The New Jersey Storm announced its 23-person Opening Day roster today. The big news is: a 23-year old goalkeeper from Oradell, NJ named Ginny Capicchioni is on it. Capicchioni is the first woman in the 17-year history of the indoor National Lacrosse League ever named to a regular season roster. The former Sacred Heart University standout survived Storm rookie camp, veteran training camp, and two pre-season games before being selected by Head Coach/General Manager Jim Brady today.
Photo Credit: Garry Dunlap
"Ginny's good. She has to work on dealing with shooters of this caliber though and she's dedicated to doing that," Brady said, "How much she plays will be determined by how quickly she develops in practice."
Capicchioni played well in the Storm's pre-season 14-12 win at Buffalo on December 6th, saving ten of the 15 shots she faced in the second quarter. On December 14th, she gave up nine first half goals in a loss to the Philadelphia Wings, but settled down to allow only one goal in nine minutes of fourth quarter action. At Sacred Heart, Capicchioni was twice named Northeast Conference Field Hockey "Goalie of the Year" (1998, 2000) and three times named NEC Lacrosse "Goalie of the Year" (1999, 2000, and 2001). She ranked first nationally in total saves in field hockey in 2000, sixth nationally in lacrosse save percentage in 2000, and third nationally in lacrosse save percentage in 2001. The River Dell High School (NJ) graduate is currently a member of the Toyota women's traveling field lacrosse team. Capicchioni also brings the experience of playing on men's box lacrosse teams in Fairfield, CT, Hatboro, PA, and Aston, PA.
Other 2002-2003 roster highlights include: veterans Steve Sombrotto, Gordon Purdie, Shawn Nadelen, Scott Stewart, Paul Talmo, Cam Bomberry, and recently acquired scoring threats Roy Colsey and Mike Benedict. Second-year Stormer Billy LeFeuvre is New Jersey's leading returning goal scorer (20). Last year's top two goaltenders Matt Roik and Derek General also return.
"Generally, I think the team has more speed than last year which we're hoping will make us more competitive," Brady explained. "We have also signed three American rookies who should help us a lot at their respective positions - a left-shot forward Marc Morley and two strong defensemen who are good at picking up loose balls, Mike Laurano and Dan Chemotti."
Last season, the expansion Storm won four of its last six contests to finish at (5-11). The team averaged nearly 6,000 fans per home game at the Continental Airlines Arena. The Storm will play one final pre-season scrimmage this Saturday versus the New York Saints on Long Island before opening the regular season on the road versus the Rochester Knighthawks on Saturday, December 28 at 7:35 p.m. The team opens at home on Saturday, January 4 vs. the Columbus Landsharks at 7:30 p.m.