Top female goalie Devon Wills will get chance to make Lizards
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Devon Wills often wondered what it would be like to try and stop shots in a Major League Lacrosse game against some of the world's best male players.
Now Wills will get that chance after the New York Lizards picked her from the player pool after the completion of the supplemental draft.
A top goalie in the women's game, Wills has a litany of accomplishments. She was a three-time NCAA All-American honoree at Dartmouth from 2004-06 and she helped Team USA win gold medals in 2009 and 2013 in the women's World Cup.
"I think this is going to be hard and going to be a challenge but I've been in sports long enough to know you'll either meet or give in to a challenge," said Wills, currently an assistant coach at the University of Southern California. "I'll just draw on past experiences where I thought I couldn't do something or where I've been faced with a challenge and I need to find a way to get it done."
The idea of trying out for a men's team didn't take shape until Lizards coach Joe Spallina planted the idea. "He actually asked me if I thought it was even possible and then he started pushing buttons," Wills said. "He'd say, 'I'd love to see you in a uniform or get you out to practice.' He'd make one-liner comments and when I said 'let's do it,' he was all aboard."
Spallina also is involved in the women's game -- he doubles as the women's lacrosse coach at Stony Brook University -- which made Wills even more comfortable about trying out. She'll have her chance to make the team when the Lizards convene training camp in April.
"I trust his opinion a lot," Wills said. "This is his decision and his judgment call [whether I make the team] and I have complete trust. If he says I'm not good enough, then I'm not, and if he says I am, then great."