posted 07.15.2011 at 11.57 a.m. by Clare Lochary

Christie Rampone's Short, Sweet Lacrosse Career

As if you needed another reason to root for Team USA in Sunday’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in the final versus Japan on Sunday: Defender and team captain Christie Rampone  was a laxer in college! Well, sort of. She played two games for Monmouth, where she was captain of both the basketball team and the soccer team. (She’s still the all-time leading scorer for the Hawks’ soccer program.) This New York Daily News profile of Rampone mentioned that she played soccer and lacrosse to stay in shape, so I dug further.

The Monmouth all-time lacrosse roster reports that she was a player during her senior year in 1997 (under her maiden name, Christie Pearce), and her official bio mentions that she played two games of lacrosse in college. Rampone is a self-described “sports nut” who made a point of trying a lot of different things. A quote from the NYDN piece: “"I was outside all the time. I played field hockey, basketball, soccer and ran a little track. I never focused on one sport. That's been great for me getting to this level because I never had any burn out.”

And now she’s a three-time Olympian who’s going for her second World Cup title. (Rampone was a very young reserve player on the legendary 1999 team that beat China in the best-attended, most-watched women’s sporting event of all time.) Rampone is a great example of why it’s important to play more than one sport: it makes you better at all of them, and prevents lax/soccer/whatever overload.

As for those two NCAA lacrosse games, I got in touch with Rampone’s agent Rob Raju, and he said this via e-mail: “In college she was just so athletic that the lacrosse coach asked her to come play and help the team. So she jumped right in having never played before.”

Raju added: “Christie is currently the oldest player on the USWNT and is still the fastest. She ran a 4.77 4 yd dash time this year. She also finished #1 out of 20 in the team fit testing. The average age of the team is 25 and Christie is 36 years old. What makes this even more amazing is that she has had two children, torn her ACL and suffers from Lymes Disease.”

So, in conclusion, Rampone is an athletic freak, and lacrosse is proud to claim her as one of our own. Go laxers, go multi-sport athletes, go Christie, and GO TEAM USA!

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