Andi Raymond couldn’t do much more than watch her Towson teammates from the sideline last season. A pair of stress fractures in her lower back kept her out of action for eight months.
Wednesday, the redshirt junior attacker was finally at 100 percent and helped lead the No. 19 Tigers to a season-opening 11-6 win over UMBC with four goals and an assist.
“It was great,” Raymond said. “It’s been a long time coming, so it was good to be out there with my team again. Being sidelined by injury is hard for anybody, so to finally get back out there and get a win in the first game back is an awesome feeling.”
Two years ago the Grand Rapids, Mich., native led the Tigers with 68 points and 33 assists and tied for the team lead with 35 goals. Her return gives Towson a significant double scoring punch with Raymond and Ashleigh Rohrback, who had two goals and three assists in the win over UMBC.
The two have played only one season together because Rohrback redshirted the 2011 season with an injury. The Westminster graduate also missed the first six games of last season but returned to earn co-Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year honors.
Having both veterans back as well as a host of other scoring options in a seasoned attack should help the Tigers win a few of the games they lost by narrow margins last season. They opened 1-7, dropping five of those losses by three goals or less, before winning nine of their next 10 games to earn their second straight CAA title and reach the NCAA first round where they fell to Stony Brook in another tight contest, 8-6.
Raymond returned to action in the fall but took it slow. She did some things at 75 to 80 percent and didn’t play complete games to make sure she was fully recovered for spring, because, she said, the stress fractures were overuse injuries. She played in the Tigers’ win over the U.S. national team in a fall scrimmage and is thrilled to be back on the field full time.
“I think that’s an awesome statement for people to see that we can hang with the best of the best and that we’re better than they’re maybe thinking,” Raymond said. “It was nice for us because we know how good we can be and it pushes us to strive to do that every single game. I’m just so glad to be part of it.”