After a stellar regular season as a team, the Terrapin women’s lacrosse team has a pair of players up for the most prestigious individual award in the sport.
Senior midfielders Dana Dobbie and Kelly Kasper were announced as finalists for the Tewaaraton Trophy, which is given to the best player in the nation.
“It’s like the Heisman for football. [The Tewaaraton] is that for lacrosse,” Kasper said. “It’s a very huge honor and accomplishment.”
Although it’s a major individual achievement, both players have pointed out how strong the team has been this season, and credit their teammates for their recognition.
“Being nominated is just a testament to how strong our team is and how strong all my teammates are,” Dobbie said. “I don’t think I would be nominated if I wasn’t part of this Maryland team.”
“It says a lot about our team and that we have worked hard,” Kasper said. “It’s a lot of credit to our teammates and our coaches. We are very lucky to get there.”
Kasper is the fifth individual Terp to be a finalist for the Tewaaraton. Dobbie, who was a finalist last year as well, is just the second two-time finalist in Terp history.
“I transferred to Maryland and I had never been in the ACC or in an NCAA [tournament],” Dobbie said. “For me to get nominated under those circumstances was just shocking. “
Dobbie was just as surprised this time around, although her glowing resumé should have made it a foregone conclusion. The senior set the NCAA record for draw controls in a season with 114 and the career mark with 322. She was also a 2007 All-American, 2007 ACC Player of the Year and ranked as the third best player in the preseason nationwide by Inside Lacrosse.
“Some people come in and shine for one year then fall into the shadows, but she hasn’t,” Kasper said. “She has gotten better and better, and it shows that she is one of the best players in the nation.”
For Kasper, this is her first time as a finalist, and she was just as surprised and excited by the nomination.
Kasper has dished out 40 assists this season, seventh most in Terp history, was ranked the seventh best player in the nation by Inside Lacrosse in the preseason and is a two-time All-American and three-time All-ACC selection.
The last time a Terp won the award was 2001, the same year the Terps last won the national championship, when now-associate head coach Jen Adams won the Tewaaraton in its inaugural season.
“It’s huge just knowing that I am a part of something [Adams] was a part of,” Kasper said. “She is the best player in the world, and it’s just an honor to be a part of something that she almost started.”
With two teammates getting the nomination, both are excited about the ceremony and banquet May 29
“I would be excited for her and I know she’d be excited for me,” Kasper said. “Being there together is great for us because we can lean on each other and be there to support each other. We will go down there an just enjoy ourselves; its great to have someone there with you.”