Split Dodging With Georgetown's Sophia Thomas
Presented by STX
What I Do Off the Field
I was an all-conference soccer player in high school. My split dodge in lacrosse is definitely the same as my move in soccer. I played forward in soccer, so I was shooter up at the top. I would get the ball, slow down and then quickly change directions. It's completely different speed wise — lacrosse is faster. As a midfielder, I'm only on the field for five minutes or so sprinting, which is nice. In soccer, we would play the whole game, sprinting every now and then when we had the ball. I was never on a club team for soccer, so I never really considered playing in college. The team aspect in lacrosse is much different, and I like that. I played against Barb Black, our goalie, in high school. An old rivalry. We always talk about our old memories. Before games and practice, I always tie my shoes the same way — around the bottom and then up to the top, kind of soccer-style. I've always done that.
Coming to Georgetown, you have to pick what school you want to enter. We have four different ones, but I went straight into Georgetown wanting to major in biology. I want to be a physical therapist. It's three more years of school. I'll probably look into volunteer coaching somewhere while completing that. An old teammate, Molly Ford, does this thing right now where she coaches abroad and teaches at the same time. I was thinking about doing that too, taking some time off between school. As far as physical therapy, I've always been interested in the muscles and the sports aspect. I'm taking a mammalian physiology class right now, and I'm working on a report about how muscle recovery is affected by the drinks you have after exercise — chocolate milk, Gatorade and alcohol. Chocolate milk is the No. 1 go-to drink. The glucose to your muscles is better supplied by chocolate milk.
We do certain team events in the fall, usually every Friday. We'll play football, soccer dodge ball, kickball and capture the flag. Dodge ball was definitely the team favorite. You're pegging people with balls, which is kind of fun. Some of us are not very good at them, but I'll show off my soccer skills. We're all really competitive, and our competitive spirit just transfers over into that setting. It's fun being able to do something different with the same teammates. You're still building the team spirit. And coach Ricky Fried will play with us too. We had a really good football tournament, actually, but it was kind of disorganized — a bunch of girls running everywhere. It was more like 5-v-5 with a bunch of people running around. Kelyn Freedman was our quarterback. A couple of us can catch the ball, and others can't. I played receiver and cornerback. It was two-hand touch, not tackle, but it did get a little physical.
My Guilty Pleasure
Frozen yogurt from Pinkberry. We just got that here. You get to pick your flavor and then add all the toppings you want. My order is the original tart yogurt with strawberries, chocolate chips and granola. I go at least twice a week. It's right off campus, about a mile. Doesn't matter the weather, we're going to make the trip. It opened at the beginning of the year, during the summer. My roommate Rosie Corcoran and I, we always stop there. Also, as a team we have "IDPs," which is where we break into three different groups with each coach for three months as team bonding. We do activities, and recently my group with coach Erin Hellmold got Pinkberry together.
I like to have a good time. We have a good group of friends in our grade. There are eight of us. We're a little crazy. I live with Rosie Corcoran and Lauren Gray, and there's a house of five more of us — field hockey players. We're always hanging out. Other teams always say, "Wow, you guys hang out a lot." It has plusses and minuses, but I love it. We're reading a book as a group, "The Hunger Games." Nerds, I know. The movie is coming out, and we're going to see it together. I'm still working on the first one, but a couple have read all of them. We watch movies together. Our favorite is probably "Four Brothers." We all cook together. We can't really cook, but the things we can we cook a lot of: red peppers, eggs and pizza. The field hockey players legitimately make a new baked good every single week, so we'll always have cake or chocolate chip cookies at the house.
My Go-To Drills
Recently we've been doing a lot of shooting drills, passing from behind up to the top. Someone will come at you, and you get to do whatever dodge you'd like. You can go inside or outside, so it works on your creativity. It's a one-on-one passing from behind, but you're shooting from outside. Breaking off that, we have the "Yale Drill," which is 4-v-3, set up into a box right in front of the goal. You can work on both outside and inside shots.
My Favorite Exercise
We do a lot of lifting with our body weight, using TRX suspension training bands. They come down from the lifting set-up. We do different things: Hamstring pulls, where you pull your legs in, or knee tucks, which is a push-up position where you pull your legs in. It's nice because you're not lifting the dead weight, but they help with hamstring and lower back strength. They also help you loosen up or get a quick start.
A version of this article appears in the April issue of Lacrosse Magazine, the flagship publication of US Lacrosse. Don't get the mag? Join US Lacrosse and its 400,000-plus members today to start your subscription.