Captain Shea Freda ’24: Bridging Boundaries at Andover

A bridge between upperclassmen and younger players, Shea Freda ’24 dawns her captain’s armband as a testament to a legacy rooted in hard work, mentorship, and a passion for the sport.

Freda traced her love of sports back to the relentless spirits of her parents, both coaches and first-generation college students. Freda reflected being raised in a household that valued sportsmanship and leadership. 

“It’s in my blood. Since I was three-years-old, I was watching my mom coach state championships in high school sports. So I’ve always been super excited to get into that and experience that for myself,” Freda said.

Freda’s leadership isn’t about bravado — she tries to connect with her teammates not only as players, but as friends. 

“We always talk about how we want to break boundaries between grades. One way I do that is [that] I want to become friends with everyone. I try to really connect with the [Juniors] and connect with the [Lowers], not just on a ‘we’re teammates’ level, but I want to get to know you as a friend and connect with you and have conversation. I feel like that’s a big part of my leadership, in that I want to be super approachable and [be] a friend, not just a captain,” said Freda. 

Quiana Bell ’26 recounted her first interaction with Freda during tryouts, where Freda welcomed Bell with warmth and helped quell her initial nerves. Freda has consistently maintained an intimate relationship with her teammates. 

“I was so nervous about starting at a new school and especially nervous about tryouts. She came right up to me and said ‘Hii, you’re Q, right? I’m Shea.’ I instantly felt more at ease… She always held a perfect balance of friend, teammate, and captain. [She] carries so much heart and passion into every single thing she does. I look up to her as a person, mentor and teammate,” said Bell.

Assistant Coach Taylor Ware commented that Freda’s leadership stems from her athletic versatility — she is a varsity-level athlete at Andover in field hockey, ice hockey, and lacrosse. With her remarkable ability to bridge divides, backed by a deep-seated commitment to her sport and her teammates, Freda will continue to inspire and lead this year.

“In some teams, she’s a star, while in ice hockey, she may not get the minutes she desires. Yet this variance, this ability to understand and adapt, makes her more accessible. It amplifies her connection with her teammates, making them feel truly understood,” said Coach Taylor Ware.

Echoing the importance of Freda’s captaincy, Head Coach Kate Dolan notes that Freda maintains a firm commitment to creating a supportive team environment. 

“Shea leads naturally. She has a deep sense of empathy…[and] steps up not to overshadow others but to uplift them,” said Dolan

While Freda’s empathetic leadership style is one element that sets her apart, her prowess on the field is equally undeniable, according to Neily Ware ’25.

Ware said, “She’s very competitive. She always wants to win and puts everything out on the field. We love the fire and energy she brings and [how she] puts that into everybody and makes everybody really intense and competitive and want to win as well.”

Freda will continue her athletic and academic career at Boston University.