Tuesday, November 19, 2013
With a 13-6 regular season record, the Rider University field hockey team claimed its fifth straight conference championship in the inaugural season of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference this year. The Broncs will now graduate four seniors, including Sandra Penas, the all-time points leader.
The hard work on the field by the Broncs translated into recognition from the conference where Rider won multiple awards. Penas was named the Co-Player of the Year, freshman Nicole Hareau was named the MAAC Rookie of the Year and Head Coach Lori Hussong was named the MAAC Coach of the Year.
Speaking of her award, Penas said, “I got really excited when I heard my name. I wasn’t expecting it. I feel really honored. I could not have accomplished this without my team.”
“I’m so happy for Sandra,” Coach Hussong said. “She has never, ever lost her spirit or her desire to excel. Player of the Year is quite an accomplishment. I’m proud of everything she has done for our program.”
Penas and fellow senior Alicia Govannicci were named to the All-MAAC First Team while Hareau, freshman Carlota Alsina, sophomore Rachel Ippolite, and juniors Stacey Dileo and Dezarae Fillmyer were named to the Second Team All-MAAC. The Broncs also had 10 players named to the MAAC All-Academic Team for having a 3.20 or higher grade point average.
“I’m just as proud for what this team has accomplished in the classroom,” Hussong said. “The team exemplifies what a student-athlete should be.”
Hussong is currently in her 14th season at Rider. “It’s a real honor to be voted by your peers as coach of the year,” she said. “With the level of competition, this could have gone to any coach in the league. I’m happy and proud that Rider has done so well and I’m just a beneficiary of that effort.”