May 8, 2011
BALTIMORE - One day after the Loyola University Maryland women's lacrosse team won its first BIG EAST Conference Championship, the Greyhounds learned they will host Massachusetts in the NCAA Championships First Round on Saturday, May 14.
The sixth-seeded Greyhounds and the Minutewomen will play at 1 o'clock at Ridley Athletic Complex.
Loyola is making its 14th appearance in the NCAA Championships and first since the 2004 season when it lost 5-4 at home to Vanderbilt.
"This means a lot to our program and our school," Head Coach Jen Adams said. "We have worked very hard to get to this point, and we are excited to start the tournament."
Massachusetts advanced to the NCAA Championships by virtue of defeating Canisius, 16-8, in the NCAA Play-In Game yesterday to improve to 17-2 this season. Last week, the Minutewomen defeated Richmond, 16-12, to win its third-straight Atlantic-10 Conference title.
Loyola, which is 16-2 overall this season, defeated Syracuse in the BIG EAST Semifinals and then topped Notre Dame yesterday in the BIG EAST Championship Game on Saturday.
The Greyhounds are led by third-year Head Coach Jen Adams who earned BIG EAST co-Coach of the Year honors. Loyola placed a conference-high eight players on the All-BIG EAST teams, led by first-team honorees Grace Gavin and Abby Rehfuss. Gavin also was named the BIG EAST Attacker of the Year for the second season in a row.
Meg Decker, Kellye Gallagher, Ana Heneberry, Mary Heneberry, Marlee Paton and Kerry Stoothoff all were named to the Second Team. Stoothoff was named the BIG EAST Championships Most Outstanding Player after making 10 saves in the title game.
Massachusetts Head Coach Angela McMahon is in her first season with the Minutewomen after spending the last two seasons as the head coach of BIG EAST foe Connecticut. Massachusetts was ranked 14th in last week's IWLCA Coaches Poll, and the Minutewomen are led on the field by Katie Ferris who set the single-season school record with 55 goals this year.