BOSTON - A trio of Jacksonville University women's lacrosse players made history as Emily Barton, Ashtyn Hiron, and Emily Poelma were drafted in the 2018 United Women's Lacrosse League (UWLX) College Draft last week, as announced by the UWLX.
"We are proud of all these young women; all three are great leaders and have amazing plans lined up after graduation," stated Head Coach Mindy McCord.
The Baltimore Ride selected all three Dolphins as Hiron was chosen in the fifth round as the 17th overall selection, Poelma in the seventh round as the 25th overall pick, and Barton in the ninth round as the 33rd overall selection.
A recent addition to the professional lacrosse scene in the United States, the United Women's Lacrosse League held its inaugural season in the summer of 2016 with four founding teams – the Baltimore Ride, the Boston Storm, the Long Island Sound, and the Philadelphia Force.
Consisting of 16 rounds, with four picks each round, the draft saw a total of 63 current collegiate women's lacrosse players across Divisions I and II selected to one of the four teams in the league.
"It's nice to see UWLAX taking a page from the MLL (Major League Lacrosse) and digging deeper into the mid-major programs that have great players. We work hard to develop players from day one and they become much different by the time they graduate," added McCord. "Having three of the first 33 picks puts our program in rare air with programs like Syracuse, UNC, Northwestern, Stony Brook, and JMU."
A senior midfielder from Perth, Australia, Hiron is the first player in both JU program history and ASUN Conference history, to be drafted into the professional women's lacrosse ranks. The 2016 ASUN Defensive Player of the Year, Hiron is also a two-time All-ASUN First Team (2016, 2017) and ASUN All-Tournament Team (2015, 2016) selection and helped the Dolphins to a pair of ASUN Tournament titles in 2015 and 2017. With international experience playing for the Australian Women's National Team, Hiron most recently competed for the Aussies this past summer in the 2017 FIL Women's World Cup in England and the 2017 World Games in Poland.
Pursuing her MBA while at JU, Poelma is a fifth-year senior goalkeeper who spent her first four seasons and earned her bachelor's degree at James Madison. As a redshirt-junior for the Dukes in 2017, Poelma posted a 9.38 goals-against average and totaled 140 saves (.462) to help JMU to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. With a 14-7 record in 2017, the Fairport, N.Y. native brings a wealth of knowledge between the pipes for the Dolphins.
An Annapolis, Md. native, Barton helped the Dolphins to a pair of ASUN Tournament Championships with the Dolphins, in 2015 and 2017, and was named to the ASUN All-Tournament Team this past spring. A tenacious defender, the senior has totaled 79 ground balls and 55 caused turnovers in her career at JU, including season bests in both categories in 2017 with 39 ground balls and 29 caused turnovers.
The league's schedule is consists of nine weeks of play beginning in late May, with the championship held in early August.
The mission of the UWLX – "to create and increase opportunities for women in professional sports … while elevating women's professional sports to a financially successful family sports entertainment product," – brings an increase of opportunities for women in all areas of the professional sports industry, from athletes, management, administration, and general leadership.
Catch Barton, Hiron, and Poelma in action as the Dolphins open the 2018 season Feb. 11 against Michigan.
Below is a full listing from the 2018 UWLX College Draft:
1. Kylie Ohlmiller, A, Boston Storm (Stony Brook)
2. Brittany Read, G, Philadelphia Force (Oregon)
3. Kenzie Kent, A, Boston Storm (Boston College)
4. Shelby Fredericks, A, Long Island Sound (Northwestern)
5. Maggie Bill, M, Long Island Sound (North Carolina)
6. Megan Whittle, A, Baltimore Ride (Maryland)
7. Marie McCool, M, Philadelphia Force (North Carolina)
8. Ela Hazar, A/M, Boston Storm (North Carolina)
9. Emily Kenul, A, Baltimore Ride (Johns Hopkins)
10. Brooke Gubitosi, D, Philadelphia Force (Stony Brook)
11. Sheila Nesselbush, M, Boston Storm (Northwestern)
12. Maddie Crutchfield, M, Long Island Sound (Duke)
13. Taylor Gait, M, Long Island Sound (Syracuse)
14. Riley Donahue, A, Boston Storm (Syracuse)
15. Erica Evans, M, Philadelphia Force (Canisius)
16. Haley Warden, M, Baltimore Ride (James Madison)
17. Ashtyn Hiron, D, Baltimore Ride (Jacksonville)
18. Sam DiSalvo, M, Philadelphia Force (Stony Brook)
19. Katie O'Donnell, M, Boston Storm (Penn State)
20. Kasey Behr, A, Long Island Sound (Virginia)
21. Mia DiBello, D, Long Island Sound (Syracuse)
22. Shannon Fitzgerald, M, Boston Storm (James Madison)
23. Elena Romesburg, M, Philadelphia Force (James Madison)
24. Taylor Hensh, A, Baltimore Ride (Maryland)
25. Emily Poelma, G, Baltimore Ride (James Madison/Jacksonville)
26. Lindsay Darrell, D, Philadelphia Force (Northwestern)
27. Holly Turner, A, Boston Storm (UMass)
28. Shayna Pirreca, M, Long Island Sound (Florida)
29. Aniya Flanagan, D, Long Island Sound (Florida)
30. Emma Powlin, D, Boston Storm (Albany)
31. Erica Perrotta, M, Philadelphia Force (High Point)
32. Emily Rogers-Healion, A, Baltimore Ride (Penn)
33. Emily Barton, D, Baltimore Ride (Jacksonville)
34. Carolyn Carrera, D, Philadelphia Force (Stony Brook)
35. Emily Howell, D, Boston Storm (Louisville)
36. Courtney Murphy, A, Long Island Sound (Stony Brook)
37. Jill Zubillaga, D, Long Island Sound (Oregon)
38. Danita Stroup, A, Boston Storm (Northwestern)
39. Maggie Gallagher, M, Philadelphia Force (Penn State)
40. Kyra Harney, A, Baltimore Ride (Duke)
41. Molly Cobb, M, Long Island Sound (Notre Dame)
42. Drew Shapiro, M, Boston Storm (Hofstra)
43. Michele Scanell, M, Philadelphia Force (Adelphi)
44. Allie Pavinelli, M, Baltimore Ride (Florida)
45. Neena Merola, M, Long Island Sound (Syracuse)
46. Jen Reininger, M, Boston Storm (Cainsius)
47. Kelly Glatthorn, D, Philadelphia Force (Virginia Tech)
48. Kaitlyn Montalbano, M, Baltimore Ride (Towson)
49. Emily Gillingham, M, Long Island Sound (Towson)
50. Amanda Casten, D, Boston Storm (Rutgers)
51. Kaileen Hart, A, Philadelphia Force (Boston College)
52. Marissa Davey, M, Baltimore Ride (Virginia Tech)
53. Emma Schurr, M, Long Island Sound (Boston College)
54. Kathy Rudkin, D, Boston Storm (Maryland)
55. Alie Jimerson, A, Philadelphia (Syracuse)
56. Joey Coffy, M, Baltimore Ride (Cornell)
57. Taylor Reed, M, Long Island Sound (Cornell)
58. Elena Schorr, D/M, Boston Storm (Hofstra)
59. Tiffany Zullo, D/M, Philadelphia Force (Stony Brook)
60. Morgan Conroy, G, Baltimore Ride (St. Bonaventure)
61. Alex Condon, M, Baltimore Ride (Penn)
62. Rachel Van Der Kolk, G, Baltimore Ride (Virginia)
63. Emma Schai, M, Baltimore Ride (Stony Brook)