Goalkeeper Lauren Walker '09 Will Continue Soccer Career After Graduation
Goalkeeper Lauren Walker '09 Will
Continue Soccer Career After Graduation
by Kyle Leach
Lauren Walker '09
Goalkeeper Lauren Walker '09, a psychobiology major from Fallston, Md., will continue her soccer career this spring, having been picked up by the AC Diablos of the Women's Premier Soccer League (WPSL) this past week. Walker learned of the Diablos' interest from head coach Matt Driver, also head coach of the Philadelphia Independence, the newest Women's Professional Soccer franchise set to begin play in 2010.
"[Swarthmore head] coach [Todd] Anckaitis called me last week about the Diablos' interest, right in the middle of my final exams," said Walker. "I had a short conversation with Coach Driver and found myself driving south on Saturday for our first game against TSC Maryland Pride."
Walker's first week on the Diablos, the feeder program for the Independence, coincided with the ceremony officially welcoming the Independence to Philadelphia. Held at the Franklin Institute, the Diablos, got a photo opportunity with Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.
"The last ten days have been such a whirlwind," exclaimed Walker, "from meeting all my talented teammates, to finishing school, and then standing next to the Mayor!"
Walker has been a central force in the turnaround of Swarthmore women's soccer, leading the Garnet to consecutive ECAC Championships and the Centennial Conference playoffs three straight years. Her six saves in a
4-3 win over No. 1-ranked College of New Jersey in September 2008 put Swarthmore on the national soccer map. Walker was named All-Region and received three All-Centennial selections in four years at Swarthmore, setting school records for shutouts (28) and goals-against average (0.70). The M.V.P. of the 2008 E.C.A.C. South Region Championship, Walker also holds Centennial Conference records for shutouts in a season (10) and lowest GAA in a season (0.27).