Foxcroft School’s Alex Grace, a speedy goal-scoring midfielder and two-time state tournament Player of the Year, signed a letter of intent Wednesday (Nov. 11) to play lacrosse at the University of Virginia next year.
The senior from Purcellville has led Foxcroft to consecutive Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division II championships. In three years at Foxcroft, she has scored 218 goals and collected 36 assists for 254 career points. She holds school records for most goals in a season (92) and most ground balls in a game (10), a season (82) and a career (215).
Grace caught the eye of Virginia coaches during her freshman year — just two years after she started playing lacrosse – and received a verbal commitment in the summer of 2013. Virginia made it official with the letter that Grace signed at an all-school assembly in Currier Library, with Grace’s parents, Jim and Jennifer, siblings Matt, Kevin and Ambrose, and Foxcroft lacrosse coaches Patrick Finn and Michelle Woodruff looking on.
“While her stats and achievements depict an accomplished high school lacrosse player and athlete,” said Finn, who also played lacrosse at UVA, “it is her hustle, determination and ‘never give up’ spirit that set her apart from her peers.”
“We have had the pleasure of watching Alex grow and mature as a student and as a lacrosse player,” said Woodruff, Foxcroft’s Athletic Director as well as lacrosse and field hockey coach. “Today is the culmination of Alex’s hard work and of the support, guidance and commitment of a great many other people – her coaches, teachers, teammates and most of all her family. We are all so proud of her.”
A fine all-around athlete who has also achieved VISAA All-State honors in cross country and field hockey and was named Delaney Athletic Conference Player of the Year in Basketball last season, Grace demonstrated her lacrosse skills as a freshman when she scored 56 goals and added seven assists in helping Foxcroft to the finals of the state tournament. She was named to the All-State team for her performance.
Grace was even better her sophomore year, setting the school single-season record of 92 goals and adding 16 assists as Foxcroft posted a perfect 17-0 record and won its first ever VISAA Division 2 championship. She was named Player of the Year in the state tournament.
In 2015, Foxcroft repeated as state champion with Grace contributing 70 goals and 13 assists. Her most dramatic goal came in the final of the state tournament against Highland School when she intercepted a pass, raced the length of the field and scored with four seconds left to give Foxcroft a 9-8 victory and its second straight title. In the previous day’s semifinal, Grace also scored with seconds remaining to lift Foxcroft. Again, she was Player of the Year.
Grace needs 20 goals next spring to break the school record for most career goals. Emma Rogers, who graduated last spring and now plays for Radford University, holds the record of 237 goals set from 2012-15.
Grace is the second Foxcroft player to sign a letter-of-intent at a National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I college in recent years. Meredith “Dish” Harris of Middleburg signed with the University of Denver in 2009 and went on to become an all-league player and participate in the NCAA tournament. Many other Foxcroft graduates have played in college as well.
The National Letter of Intent (NLI) is a document used to indicate a student athlete’s commitment to participating at NCAA colleges and universities in the United States. The NCAA Eligibility Center manages the daily operations of the NLI program while the Collegiate Commissioners Association (CCA) provides governance oversight of the program. Started in 1964 with seven conferences and eight independent institutions, the program now includes 676 Division I and II participating institutions. There are designated dates for different sports, and these dates are commonly referred to as “Signing Day”.