3 Spring Squads Capture Little Three Titles

Wesleyan fashioned one of its finest spring sports seasons in history, highlighted by Little Three titles in a first-ever combination of baseball, softball and men’s lacrosse.  The squads combined for an outstanding 62-32-1 overall record.

Sam Stanton ’14. (Photo by Shoaib Tareen P'15)

Sam Stanton ’14. (Photo by Shoaib Tareen P’15)

Wesleyan had its fair share of NESCAC honorees as the baseball squad had the largest contingent of any NESCAC college with six individuals honored, led by Head Coach Mark Woodworth ’94, who secured his second NESCAC Coach of the Year award. He was recognized by his conference coaching peers for the first time during his rookie season in 2002. First-team picks included conference batting champ Donnie Cimino ’15 (.399 average) and Andrew Yin ’15 (.381 average with a school-record 29-game hitting streak). Sam Goodwin-Boyd ’15, who played errorless at first base in 314 chances, and pitchers Nick Cooney ’15 and Jeff Blout ’14 all picked up second-team laurels. Wesleyan qualified for the NESCAC tournament for the first time since 2010 while winning the NESCAC West to earn the right to host the playoffs for the first time. The 25-15-1 Cardinals finished second behind Amherst in the tournament.

The softball team, which tied a program record for wins in a season with its 24-12 record, returned to the NESCAC tournament for the first time since winning the crown in 2010.  That achievement capped a run of four straight trips to the post-season.  Wesleyan had three first-team selections, matching the the 2010 and 2008 seasons, with one new wrinkle – the Player of the Year honor for Allee Beatty ’13, who also picked up first-team all-New England and district academic All-America accolades. Beatty led Wesleyan with a .421 batting average and a NESCAC-best 25 stolen bases. She graduates as Wesleyan’s all-time leader for stolen bases (114), runs scored (152) and triples (12). Joining her on the NESCAC first-team were Jill Gately ’15, who set program records for doubles (14), home runs (7) and RBI (45) in a season; and ace hurler Su Pardo’16, who also attained Rookie of the Year honors.

Men’s lacrosse, with a program-best five All-Americans, returned to the NESCAC championship game for the sixth time with a 13-5 record.  Sam Stanton ’14 garnered first-team USILA All-America recognition and was designated short-stick defensive midfielder of the year after pacing the Cardinals with 67 ground balls along with 14 caused turnovers, two goals and 10 assists. Finding a spot on the second team were defender Mike Robinson ’13 and long-pole midfielder Brendan Hanley ’13. Both were NESCAC first-team choices.  Robinson, with a team-best 29 caused turnovers despite missing the final five games due to injury, also was named a Scholar All-American by the USILA, while Hanley, with 40 grounders, 17 CTs, eight goals and four assists, was chosen to play in the annual USILA Division III North-South senior all-star game. Rounding out the national picture as honorable-mention All-Americans were midfielders Graham Macnab ’14, who led the team with 24 goals, and Aidan Daniell ’14, who had 27 points.

Men’s and women’s crew both enjoyed successful seasons as the women went 10-3 and the men 9-4. Both men’s and women’s sides received NESCAC laurels;  Trevor Michelson ’13 for the men and Robin Cotter ’13 for the women were first-team picks. Sam Hoefle ’13 and Clare Doyle ’14 were second-teamers for the men and women.

Alexis Walker (credit SteveMcLaughlinPhotography.com)

Alexis Walker ’16. (Photo by SteveMcLaughlinPhotography.com)

Wesleyan sent two individuals to the NCAA Division III Track & Field Championships as school-record holder Alexis Walker ’16 rode her 18-5 1/4 long jump to an NCAA berth. Skyler Cummins ’13 accompanied Walker to Nationals as a qualifier in the 1500m men’s race. In addition to her record, Walker, who was cited as NESCAC Outstanding Rookie Performer, was a two-event NESCAC champ, taking both the 100m dash and the long jump. Hannah Zimmerman ’13 repeated as NESCAC 10k winner. Two other women’s records fell during the season as Sierra Livious ’14 broke her own shot put mark with a season-best 41-10 3/4 throw. Walker was part of the school-record setting 4x100m relay that included Idara Foster ’15, Lia Monti ’13 and Melissa Luning ’16 (:48.24).

Men’s tennis, with a singles and doubles lineup that featured three freshmen, two sophomores and a senior, went 5-4 in NESCAC competition to qualify for the NESCAC tournament for the first time. As the fifth seed, the Cardinals gave fourth-seeded Bates a battle before falling by a 5-3 count. Head Coach Mike Fried was recognized by his fellow NESCAC coaches as co-Coach of the Year for his outstanding direction as interim head coach.

In women’s lacrosse, midfielder Abby D’Angelo’14 repeated as an IWLCA second-team all-Berkshire Division all-star following a 5-10 season. Wesleyan continued to excel outside the NESCAC with a 4-1 record. As usual, the NESCAC dominated the national scene with seven squads ranked among the top-20 and both Middlebury and Trinity reaching the NCAA Final Four, both losing to national champ Salisbury, Middlebury in the semifinals, and Trinity in the finals.