The Franklin & Marshall scholar-athlete profile features a Diplomat who personifies what it means to be an NCAA student-athlete. The F&M campus is filled with dedicated, passionate, and talented student-athletes who have interesting stories to tell – and it's our goal to let those stories be heard. To be chosen as a scholar-athlete of the month, F&M student-athletes must demonstrate academic excellence, leadership, and community service, or have a noteworthy story that stretches beyond the realm of athletic competition.
To view previous scholar-athletes, click here.
Annie Horsley '18 was one of the senior leaders on the Franklin & Marshall College field hockey team that advanced to the NCAA Division III Final Four in 2017, and one of her greatest satisfactions was the close friendships made during her four years at the College.
"We are a family in every sense of the word. We are each other's best friends," the accomplished and affable student-athlete said. "It was rewarding enough getting to play with the people you love, so winning the Centennial Conference Championship and going to the Final Four was an added bonus."
The hard-working squad was 18-4 overall, tying a program record for wins in a season, and the first to make the Final Four since 1983. The remarkable season ended with a tough 2-1 overtime loss to eventual National Champion Middlebury College on Nov. 17.
Memories of that Final Four weekend in Louisville, Kentucky, likely will last a lifetime.
"Players from all three divisions were there the same weekend, and there was a big reception at Churchill Downs (the race track famous for the Kentucky Derby)," said Horsley. "We were surrounded by athletes from all over, and I felt nothing but pride for our team, our school, and our achievements."
Annie is a native of Pennington, N.J., and the daughter of two teachers. She is a graduate of the Pennington School, where she was an all-league player and also a member of the National Honor Society. She chose F&M for her college experience because of its high-quality academics and welcoming environment.
"I felt so comfortable when I was on campus as a high school student," recalled Annie, an environmental studies major. "That continued when I started here, and I am very thankful I came to F&M."
She eventually became an admissions guide, taking prospective students on tours of the campus.
"I learned more about the College and the community," she said. "And I have enjoyed sharing my experiences with prospective students and their families."
The energetic Diplomat was also active in the Student-Athlete Leadership Council, on which she was a member of its executive board for the past three years. In the first year, she served as secretary and the final two years she was vice president.
"We help organize a variety of campus-wide activities throughout each year. The events involve many of our student-athletes and the greater Lancaster community," said Annie, was a coordinator for Track-Or-Treat, an annual activity that invites Lancaster youngsters to the Alumni Sports and Fitness Center to trick-or-treat around the track and play games with members of the F&M's athletic teams and various other organizations.
In addition, she was an officer in the Alpha Phi sorority, holding an executive position involved in chapter operations, including making sure everything ran smoothly within the organization and the management of the house.
Always active, she has even helped teach science at a local elementary school.
In 2017, the three-year starting midfielder was named to the Longstreth/NFHCA Division III and Synapse Sports All-America Third Teams.
Teammate Erin Coverdale '20 was named to the first team of both units, making the duo the 32nd and 33rd players in program history to earn All-America status, while marking the seventh consecutive season that the Diplomats have had at least one player earn the distinction.
In her final year, Annie recorded 25 points on 11 goals and three assists. She scored four game-winning goals and was the team's go-to player for penalty strokes. The versatile veteran ended her collegiate career by setting a program record for penalty strokes made at 10, and is tied for eighth in career assists with 18.
"We had an aggressive team," she said. "That resulted in penalties against opponents, and I ended up taking many of the penalty shots."
Coach Kaitlyn Eager had high praise for her dependable co-captain.
"Annie was a captain in her junior and senior years, which tells you how valuable she was. She did so much on the field and off and had a real break-out year as a senior, going 8-8 in penalty strokes and scoring the most she ever has. She handled pressure well, and it was her play that helped us win several close games at the end of the season.
"She was always ready to go out and play, not thinking about scoring but enjoying the game and helping us to win."
Annie said that plans after graduation could include environmental consulting with a non-profit organization.