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Academy of Notre Dame attack Hannah Gillespie is Main Line Girls Athlete of the Week

The junior attack is Notre Dame’s leading scorer, with 30 goals and five assists for the Irish (7-4 as of April 23). She also has caused 14 turnovers, and earlier this month was named Brine/USL High School Girls Player of the Week for the Mid-Atlantic region. She scored three goals in the Irish’s win against national powerhouse St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes. Last spring, she received All-Main Line girls’ lacrosse honors. Notre Dame head coach Xan Zimatore said, “Hannah is always a spark on the attacking end. I can always count on her when we are in need of a goal, a caused turnover in our ride or just pumping the team up when we are in a lull.”

Q: What do you think has been the biggest key to your prolific offense this season?

A: I can attribute my offensive performance this year to the way our offensive unit has gelled, creating opportunities off of each other.

Q: Coach Zimatore has mentioned your improvement over last season. Tell us a little about your off-season lacrosse training after last spring – what you did to improve.

A: After last season, I wanted to overall improve my stick skills. With the mentoring of Bob Mongeluzzi, I was able to improve my 1v1 dodging and become more confident with the ball.

Q: What is your most vivid memory of the win against St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes? If it was a particular play, can you share with us how the play developed, and your role in it?

A: The play that stood out to me the most was an assist I had to Kelly Coyle off of an eight meter shot, putting Notre Dame up 3-0 early. Then, with seconds left, our goalie, Jackie Lanzalotto, made the game-winning save off of a free position shot to secure the win, it was awesome!

Q: You have played both midfield and attack. What attracted you to the attack position? What attributes do you feel are most important for an attack player?

A: I think what attracted me most to the attack position was the constant motion plays. I really enjoy participating in the ride and transition. I believe an attacker needs to be aggressive to every ball and to have vision on the field.

Q: What was your first reaction when you found out you were named Brine/USL High School Girls Player of the Week for the Mid-Atlantic region? What does that honor mean to you?

A: I was shocked when I found out the news. This honor meant so much and I am extremely grateful to have received this recognition.

Q: You wear uniform jersey No. 3 for Notre Dame since your freshman year. Was there a reason you chose No. 3 – does this number have any significance to you?

A: Ever since my freshman year, the number three has always been my go-to. There is no significance to this number. I was given it as a freshman and it stuck.

Q: What part of your game are you working on most?

A: I just continue to work hard on my stick skills, dodges, and stamina.

Q: Who have been your biggest lacrosse mentors, and what was the most important thing each of them taught you?

A: My biggest lacrosse mentors are my high school coaches, Xan Zimatore and Maura Wilson. They have pushed me to be as conditioned and mentally prepared as I can be on the lacrosse field. My current club coach, Colleen Magarity; my former club coach, Kim Wenger; and Coach Mongo have helped and continue to help me strengthen my game and develop as a player.

Q: What is your favorite academic subject at school? Is there a career path that particularly interests you?

A: My favorite subject is English. Although I am not sure of what I want to do in the future, I hope to somewhat incorporate this into my career path.

Q: What extracurricular activities are you involved in at Notre Dame other than lacrosse? 

A: I try to be as involved as I can with service opportunities provided by Notre Dame. I enjoy volunteer work.

Fun facts – Hannah Gillespie

Favorite pre-game pump-up song: Revolution by Diplo.

Favorite team: Philadelphia Eagles.

Favorite place to visit: Avalon, N.J.

Favorite pre-game meal: Peanut butter toast with banana.

Family members: parents Pat and Shannon, brother Patrick, dogs Rudy and Artie.

(To be selected as Main Line Girls Athlete of the Week, a student-athlete must first be nominated by her coach.)

To view a gallery of the Main Line Girls Athletes of the Week from 2013 to date, click here

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