Patti Klecha-Porter, who has directed the field hockey team at Wesleyan since her arrival in Middletown in 1985, was inducted into the Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Fame on Nov. 13, for her long-time service as a lacrosse umpire.
Klecha-Porter was one of eight individual enshrined during a ceremony in Southington, Conn.
Klecha-Porter graduated from Ithaca College in 1981. As a student athlete at Ithaca, she was captain and MVP of both the field hockey and lacrosse teams. After graduating she continued playing field hockey at the U.S. Hockey level as well as club lacrosse for Hampshire New England. Klecha-Porter was inducted into the New York State Section V Hall of Fame in 1988 and a year later into her alma mater’s Sports Hall of Fame.
She earned a M.S. from Springfield College under the tutelage of Dottie Zenaty where she served as both assistant field hockey and head lacrosse coach. As a college field hockey coach at Wesleyan since 1985, Klecha-Porter has taken her teams to ECAC Championships in 1999 and 2000. She was named NESCAC Coach of year in 1999. She was inducted into the Connecticut Field Hockey Hall of Fame in 2007.
During her years as a coach, Klecha-Porter was introduced to umpiring both field hockey and lacrosse by the Connecticut Umpire Associations. In 1991, she earned her USL National Rating and in 1994 earned her International Umpiring rating and has umpired at the IFWLA World Cup in 2001, 2005, and 2009. More recently she has been officiating NCAA Division I, II, III tournament games including title games during the 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011 seasons. She also served as an umpire for the inaugural year of Connecticut Girls Lacrosse State Championship Finals and continues in that role today.
Klecha-Porter became very involved in umpiring training and served as the Chair of CWLOA Board of Umpires, USL Regional Co-Chair, and USL member-at-large on the National Umpire Committee. As a educator, she has produced several training tools and clinics to promote umpiring skills and knowledge of the game. She has been a main speaker at the USL Conventions for several years, pointing out “how to make the correct call” and the importance of education for umpires remaining current and consistent with the game and throughout the country. Klecha-Porter is quick to say she has treasured every umpiring opportunity but what will always remain her passion as an umpire of the game is keeping it safe, making sure it is fair, and having fun.