Bainbridge High’s Sallie Marx to play NCAA D3 lacrosse at Pomona-Pitzer

BAINBRIDGE, Wash. – Bainbridge High School senior Sallie Marx has committed to play NCAA Division III lacrosse at Pomona-Pitzer Colleges in Claremont, Calif.


Bainbridge High School senior Sallie Marx signs a commitment letter Thursday, to play NCAA Div. III lacrosse at Pomona-Pitzer Colleges in California. (Photo: Marx Family)

Marx, a goal-oriented, driven student-athlete, signed a commitment letter to play for Pomona-Pitzer on Thursday after receiving a formal acceptance letter to the academically rigorous Pomona College earlier in the week.

“It doesn’t seem real yet.  It’s still sinking in,” said Marx who is as stellar on the lacrosse field and classroom as she is in finding opportunities to give back.

An All-State selection in 2013 for the Spartans, Marx will join a Sarah Queener coached Pomona-Pitzer team next fall that finished 10-9 in 2013 after advancing to the semifinals of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

“(Coach Queener) is passionate about the game and cares a lot about her players,” said Marx.  “She wants to see them succeed on and off the field.  That’s something that I’m looking forward to.”

And Marx is also looking forward to becoming reacquainted with a number of graduates that she competed with and against as a prep.

Local products on the Sagehens roster are 2013 and 2012 Lakeside School graduates Rebecca Long and Makayla DeJong along with 2011 Garfield graduate Zoe Brown.  The three are all expected to take the field when the Sagehens visit the University of Puget Sound in an NCAA D3 matchup on Sunday, March 2 in Tacoma.  The game gets underway at 10 a.m. on Lower Baker Field on the UPS campus.

While hard work and determination helped Marx earn an NCAA offer, its toughness and passion that have helped her with other battles and a drive to help others.

On the lacrosse field, Marx, who also played soccer and basketball through her freshman year, finished the 2013 prep season as the Spartans leading goal scorer with 38 and second in points with 44.  Her success helped guide the powerhouse Spartans to the semifinals of the Washington Lacrosse Girls State Tournament last spring.

But off the field, while maintaining a 3.98 GPA with AP coursework in statistics, calculus, biology, along with honors humanities, and global citizenship, Marx also sets herself apart with a desire to make a difference in her own life – and the lives of others.

Diagnosed at 13 with Ankylosing Spondylitis, a chronic arthritis-like condition causing her joints to become swollen and painful, Marx has not just set out to overcome the discomfort but to put her talents to work to fund research that she hopes will cure a disease that affects some 1.1 million adults and adolescents.

Senior project presentation by Bainbridge
High School senior Sallie Marx.  

When I was first diagnosed I didn’t want anything to do with it.  I didn’t want it to be public with any of my friends,” said Marx.

After volunteering at a summer camp with kids dealing with arthritic conditions she was inspired and realized her talents could have an impact.

“When I saw young people dealing with it I realized that there was more that I could do,” she said.   “I just want to make a difference and impact as many lives as I can and do something that wasn’t thought of,” said Marx who channeled her passions around her senior project at Bainbridge High.

“Nothing too big, just something usual,” she said.

Wrapping her athletic goals around fighting the pestering disease, Marx set out to train for last fall’s Austin 70.3 Ironman and encourage others to join in by backing her with donations.

Combining running, a part of lacrosse training, enlisting the help of family friend and local swim coach Megan Hawgood to perfect her stroke at the nearby Bainbridge Aquatic Center, and cycling with her father Josh, a veteran of Bainbridge Island’s “Chilly Hilly”, RAMROD and other challenging Northwest rides, she felt ready.


Bainbridge High School senior Sallie Marx (left) drives past Glacier-Peak High School’s Kyrie Moos-Howick during a 2013 Washington state high school lacrosse game. (Photo: Michael Jardine)

The youngest of the Texas event’s 2,400 competitors, Marx completed the grueling 70.3-mile swim, bike, run, in 6 hours, 46 minutes — 14 minutes ahead of her 7-hour goal.

And when the donations and matching funds were tallied she had raised over $19,400 to fight the disease.

“Whenever I start out with a project I set a goal,” said Marx who draws inspiration from her parents, both Peach Corps volunteers as young adults.

“I’m shocked at how someone my age can make a difference,” she said.  “It’s more about what I’m doing to make a difference than the money that comes out of it.”

To learn more about student-athletes from Washington state high schools committing to NCAA and NAIA lacrosse programs during the 2013-14 academic year, visit: 2013-14 Washington State NCAA Lacrosse Commitments.

About Lacrosse in Washington State
Lacrosse has over 100 years of history in Washington state with clubs playing in the early 1900s and high schools now in their fourth decade of state competition.  With Native American origins, lacrosse is one of the oldest organized sports on the continent and today is considered the fastest growing sport in America.  In Washington state, some 4,000 student-athletes attending over 200 high schools play prep lacrosse, while another 6,000 play lacrosse at the youth, adult and collegiate club levels throughout the state.  For more information on high school lacrosse in Washington state visit

~ Mike McQuaid, Sports Information Director, US Lacrosse – Washington State Chapter

This version corrects an earlier version of the story.

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