Hailey Russell: The Work is Worth it

The U. of Oregon lacrosse commit talks sports, friendships, and hard work


Hailey Russell posing for the camera on Spring Sports Media Day with PennLive on March 9th,2023. The three junior starters took a trip to CV High for their special shoot. (Penn Live/Sean Simmers)

Starting as an inexperienced 4th grader who played lacrosse as an escape from life, she is now a passionate player for the sport and going to play at a D1 college. 

Hershey High junior, Hailey Russell, committed to the University of Oregon this past fall.

Russell is a very involved student athlete. She is the next Vice President of Hershey Key Club, a member of both NHS and Math NHS, and takes a mix of various honor and AP classes.

“Lacrosse has helped me so much in life. It gives me an escape from life and gives me so much joy to play. It also has given me so many friendships with people that I wouldn’t have gotten without lacrosse,” said Russell.

This D1 recruit never truly thought she would go this far in her lacrosse career.

In the beginning of the summer of her sophomore year she started the college recruiting process. Even though she could not talk directly to coaches till September 1st, she was able to narrow down her decision and communicate with certain schools after that date.

Russell’s top five colleges to attend for lacrosse were: University of Oregon, Monmouth University, University of Richmond, University of Rhode Island, and St. Joe’s.

She describes the main goal breaker of picking Oregon was due to her visit.

 “The campus was beautiful, their athletic facilities were amazing and the students and lacrosse team were so nice and welcoming,” said Russell.

When she went on her visit across the country, she met potential teammates and described them as the nicest people ever.

Even though she never thought of playing thousands of miles away, Russell is 100% committed to the University of Oregon.

Russell has been a star contributor to the Hershey Girls Lacrosse team since her freshman season. So far, they are 11-0, and hoping to play again in the Mid Penn Championship for the 3rd straight year. 

While she is still only a junior at HHS, she has big goals before the end of her senior year. She hopes to reach 100 high school career goals, and to be a high school All American as a senior.