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Two Sports, No Problems

From Syracuse University Broadcast Journalism | 03:53

In a world where specializing in one sport is becoming more and more common, Marisa Romeo bucks that trend. She uses her talents to play both lacrosse and basketball collegiality.


TRACK 1: Sometimes in life, you have to make choices. Marisa Romeo did just that when she chose to play Lacrosse in college instead of Basketball. It’s safe to say that decision turned out ok for her.




TRACK 2: In Romeo’s four years at Harvard, she scored more than 160 goals. She’s one of just four Crimson to tally more than 200 career points. But, if Romeo hadn’t committed to Harvard so early, she may have chosen a different sport.


ROMEO 1: Well, the recruiting process for lacrosse, at least when I was in high school, was much earlier than basketball. So girls typically committed to a school for lacrosse freshman or sophomore year.


TRACK 3: Romeo wasn’t just an average basketball player. She scored over 1,000 points for Christian Brothers Academy in De Witt, New York. Even after she committed to Harvard, she wondered if it was possible to one day play college basketball. For an inspiration, she didn’t have to look very far.


ROMEO 2: Really that’s when I knew you could do this type of thing, when Greg Paulus came back to Syracuse to play football after four years of football at Duke. So that’s what planted the seed in my mind that it would always be a possibility for me.   


TRACK 4: The N-C-A-A allows its athletes to play a fifth year of a sport different from the one they previously played. Even so, Romeo says she didn’t think about it much at Harvard.


ROMEO 3: It was always something in the back of my mind maybe, but I was just so short term focused on my upcoming lacrosse season that that’s all I could think about. Even in the winter time when we were in the offseason I was just preparing for lacrosse. I wasn’t in the gym much playing basketball thinking about post grad.  


TRACK 5: But, when the clock hit zero in the Ivy League Tournament semi-finals last year, Romeo didn’t know what to do with herself.


ROMEO 4: I couldn’t imagine not waking up every day and going to see my teammates and my coaches and the practices. So when coach Q gave me an opportunity to come her I was all over it, given the feeling I had after my last lacrosse game.


TRACK 6: That’s when her high school dream became a reality. She was offered a walk-on spot on the Syracuse women’s basketball team. Now, Romeo wears number 20 and suits up for the Orange. As you can imagine, there’s been some challenges along the way.


ROMEO 5: It’s been a lot different. Not only because it’s a different sport on a different team and all that, but really because I’m taking on a completely different role than I’ve ever had to take on before, which is more being a supportive player than being a leader on the court or on the field.


TRACK 7: As for head coach Quentin Hillsman, he says he’s been impressed with her transition


HILLSMAN 1: She’s been fantastic. It has to be a big adjustment coming to a sport, learning new technology, having to learn how to get up and down the quart in a different manner.


TRACK 8: Regardless of how much playing time she gets this season, she’s accomplished something that few are able to. She’ll go down in the Harvard Lacrosse history books, while also suiting up for her hometown hoops team. She’s always been the most competitive one in the room, so this really comes as no surprise.


ROMEO 6: I played literally every sport growing up. I did swim team in the summer, I played soccer all through high school, so I played soccer for like 13 years. Basketball and lacrosse I always played, I was a big softball slash baseball playing growing up too. I had to choose between soccer and lacrosse, and I chose lacrosse.


TRACK 9: When Romeo’s collegiate eligibility runs out this year, she’ll be just fine. Besides, she’s picked up one of the most prestigious degrees in the country along the way. But, don’t think she’s going to let the real world get in the way of her true passion


ROMEO 7: All I know is next summer, when the professional lacrosse league picks up again, I will be doing that.


TRACK 10: Regardless of how her professional lacrosse career ends up, Romeo’s already proved to the world she’s not a one sport wonder. These days, not many athletes can actually say that. As for her professional lacrosse goals, one thing is for certain: no one will question her love for athletics.


-I’m Jonathon Hoppe