Brooke Matthews, Friends, lacrosse

Q&A --

May 02, 2007

Asenior midfielder for the Friends lacrosse team that went into last weekend undefeated in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland B Conference, Brooke Matthews will play next year for current No. 1 Northwestern. She has a 92 academic average, but has not decided on a major. Also a soccer player at Friends, she works in the school senate and as a peer educator for fifth-graders. Her parents, Dia and Mickey Matthews, played college lacrosse. Her mother is coaching the Quakers this season for Sallie Bennett, who is on maternity leave.

When did lacrosse become your passion?

For a while, I really liked soccer and lacrosse equally. Then, in middle school, I started to like lacrosse more. It was a lot faster and I had a lot more skills. I would just tend to kick it in soccer.

Why did you decide on Northwestern?

I visited tons of schools and I just really liked Northwestern. Of course, I liked the campus, but the coach [Kelly Amonte-Hiller] was really, really nice and I just liked the team a lot. I felt like I got along with them really well and I felt like I could have good friendships with the people who were on the team. I felt they were similar to me and had my same interests.

As a peer counselor, how can you have an effect on fifth-graders?

I remember when the peer educators came and talked to me. I don't exactly remember what they said, but I remember having -- not really a friendship with them, because they were much older -- but having someone to look up to and having someone who's closer to my age than a teacher giving me advice, so I believed them more.

What do you talk to them about mostly?

We try to help them with bullying, friendships, transition to middle school, issues like that. I really like working with kids.

How much have your parents influenced you athletically, with your mom having played lacrosse at Richmond and your dad at Brown?

Ever since I was little, my parents have always coached my teams. My dad coached my soccer team until I was like 10 and my mom always coached my rec lacrosse team. They've never forced me to do it, always supported me in whatever sport I wanted to play. They still, to this day, play with me on weekends. I live on the Gilman campus, so we just go out and shoot. My dad'll feed me, so that's nice.

What's it like having your mom for a coach in high school?

It's interesting. Everyone's like, "That must be nice," and I'm like, "Not really." She's harder on me than everyone else [laughs]. One game, I decided I wanted to work on my left hand, so every shot I took, I took with my left hand. Obviously, I'm not a lefty because they all missed, so my mom pulled me out of the game and started giving me a talking to ... and I was like "I was using my left hand," and then she realized. It is good because she pushes me.


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