Reigning Champion Endicott Picked First In CCC Women's Lacrosse Preseason Poll

Reigning Champion Endicott Picked First In CCC Women's Lacrosse Preseason Poll

2018 CCC Women's Lacrosse Preseason Poll Video

 

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Defending Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Women’s Lacrosse Regular-Season and Tournament Champion Endicott is poised to repeat the feat in 2018 as the Gulls were selected as the preseason favorite in the 2018 CCC Preseason Coaches’ Poll. They collected 79 points in the voting, including eight of the first place votes.

Last season, Endicott put together a perfect conference season. It went 8-0 in conference play (12-3 overall) and earned the No. 1 seed in the CCC Championship Tournament. Receiving a bye directly into the semifinal round, the Gulls picked up a dominating 12-5 victory over No. 5 seed Gordon and then had a convincing 14-5 win over No. 2 Roger Williams in the Tournament Championship game.

In the NCAA Tournament, the CCC Tournament Champions staged a comeback late in their First Round matchup with Farmingdale State, but fell just short as they were eliminated by a score of 16-14.

The Hawks, which were denied a Tournament Championship repeat last year by the Gulls, were picked second in the poll with 70 points and the final first place vote. A year ago, the Hawks posted a 7-1 conference mark (13-4 overall).

The University of New England, a CCC Tournament Semifinalist in 2017, was picked third in the poll with 62 points. UNE went 6-2 in league play (10-8 overall) last year. The fourth and fifth spots in this year’s voting were occupied by two teams that reached the CCC Quarterfinals a year ago. Salve Regina earned 49 points to claim the fourth spot, while Western New England collected 44 points to land in fifth.

Gordon (35 points), Curry (31), Nichols (21), and Wentworth (14) made up the bottom half of this year’s rankings.

The CCC women’s lacrosse season begins this weekend with teams starting their non-conference schedules. Conference play begins a month later with the first league games scheduled for Saturday, March 24. The top six teams in the 2018 regular-season conference standings will qualify for the CCC Championship Tournament, which starts with the quarterfinals on Saturday, April 28 and concludes with the Conference Championship on Friday, May 4. The CCC Tournament Champion will earn the conference’s automatic qualifier in to the 2018 NCAA Women’s Lacrosse Championship.

Click HERE to view the whole 2017 CCC women’s lacrosse schedule.

 

2018 CCC Women's Lacrosse Preseason Coaches' Poll

 

Team

Points (First Place Votes)

1.

Endicott

79 (8)

2.

Roger Williams

70 (1)

3.

University of New England

62

4.

Salve Regina

49

5.

Western New England

44

6.

Gordon

35

7.

Curry

31

8.

Nichols

21

9.

Wentworth

14

 

 

2018 CCC Women's Lacrosse Previews

1. Endicott

The Endicott women's lacrosse team, led by first-year head coach, Maureen Spellman is hungry for another CCC Championship as the squad took the title during the 2017 season. The Gulls will look for leadership from several All-CCC Team selections from last season, including Defensive Player of the Year Bella Rino (Northborough, Mass.) and Rookie of the Year Jennifer Lacroix (Wrentham, Mass.). Also returning for Endicott are Olivia Larson (Cheshire, Conn.), Ali Campbell (Lakeville, Mass.), and Talia Dellatto (Andover, Mass.), who earned All-CCC Second Team honors. During the 2017 season, the Gulls went 14-5 overall and a perfect 8-0 in conference play.

    Jennifer Lacroix, EC

2. Roger Williams

The Roger Williams women’s lacrosse team had another stellar season, finishing the regular season with a 12-3 record while clinching the No.2 seed and a first-round bye for the Commonwealth Coast Conference tournament. The Hawks made their way to the CCC Championship for the fourth straight year but couldn’t collect another CCC title as the Hawks were downed by Endicott in the championship game.

This year’s team will look to replace the void left by 2017 All-CCC First Team attacker McKenna Everding and 2017 All-CCC Second Team goalie Kimberly Bolk. Guiding the Hawks will be first-year head coach Jennifer Fox, who comes to RWU after spending last season as an assistant at Endicott. She will lead a Hawk squad that brings in 12 new players and returns six starters from last year including 2017 CCC Offensive Player of the Year Kaelin Hogan (Bethel, Conn.).

   Kaelin Hogan, RWU

3. University of New England

The University of New England and 10th-year head coach Sue Estabrook return nine starters from last year's group that posted a second straight 6-2 mark in league play and reached the conference semifinals. Back for action is senior defender Jolena Lampron (Lyman, Maine) (65 gb, 49 ct, 46 dc, 16 goals), who was an All-CCC First Team selection in 2017 and has received postseason honors throughout her career. The same can be said for junior midfielder Korinne Bohunsky (Eliot, Maine) (37 goals, 94 dc, 33 ct), who was an All-CCC Second Team pick a year ago. All of UNE's representatives on last season's Third Team, senior defender Olivia Carpenter (Middlebury, Vt.) (42 gb, 21 ct), junior attacker Nichole Carvalho (South Kingstown, R.I.) (37 goals), and junior defender Kyra Taylor (Meriden, N.H.) (20 ct) are back as well, along with one of the team's leading goal-scorers in sophomore attacker Anna Stowell (Sutton, N.H.) (39 goals).

   Olivia Carpenter, UNE

 

4. Salve Regina

The Seahawks will look to continue their success from 2017 after the team posted its most wins in the previous five seasons and reached the playoffs for the second time under head coach Bill Villareal, who now enters his fourth season. The Seahawks will feature of mix of both experienced and talented young players. The team returns its top two scorers, Maddie Villareal (Portsmouth, R.I.) and Katie Kline (Brookfield, Conn.), both of whom were named All-CCC players in 2017. Kline joins fellow senior Brianna Wilcox (Somers, Conn.) and juniors Kerri Beland (Attleboro, Mass.) and Lindsey Smith (North Attleboro, Mass.) as captains in 2018.

