With 17 goals and two assists, freshman attacker Keeley Block leads the team in goals scored, and is only behind senior captain Niki Miles in points. It's been an incredible start for the rookie who has already made an immense impact on the team. But off the field, she values the relationships that help her grow into the best version of herself as both a student and an athlete. We sat down with Block and asked her 15 questions about her sport, career, and her life at Penn so far.
1. Hi Keeley, could you briefly introduce yourself?
My name is Keeley Block, I’m a student-athlete here at the University of Pennsylvania. I am a freshman attacker on the lacrosse team.
2. How did you start playing lacrosse?
Both of my parents were collegiate athletes. They went to Salisbury University. My dad played lacrosse in college, so that’s how I got into it.
3. Has your dad been a big part of your lacrosse career?
Absolutely. He was actually one of my club coaches growing up, so he taught me basically everything I need to know about the sport.
4. What’s your favorite memory so far of playing lacrosse?
I would say all the relationships that lacrosse has brought me. My club team was super close, so having that family behind you — not only as a team, but [also] out of lacrosse — was something that I really cherished.
5. Speaking of relationships, how has it been adjusting to a new team?
We’re one huge family. I think the seniors did a great job of welcoming us. I know it can be hard sometimes as seniors to welcome another class. So I think the upperclassmen did such a great job [of] making us feel at home in the lacrosse team.
6. How have the upperclassmen been helpful in showing you the ropes of Penn and the team?
One person that comes to mind is Taylyn Stadler. She’s a senior attacker. She’s insane. She was on the Tewaaraton Watch List. She is one of my biggest role models on the team. She’s helped me throughout the entire season, getting better, telling me what I need to work on. She’s just one of the many.
7. You’ve been getting incredible minutes as a freshman, and you're one of the leaders in goals scored. What has it been like coming in your first season and getting to make those big impact plays?
It’s been great, I’m really thankful for the trust the coaches put in me — my teammates as well. I just go out there and try to make the most of my time on the field. It’s a lot of fun.
8. What is the most exciting thing about playing lacrosse?
The most exciting thing would be the little things. Here at Penn, we have our pregame traditions. We sing together, we dance. All those little things make lacrosse so much more enjoyable. The relationships, the little things in life.
9. You say before every game, the team listens to songs. What’s your favorite song to listen to before a game?
That’s a hard one. My favorite song to listen to before a game … I don’t think I have [one]. Anything by Tee Grizzley. He gets me pumped up.
10. Outside of lacrosse, what do you like to do for fun?
I loved to play field hockey in high school, something I sadly can’t do anymore. That was another sport that I really loved to play, so I think that would be something fun besides lacrosse that I love to do.
11. You played lacrosse and field hockey? Did you play any other sports?
The only other sport I did was track in high school.
12. What’s the biggest difference you’ve found between living in Maryland and being here in Philly?
There [are] some big ones. So I’m from Eastern Shore Maryland, which is very country and farm with the beach, so I’m not very used to the city life. But the city life is so much fun. There’s never a boring moment here. I love it.
13. What’s your favorite Philly outing that you’ve done so far — whether it be an activity or a restaurant you really liked?
We had a team Father-Daughter Bowling Night. I’m not sure what the bowling alley was called, but we all went and it was so much fun.
14. How was it having your dad with you, in the moment you finally made it onto a college lacrosse team, especially after the impact he had on your lacrosse career?
It’s such an experience. I just want to make him proud with every game I play, with every play I make. So it’s awesome to see the results of all the years of hard work that I put into lacrosse and that he’s put into me. So just enjoying those games [is] really special to me.
15. What is something else that you’re really grateful for in life?
I’m so grateful for the opportunity I have to be here. I know that I’m living some girl’s dream out there, so being able to live that out to my biggest capability is crazy to me. And I’m so grateful to be at one of the best colleges in the world.