34°F & Clear 7 day forecast Saturday, December 20, 2014

Grand Valley State University's Beacon Since 1963, Allendale, MI
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Niece of former baseball coach sparks GV lax

Laker Nation. It’s an interesting concept. Tucked away in an almost-rural town in West Michigan, Grand Valley State University is home to more than 24,000 students. Most of these residents hail from Michigan, while some make the short trip in from the Chicago suburbs. But GVSU’s reach stretches all over the nation, holding surprising connections from the eastern seaboard all the way to the shining shores of the West Coast.

Just ask Kira Dosenberry. It was for those connections that she chose to leave the 80-degree Elysium that is San Diego, Calif., to play lacrosse for Alicia Groveston in “little Antarctica” or, as some call it, Allendale.

“I’ve never experienced anything like this (winter) before,” Dosenberry said. “I’d be sad looking at my friend’s Instagram and Facebook pictures.

“It’s been hard, but being busy has helped a ton.”

Then why did Dosenberry choose to come to an NCAA Division II school about 2,200 miles away from her hometown in Southern California? You’ll have to go back to 1985 to find the answer.

After going through two coaches in two years, the GVSU baseball program settled on a man named Andy Chopp for the job. Chopp filled the position admirably, amassing 365 wins in 14 seasons at the helm. Although he left in 1998, his legacy lives on in Laker Blue in 2014 in the form of his niece, Dosenberry.

While carving her own way in GVSU’s newest varsity sport, the freshman midfielder has given opponents a full list of to-dos if they want to keep her in check. Despite only starting in two of the Lakers’ 10 games this season, she has managed to accumulate nine points, seven of which are goals.

Her accuracy stands out, as Dosenberry has managed to put 14 of her 17 shot attempts on goal, leading anyone to believe that her numbers will continue to accumulate – and perhaps skyrocket – throughout this season and into the years ahead.

“She’s incredibly good at hustling and placing her shots,” said roommate and fellow freshman standout Ryan Skomial. “When she gets the opportunity to shoot, she generally takes advantage of it, and, if she does miss, she hustles to get back on defense.”

Dosenberry and Skomial both made their offensive presence felt in the team’s first home game of the season on March 31, as both rookies chipped in with a hat trick.

However, were it not for her own ambition, Dosenberry might not be a Laker today. In high school, her talent was enough to merit considerations from the University of Michigan along with Division II powerhouse Rollins College.

“She’s a steal, to be perfectly honest,” Groveston said. “She fell through the cracks. She’s super athletic, aggressive, and willing to do the dirty work.”

Anyone that comes in contact with Dosenberry in her lacrosse element will likely reflect Groveston’s observation. She has quickly made an impact with her new team by displaying a work ethic that stands out, perhaps even more so than her natural skill.

While no one can predict what Dosenberry will do in the future, one thing is sure: Laker Nation is happy to have her.

GVSU returns to the pitch this weekend in its first of three home games against Alderson-Broaddus University on Friday at 7 p.m.



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