The U.S. Elite Women's Lacrosse team will play its first intrasquad exhibition game at 6 p.m. today at Annapolis High School.
Although most of the players have been on the squad for at least a few years and several are veterans of last year's World Cup championship team, a new squad for 1994-95 was named in early June.
This year's 26-member elite squad includes 12 women with local connections, and all but one are expected to play tonight.
Among the top players is Carin Peterson, a Severna Park graduate who now coaches the Falcons. A member of the U.S. squad since 1985, Peterson scored the winning goal in last year's World Cup to lead the United States over England, 4-1, in the final in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Other World Cup veterans include Sue Heether, a Loyola graduate now coaching at Notre Dame Prep; Jennifer Ulehla, a Maryvale graduate; Amanda O'Leary, former assistant coach at Maryland; and Jessica Wilk, a Maryland graduate.
The squad also includes Michelle Uhlfelder, a Pikesville and Maryland graduate who missed the World Cup with an injury; Nora Maguire, assistant coach at Loyola; and Betsy Elder, a Severna Park and Maryland graduate in her first year on the elite squad. Maryland stars Kelly Amonte, Laura Harmon and Kerstin Manning also will play.
Three local high school graduates now on the developmental squad also will play tonight: Jenny Slingluff (Roland Park), Maryland's Randall Goldsborough (St. Mary's) and Loyola graduate Gina Roberts (Severna Park).
In addition to giving the players extra experience, the exhibition provides a showcase for the sport.
"Part of it is to spread the word about lacrosse," said Sue Stahl, head coach of the elite squad and coach at Old Dominion. "This shows a high level of play, and that's important, especially at this event where we have a lot of school kids."
The annual Starlight Express game for high school seniors from the Summer Stix League will follow the U.S. intrasquad game at 8 p.m.