   Katie Kline, SRU

5. Western New England

With a young squad that features just one senior and four juniors, the Golden Bears will look to improve on last season’s 6-12 campaign under head coach Aimee Klepacki, who begins her 19th season in charge of the women’s lacrosse program this spring.

Sophomore midfielder Lindsey Phillips (East Longmeadow, Mass.) is the team’s top returning offensive threat after starting all 18 games and compiling 45 points (23 goals, 22 assists) as a freshman in 2017.

Sophomore Shannen Barrett (Rensselaer, N.Y.) and junior Kristen Breen (Ellington, Conn.) are also back after combining for 45 points last season, while two-time All-CCC selection Shannon McFadden (West Islip, N.Y.) returns in goal.

Western New England hosts Springfield in its 2018 season opener on Saturday, Feb. 24. CCC play gets underway on Tuesday, March 27, when the Golden Bears host Curry.

    Shannon McFadden, WNE

6. Gordon

Gordon returns two-time All-CCC Second Team junior attacker Olivia McCarrick (Glen Burnie, Md.) who led the CCC with 59 goals and was ranked fifth in assists with 26.  Senior defender Zita Nagel (Wayland, Mass.) is back to shore up the defense as she started 13 games on the Fighting Scots back line. Sophomore goalkeeper Melanie Dwyer (Reading, Mass.) also returns as she played in 16 games last season and ranked fifth in the CCC in saves with 123. The Fighting Scots open the season Feb. 24 on the road against Mount Holyoke. They will travel to Florida for spring break to play Fitchburg State and Kean March 13 and March 15. They open CCC play against Nichols at home March 24.

 
Olivia McCarrick, GC

7. Curry

The Curry women's lacrosse team enters the 2018 season coming off a 2017 campaign which saw it finish with a 7-10 overall record with a 2-6 mark in the CCC. The squad will look to improve upon its finish last season as it has a solid core of returners with a blend of talented newcomers to the program.

Top returner for the Colonels is sophomore midfielder Abby Dubel (Wolfeboro, N.H) who finished her rookie season with 30 points, played and started in all 17 games played, had 56 ground balls and 37 caused turnovers.  Dubel was named once as the CCC Rookie of the Week and ECAC Northeast Rookie of the Week. She was also named to the CCC Third Team All-Conference Team.

Other top returners include sophomore midfielder Kayla Merritt (Attleboro, Mass.) who started and played in all 17 games and finished her rookie season with 25 draw controls, 14 ground balls, 12 caused turnovers and seven points, junior defender Harper Meakin (Marblehead, Mass.) who started and played in 16 of 17 total games and finished the season with 24 ground balls and 12 caused turnovers. Sophomore midfielder Abigail Roy (Nashua, N.H.) who started and played in 16 of 17 total games and finished the season with 34 ground balls and 25 caused turnovers. 

Newcomers to look out for are: sophomore transfer attack Leona Stevens (Kingston, Mass.) and freshmen goaltender Amy Collard (Lakeville, Mass.), defenders Allie Wysocki (Agawam, Mass.) and Colleen Donnelly (Atkinson, N.H.), midfielders Katie Tarr (Atkinson, N.H.) and Lily Ashford (Atkinson, N.H.) and attacker Katie Parker (Branford, Conn.).

The 2018 Colonels kick off the season Saturday, March 3 at Framingham State at noon.

 
Abby Dubel, CC

8. Nichols

 

The Nichols women’s lacrosse program begins its second year under head coach Melissa Rausch looking to replace the offense generated by 2017 All-CCC Second Team pick Brooke Marion. Junior Kirsten Sullivan (Arlington, Mass.) (30-10-40) and senior Lindsay O’Connell (Danvers, Mass.) (28-5-33) are back for their junior and senior campaigns, respectively, while senior Mellissa LaFleur (Chicopee, Mass.) returns after leading the Bison in both draw controls (51) and ground balls (39) last season.

 
Lindsay O'Connell, NC

9. Wentworth

With 13 letter-winners returning from last season’s squad, the 2018 edition of the Wentworth women’s lacrosse team looks to make a run at the program’s first-ever Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament berth. Among those 13 returners, the Leopards return four of their top five scorers, including junior Brooke Paradis (Pelham, N.H.) who became the first Wentworth women’s lacrosse player to earn All-CCC honors when she was named to the Third Team last season. Paradis scored a program-record 47 goals to go along with six assists for 53 points; the second-highest single-season point total in program history. She also established a program record with 62 draw controls and is the program’s all-time leading scorer with 107 points. Joining Paradis among the key returners is classmate Leah Cummins (Plymouth, Mass.) who had 10 points (eight goals, two assists), 31 ground balls, 19 draw controls, and 19 caused turnovers. Junior Caitlin McCormick (Hanson, Mass.) also returns after leading the Leopards in ground balls (40) and caused turnovers (22) as a sophomore.

 
Brooke Paradis, WIT

 

Season previews contributed by each school's sports information department.

 

ABOUT THE COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE

The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), founded in 1984, is an NCAA Division III athletic conference comprised of ten full member and four associate member institutions throughout the New England region. Its membership aims to provide student-athletes with a positive experience in their pursuit of excellence through high academic standards, quality competition, and a meaningful student life. The conference administers championships in 18 intercollegiate sports.

 

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