One hundred and thirty-five goals and 103 assists.
On April 20, Grace Gamache recorded her 238th career point and became the all-time point leader in FSU Women’s Lacrosse history.
“I was shocked, honestly,” Gamache said. “I had no idea I was even close, so it’s definitely super exciting.”
Gamache, an attack/midfielder, is often right in the thick of the action.
These positions require alot of responsibility. An attacker moves around the opposing team’s area, attempting to score. This position is solely offense. However, a midfielder plays both offense and defense, covering the opposing zone and their own.
Both positions require a lot of skill and stamina, as there is a lot of running involved.
“I have been playing midfield/attack since I can remember. I played some defense in high school, but when I got to college, the game was a lot more fast-paced, so my coach felt that I was more of an asset in the attacking zone,” Gamache said. “I have really found my role there and love the position.”
And she truly is an asset in the attacking zone, as Gamache has recorded 50-plus points every season she has played in an FSU jersey, a feat rarely accomplished by a Division III athlete.
Just last season, Gamache finished with 111 points, averaging a whopping 5.84 points a game.
With the abundance of points recorded throughout her career, she was always well on her way to securing the record.
Head Coach James Rippey said, “After her sophomore year – when she finished with more than 50 goals and 50 assists for us – it was more a matter of when rather than if she’ll break the school record.”
The fact that Gamache has recorded more assists than goals in her past two seasons makes breaking the record even more impressive.
It is very rare to be able to lead a school or team in points without being a little selfish.
But Gamache has a team-first mentality, as does the team itself, as they record an assist on 65 percent of the goals they’ve scored this season. This mentality has shaped the team into what it is now.
“Grace has certainly been one of the strongest players on our team and in the conference since her freshman year, when she won Rookie of the Year,” Rippey said. “But lax is played with 12 on the field at a time, more than any other sport, so our success and growth as a program certainly can’t be attributed to just one person. It’s a team, culture, family effort that speaks to the changes we have undergone.”
During Gamache’s time with the team, they have grown immensely, going from a last-place to a first-place team that is looking to make it back to the MASCAC Championship for the second-straight year.
“Our offense has evolved a lot since her freshman year in terms of complexity and depth,” Rippey said. “Grace is always one of the first players to grasp the new concepts and help her teammates get on board, too.”
The year before Gamache joined the Rams, the team averaged below 10 points per game.
But since her arrival, the team has never averaged fewer than 10 points per game.
They averaged 11.37 in her freshman season, 15.79 in her sophomore, and 13.88 this year.
Gamache never would have changed the team and broken the all-time points record if she hadn’t first been recruited to Framingham State.
“I saw Grace play for the first time during the winter of her sophomore year at a club tournament in New Hampshire. I started chatting with her grandfather, introduced myself, and passed along my card,” Rippey said.
He added, “That spring, Grace and her father came to FSU to see us play. They loved the campus and knew about the great reputation of our education program, but the product on the lacrosse field was lacking. It was my second year and we didn’t have any recruited players on the team yet. Grace might have been the best player on the team right then if she suited up.”
Rippey said, “She came out for an overnight in the fall of her senior year and loved the team – the family we had built.”
Gamache said, “I was looking at a lot of different schools for lacrosse, but I really connected with the team when I came up for my overnight. I also loved the campus.”
She added, “I am majoring in elementary education and the program here is the best around, so that also really helped my decision.”
As Framingham’s first Women’s Lacrosse’s commit for the 2016 class, Gamache has paved the road for new players and helped create a new standard for the team.
Rippey said, “There was evidence the program was headed in the right direction, and everything else fell into place.”
He added, “I always make sure to say ‘thank you’ to grandpa when I see him at our games.”
Gamache’s decision was made for more reasons than just lacrosse, and it showed that athletes have considerations that are important to them besides sports.
Sports often play a significant role in a students’ life.
Gamache said, “I think it has helped so much playing lacrosse in college, especially when it comes to academics. I am much more on top of my work. I learned that time management is super important, and I felt that it has really kept me in line. I have [also] met some of my best friends through this team, so I am so thankful for it.”
This season, Gamache has 34 goals and 41 assists – a total of 75 points – in just 16 games.
She has a 50.7 shooting percentage, meaning she scores on half the shots she takes.
She has also won MASCAC Player of the Week twice this season, and, more often than not, has been directly involved in a game-winning play.
Rippey said, “Grace has a high lax IQ. She’s very cerebral and understands how the pieces need to fit together on the field.”
He added, “[She’s] a fierce competitor and certainly a player that wants the ball when the game is on the line.”
With everything that Gamache has accomplished this season and in previous seasons, she has helped to make Framingham Women’s Lacrosse into a dominant team.
Gamache said, “It has been the best three years. I couldn’t imagine playing anywhere else. The team chemistry is great – we all get along so well.”
She added, “The program has come so far in the past couple of years, and I’ve been so lucky to be a part of it.”
With only one game left in the regular season, Gamache and the Rams are getting ready for the MASCAC Playoffs.
Since they hold the top seed, the playoffs will run through Framingham, the homefield of the all-time points leader.