coach of the Prep squad last season, said Brennan is a leader on and off the field.
“Sophie contributed to our undefeated season in 2014 in many ways. Sophie is the kind of player you can depend on to work hard during practice each and every day,” Gamble said. “Her skills in the midfield and the defensive end especially helped our team achieve our goal last year by going undefeated and winning the Eastern Shore Independent Athletic Conference [championship].”
Brennan said she prefers to play in the midfield, but she will take the field where she is needed. She hopes to be a strong contributor and become a key player for the Furman squad.
“With a new program, it’s exciting because you have a chance to make an impact,” she said.
Gamble said Brennan is an all-around good lacrosse player and the type of athlete a coach can put into any position and feel confident in her ability to get the job done.
“Since my younger sister [Paige Gamble, a sophomore] attends Furman University and plays lacrosse there, I have seen the way the girls play as a team together. Although Furman is a new team, the girls really know how to play lacrosse and they know what it takes to win. That being said, Sophie will fit right in,” Gamble said. “She has the speed and stick skills to succeed at the D-I level and I look forward to watching her play in the 2016 season at Furman. Sophie will be able to fill any spot on the field that they need filled, whether it be attack, midfield, or defense.”
Gamble said Brennan will be an excellent contribution to the Furman lacrosse team.
Brennan doesn’t know what she wants to major in yet, but said she hopes to “find something I love and want to do the rest of my life.”
Since Brennan plays club lacrosse and three sports at Worcester all while maintaining high grades, she thinks she will be able to keep her academics up and play year-round lacrosse at Furman.