Jan. 29, 2008
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Loyola senior defender Kristen Stone was named the BIG EAST Conference Preseason Defensive Player of the Year today by a vote of the conference's coaches.
Stone was a unanimous All-BIG EAST First Team pick after leading the Greyhounds with 24 caused turnovers last season. She also topped the team with 37 ground balls. The two-time team captain was fourth in the BIG EAST in caused turnovers per game and fifth in ground balls per game.
"Kristen is a top defender, not just with her skills, but with her leadership and vocal abilities," Head Coach Kerri O'Day said. "She is such a constent player that I think she will continue to get better. I am excited for her to be recognized by the coaches early in the year, but I also think she will live up to the honor at the end of the season."
Following her junior season, Stone earned IWLCA Regional All-America First Team honors and was named to the All-BIG EAST First Team. She picked up IWLCA Academic Honor Roll mention, as well, for her efforts in the classroom.
In her three years at Loyola, Stone has recorded 71 ground balls and caused 46 turnovers.
The Greyhounds were picked to finish fifth in the conference, as well. Syracuse received five-of-six first-place votes, and was the coaches' pick to win the BIG EAST. Notre Dame picked up the other first-place vote and is slotted second.
Georgetown and Rutgers were selected third and fourth, followed by Loyola and Connecticut, respectively.
Loyola opens its season on Friday, February 15, 2008, with a 7 p.m. game at North Carolina. The Greyhounds play their first BIG EAST contest of the season on Saturday, February 23, Georgetown.