Bulldogs Add Four in Class of 2015

Pam Stuper. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Pam Stuper. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Accurso, Kirkham, McInerney and Schlesier Added to Roster

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale field hockey team welcomes four incoming freshmen to the roster for the 2011 season, including two forwards, one back and one goalkeeper. The group features three players with experience in USA Field Hockey programs and one who was on the Canadian Junior National Field Hockey Team Training Squad.

The incoming class joins a group of returnees that has seen much success under Pam Stuper, who enters her seventh season as head coach. Yale has won 23 games over the past two seasons, tied for the second-best two-year span in school history (the team won 24 games in 2002-2003). The Bulldogs have increased their season goal total for five straight years, and last year's total (52) tied for second all-time (the 1998 team scored 55). With 13 letterwinners returning from last year's team, including nine players who made seven or more starts, the Bulldogs have the pieces in place to keep their winning ways going with the addition of the four newcomers.

Here is a look at the newest Bulldogs:


Jessie Accurso
Jamison, Pa./Central Bucks South

High School: PIAA Class AAA All-State Honorable Mention 2010 … National Field Hockey Coaches Association All- Academic Team … Courier-Kiwanis Scholar- Athlete Award and Scholarship recipient … Coaches Award for Best Work Ethic … Team was Suburban One League Champions in 2009 and 2010, District One Champions in 2009, PIAA Class AAA State Semifinalists in 2009, State playoff participant in 2010 … Captain of Indoor and Spring track teams 2010-2011 ... Track team MVP … 4x100 Meter Relay District One AAA Qualifier 2010 and 2011 and 2011 Suburban One Continental Conference  Second Team All-League … Set school records in 55, 100 and 200 meter dashes in 2010 and 2011 … Member of school record-setting 4x100 and 4x200 meter relay teams.

Club team: Played for FSC … Went to National Hockey Festival 2008, 2009 and 2010 … National indoor tournament participant 2011.

USA Field Hockey: Futures participant … played at U19 regional tournament 2009 and 2010.

Notes: Member National Honor Society, National Spanish Honor Society … Pennsylvania Representative at Lead America Congressional Student Leadership Conference … District representative at Keystone Girls State, elected mayor … Junior American Legion Auxiliary Member … Hobbies include surfing, snowboarding and biking.

Why Yale? "Yale's combination of competitive athletics and extraordinary academics coupled with its friendly and welcoming student body and campus community is everything I've always wanted in a college."



Megan Kirkham
Courtice, Ont./Courtice Secondary School

High School: Played varsity field hockey, ice hockey and rugby all four years of high school, and also played varsity ultimate Frisbee in ninth grade … In senior year was named MVP for field hockey, MVP for ice hockey and MVP for rugby … Won school's Senior Female Athlete of the Year Award … Won Junior Female Athlete of the Year Award in ninth and 10th grades … Captained field hockey and rugby teams in 11th and 12th grades … Assistant captain of ice hockey team in 10th and 11th grades, captain in 12th grade … Four-time field hockey team MVP … Leading scorer grades 9 through 11 … Won rugby team's Outstanding Leadership Award in 11th grade … Won Regional Championships in ice hockey and rugby in grades 10 through 12.

Club teams: Member of the Toronto Titans Field Hockey Club 2009-2011 … Titans finished in second place in Toronto senior Women's League in 2010 … Also played ice hockey for the Durham West Junior Lightning in the Provincial Women's Hockey League 2010-11 … Assistant captain, season goals and scoring leader on Durham West Lightning Midget AA ice hockey team 2009-2010.

Field Hockey Canada:  Member of the Canadian Junior National Field Hockey Team Training Squad 2010 … Member of the U18 Provincial Field Hockey team 2010 (Team Ontario U18, first place at the 2010 Canada Cup) … Member of the U16 Provincial Field Hockey team 2009 (Team Ontario U16, second place at 2009 National Championships).

Notes: National Lifeguard Service Certification and Water Safety Instructor Certification in Swimming … 60 hours of community service as an assistant soccer coach, and at the local hospital in the fracture clinic … Volunteered for 200 hours as a physical therapist assistant at a school for children with special needs … Ice hockey referee for the local minor hockey association

Why Yale? "I decided that Yale was the right fit for me because of how diverse the community is and how friendly everyone was whenever I visited the campus. I also really liked the residential college system and how you have a smaller community within the larger college."





Grace McInerney
Blue Bell, Pa./William Penn Charter

High School: In addition to field hockey, played basketball and was on track and field team … Captained field hockey and track and field teams … Eight varsity letters … A leading scorer on the field hockey team since sophomore season ... 2010 field hockey team beat Germantown Academy at PC/GA Day (the oldest high school rivalry in the country) for the first time in nine years ... Inter Ac Girls' Track and Field Champions 2008 and 2010 … 2008 Track and Field Coaches' Award.  

Club teams: Played for FSC Club Team (festival and indoor teams) and We-R-One Club Team (indoor team).

USA Field Hockey: Futures participant 2009, 2010.

Notes: National Merit Finalist... S. Weir Lewis 3rd Memorial Prize to an outstanding junior in English... The Robert C. Porter Bowdoin Prize to a member of the sophomore class with highest leadership in academics & contribution to school life...Cum Laude Society … Editor-In-Chief for The Mirror, the oldest student newspaper in the United States … Church lector …Children's liturgy leader … Girls' a cappella … American Red Cross volunteer …Children's Hospital of Philadelphia volunteer … Writing center peer tutor … Daughter of John and Susan McInerney ... Brother Michael is a senior offensive lineman for Yale football team ... Father was first-team All-Ivy League offensive tackle for Penn's 1982 Ivy League championship football team... Brother Robert played offensive line at Carnegie Mellon, graduated in 2011... Member of Branford College.

Why Yale? "I looked for a college at which I would feel the happiest. Yale provided me with a feeling that I did not receive from any other school: a sense of family, knowledge, curiosity and an excellent quality of life." 





Heather Schlesier
San Diego, Calif./Torrey Pines

High School: Goalkeeper for field hockey, lacrosse and soccer teams … First Team All North County 2010, 2009 … First Team All CIF 2010 … First Team Avocado league 2010 … North County Times Athlete of the Week Oct. 20, 2009 … All Academic Team 2011, 2010, 2009 … Team was CIF finalist 2010, League Champions 2010, 2009 … Soccer team was Southern California State Champions and CIF Champions 2011, League Champions 2011, 2010.

Club Team: Played for Rush …  Festival Pool C Champions 2009 … Cal Cup Champions 2010, 2009 … NIT Pool Champions 2010 …  North County Indoor League Champions 2011.

USA Field Hockey: Futures U19 Regional Team 2011.

Notes: National Honor Society member … Sister Ashlee is the starting goalkeeper for University of the Pacific field hockey team … Hobbies included scuba diving, watching and playing sports, anything that involves intermingling with family and friends.

Why Yale? "I chose Yale for a new adventure on the East coast with a great team, and I am excited for the academic challenge that Yale provides.  Go Bulldogs!"


Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity