Skip to main content
Emma Lopinto

Eagle Eye: Transfers Clark and LoPinto Further Bolster Boston College

September 12, 2023
Beth Ann Mayer
Kelly Coughlan

This article appears in the September/October edition of USA Lacrosse Magazine. Join our momentum.

Boston College has a knack for finding top offensive talent. Two of the game’s brightest stars who did not consider BC as recruits — Rachel Clark and Emma LoPinto — will be in Chestnut Hill for the 2024 season.

Clark is transferring from Virginia on the heels of head coach Julie Myers’ decision to step down and become CEO of the One Love Foundation.

“A big reason I went to Virginia in the first place was to play for Coach Myers,” said Clark, who scored 127 goals in two seasons at UVA and was the 2022 ACC Freshman of the Year. “She was a great coach and an even better person. I was really loyal to her. Her leaving is what prompted me leaving. I wanted to play for another coach with a winning history. [Acacia Walker-Weinstein] has built a successful program at BC and has a great connection with her players. She’s almost a motherly figure to them.”

Success isn’t optional at BC, where the Eagles have advanced to six straight national championship games, winning it all in 2021. Clark also watched as the Eagles claimed their first ACC tournament title this season.

LoPinto knows a thing or two about winning conference tournaments — she won a pair of AAC titles at Florida, where she tallied 125 goals in two seasons. But she’s hungry for more.

“I wanted something a little closer to home (Manhasset, N.Y.) and better academically,” LoPinto said. “I wanted to be in a conference where every game is with a top-10 team in the country.”

Boston College’s penchant for being busy until the season’s final day attracted LoPinto. But she wanted to be sure her next move was for good. She phoned a friend. Three, actually.

“I have a few friends on BC,” LoPinto said. “I hopped on a call with Shea Dolce, who I know from playing USA. I know Belle [Smith] and Hunter Roman. When I was in the portal, I was like, ‘Give me everything you got on what you love and what you don’t.’ They were super honest and open. They said something big was the culture and how much they love each other.”

LoPinto liked Walker-Weinstein’s low-pressure approach to their conversations when she was in the transfer portal, which felt like a bigger whirlwind than her junior year in high school. (LoPinto was No. 4 and Clark was No. 10 — both five-star prospects — in Inside Lacrosse’s Class of 2021 high school recruit rankings).

“She was really warm and loving,” LoPinto said. “She wanted to make everything right.”

Clark and LoPinto’s paths have converged a few times. They were Under Armour All-Americans and are STX athletes. Both were part of the USA Lacrosse National Team Development Program, with LoPinto advancing over the summer to the 42-player U20 training team roster.

Neither discussed the schools they had in mind.

“She’s a dynamic attacker, especially around the crease,” Clark said. “She can go to goal, feed. She’s a super-versatile player who can score a lot of goals.”

“She’s an incredible player,” LoPinto said of Clark. “It’s come back full circle now that she’s going to BC. I am excited to be able to play with her.”

Clark and LoPinto aren’t the first high-profile offensive transfers to make their way to Boston College. Need we mention Charlotte North?

The situation is different, though. North came from Duke to help fill the void left by the Big 3: Sam Apuzzo, Kenzie Kent and Dempsey Arsenault —  the trio that set in motion BC’s run to six straight NCAA finals. Almost casually, she became a two-time Tewaaraton Award winner, NCAA record setter and lacrosse icon.

Neither Clark nor LoPinto will be asked to carry the load the way North did, but Clark is embracing the challenge of both standing out and fitting in on a team loaded with veterans.

“Being surrounded by so many great players is going to push me to be better,” Clark said. “I learned that playing for the U.S., you have to earn your jersey every single day. That’s the mindset I am going to bring to BC.”