College's first NCAA National Championship team to receive formal NE-10 Hall of Fame Induction during halftime of Saturday's women's basketball game vs. Saint Rose
EASTON, Mass. (January 29, 2015) – Stonehill College's 2003 NCAA Division II National Championship women's lacrosse team will be formally recognized as a member of the Northeast-10 Conference's most recent Hall of Fame Class during halftime of Saturday's women's basketball game against The College of Saint Rose as part of Alumni Day at the College.
The 2003 National Champions were announced as a member of the NE-10's 2014 Hall of Fame class last June during the Conference's annual awards banquet at the league's end of the year meetings. Athletic Departments then have the opportunity to formally recognize their Conference Hall of Fame inductees during an on-campus ceremony over the course of the next academic year. The Stonehill men's and women's basketball teams are hosting Saint Rose for a Northeast-10 doubleheader on Saturday as the College conducts its Alumni Day. The women's game tips off at 1:30 p.m., with the women's lacrosse recognition at halftime, and the men's game to follow at 3:30 p.m. Admission to Stonehill basketball games is $8.00 for adults and $5.00 for senior citizens and high school and college students, with children younger admitted free of charge.
"We are looking forward to welcoming back members of the 2003 NCAA National Champion women's lacrosse program to campus as part of Alumni Day here at Stonehill on Saturday," said Cindy MacDonald, Interim Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at the College. "The 2003 season was a historic season for both the lacrosse program and the College with our first NCAA Championship and we continue to remember with great pride and admiration the team's accomplishments. This honor is another deserving accolade for a great collection of student-athletes and coaches."
Stonehill's 2003 women's lacrosse team captured the College's first NCAA Division II national championship, and just the third in Northeast-10 history, when it posted a 9-8 victory over Longwood (Va.) University to cap a 17-2 season, which included a perfect 9-0 mark in Northeast-10 play. The team quickly put a pair of season-opening losses in the rear view mirror on its way to a fifth-straight Northeast-10 regular season championship before rolling to an 18-2 triumph over Bryant University for its fourth-straight NE-10 Tournament title.
Senior Katie (Lambert) Conover, '03, currently head coach of the women's lacrosse program at Stonehill, earned Northeast-10 Player of the Year honors for the third-straight year to headline a lists of nine All-Conference selections for the team in 2003. Michael Daly, currently the head coach at Merrimack College, was named the NE-10 Coach of the Year, while Erin Acone, '06, was named the Conference's Freshman of the Year. Five members of the team earned All-America honors from the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA), including Conover, who became the first student-athlete in program history to collect first team All-America honors all four years. She was joined on the first team by Acone and Carissa Medeiros, '03, who now serves as head women's lacrosse coach at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.
Stonehill was named host of the 2003 NCAA Division II Championships and used that home field advantage to notch a pair of one goal victories to claim the national championship. Stonehill defeated LIU-Post (14-13) behind six goals from Acone in the semifinal round before All-American Colby Confer, '05, scored the deciding goal with just 11-seconds remaining to lift Stonehill past Longwood in the final. The 2003 team was inducted into the Stonehill Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011, which also includes Conover (inducted in 2008), Acone (2013) and Lauren Stone, '06 (2010). Ginny McCauley, '00, an assistant coach in 2003, is also a member of the Stonehill Athletics Hall of Fame (2006).
Michael Daley, Head Coach
Katelyn Leonard, Assistant Coach
Ginny McCauley, Assistant Coach
Corinne Stevenson, Manager
* - captains
The 2003 women's lacrosse program is Stonehill's ninth member of the NE-10 Hall of Fame, joining Conover, who was inducted individually in 2010. Stonehill's other NE-10 Hall of Famers are: Tom Folliard (founding father), Michelle (Doonan) Marinucci, '95 (women's basketball), Robert Reitz, '83 (men's basketball), Paula Sullivan (women's basketball coach), Mary Naughton, '89 (women's basketball), Nancy Smith, '83 (women's basketball/soccer/softball) and Jon Cronin, '92 (men's basketball).
With 20 intercollegiate sports, Stonehill boasts one of the top athletic and academic programs in the country. In addition to finishing in the top three in the final NE-10 Presidents' Cup standings ten straight years, the Skyhawks have received the NCAA Division II Presidents' Award for Academic Achievement each of the first three years of the program's existence of honoring programs with an Academic Success Rate (ASR) of 90-percent or better. Stonehill has earned a 96% Academic Success Ranking (ASR) by the NCAA, which considers the academic success rate of the institution based on the graduation rate of student-athletes, good for eighth among all NCAA Division II institutions, with 12 Skyhawk teams receiving a perfect rating of 100%. In addition, the Skyhawks are ranked third in the National Collegiate Scouting Association (NCSA) Power Rankings for Division II used to assess the academic and athletic standards of all NCAA and NAIA athletic programs.