After an excessive refueling delay caused one of our contributors to miss her international connection, she was rebooked and rerouted on a flight to London last night. When Kristen finally arrived at her new gate, exhausted and annoyed, the situation suddenly took a turn for the inspiring when she realized she’d be flying across the pond with seven-time world champions, the U.S. Women’s Lacrosse Team. What she then learned is that these badass women are not only on a mission to bring home the team’s third straight gold medal (eighth overall) at next week’s Women’s World Cup, they are also blazing a trail to help bring their sport to the Olympics for the first time ever.

En route to the Federation of International Lacrosse 2017 Women’s World Cup (July 12-22) in Guildford, England, the members of Team USA were scattered all over the boarding area. But 7 of the women, seated together, were kind enough to indulge our request – orchestrated via Kristen – for this impromptu photo and a quick chat about their journey. Pictured above from left to right:

Brooke Griffin – #20, Maryland, 2015
Alyssa Murray – #17, Syracuse, 2014
Michelle Tumolo –  #35, Syracuse, 2013
Alex Aust – #10, Maryland, 2013
Kayla Treanor – #12, Syracuse, 2016
Taylor Cummings – #21, Maryland, 2016
Marie McCool – #25, North Carolina, 2018

They are among the 18 determined players on the U.S. Women’s Lacrosse Team aiming for another World Cup win and hoping that the elite level of skill and play they deliver will help set the stage for the debut of women’s lacrosse at the 2024 Summer Olympics.

“It is truly inspiring to see this group of players as the pioneers in the Olympic movement paving the way for future generations of lacrosse players…”

Jess Wilk, one of the 3 assistant coaches leading the U.S. Women’s Lacrosse Team into “a new era for the sport”, recently talked about what this summer’s games mean. “It is truly inspiring to see this group of players as the pioneers in the Olympic movement paving the way for future generations of lacrosse players, the way so many of the women who came before them were innovators in their eras with the players and teams in the 60’s and 70’s spreading lacrosse across the globe or ushering the women’s game into the World Cup in 1982.”

The July 2017 tournament in Guildford marks the 35 year anniversary of the first-ever Women’s World Cup, which was hosted in England, as well, Nottingham specifically. Team USA dominated that debut championship, and has won nearly every Women’s World Cup since (1982, 1989, 1993, 1997, 2001, 2009, 2013), with the exception of 1986 and 2005 when it finished second behind Australia.

While we wish much luck to the 25 teams competing at the 2017 Women’s World Cup, we can’t help but be partial to the women representing our home country. So here’s to them crushing it and winning the gold again this year. Go Team USA!