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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Honoring a Great Team

The women´s ice hockey team joins the audience in giving themselves a round of applause for a great season at their honorary ceremony last week. - Photo by Tony Naro
The women´s ice hockey team joins the audience in giving themselves a round of applause for a great season at their honorary ceremony last week. – Photo by Tony Naro

The women’s ice hockey team has dominated the headlines and the conference over the past several weeks and as their inaugural season draws to a close, congratulations are in order.

On Wednesday, March 10, a ceremony was held for the girls in the McCormack cafeteria. Opening the event was the voice of the Beacons, Al Dutilio. Usually in the press box calling out goals scored by the players, Dutilio had the opportunity to recap awards won over the season by players and other highlights of the season. Athletics Director Charlie Titus followed and called the team up for a round of applause.

ECAC East Division III coach of the year Laura Schuler spoke of the will of her players and their outstanding characters. “Hockey at UMass is not just a two-hour practice. Many players would wake up early for practice and then afterwards leave for four more hours of work.”

Keith Motley, vice chancellor of Student Affairs, spoke for the administration, congratulating the team on its great year. “It has been great to come from Northeastern University and see our team play at the level they did. The whole team is ‘all conference’ in my eyes!” Motley also gave special thanks to UMB goalie Amanda Boucher who, during the season, “helped me with my workout routine and answered all my questions about hockey.”

Titus closed by saying that he was happy and proud of the women’s ice hockey team and that they were “setting a new bar for all UMB athletic teams.”

I had the opportunity to catch up with the coaches after the event to ask them a few more questions about the team’s season, their keys to success, and what they expect for next year.

“Our players are very unselfish. They are not cocky even though they are very talented” said assistant coach Linda Lundrigan.

Clearly this year’s team had some star players, including two league leaders in points scored. However, the coaches both agreed that because the team celebrated in each other’s victories they were able to avoid any lack of team spirit. “Good people want to go to this school and that helps us out a lot,” said coach Schueler. Lundrigan added that the players worked hard for their success, saying, “Our kids aren’t given anything and nothing is taken for granted.”

Next season the team will be expecting six to eight newcomers, so it seems as if the biggest challenge will be what to do with all their talent.