May 17, 2012
BALTIMORE - The Loyola University Maryland men's and women's lacrosse teams gathered Thursday afternoon to celebrate a special commencement ceremony since they will miss Saturday's school-wide festivities to play in their respective NCAA Championships.
Nine student-athletes - five form the men's team and four from the women's - received their Loyola diplomas from University President Rev. Brian Linnane and other members of the Loyola faculty and administration.
"This is one of the most special events we have the privilege of celebrating at Loyola," said Jim Paquette, Loyola's Assistant Vice President/Director of Athletics. "Our student-athletes see this as another way to stay together as a class, advancing far enough into the NCAA Championships so they graduate in a special way as a team. The graduates and their families get to celebrate the event in a small, intimate setting that has a true family and team atmosphere."
Kip Fulks, Chief Operating Officer of Under Armour and a former lacrosse All-American at the University of Maryland, delivered the commencement address.
Ana Heneberry, Kellye Gallagher, Kerry Stoothoff and Virgina Weber received their degrees, while their counterparts from the men's team - Pat Byrnes, J.P. Dalton, Dylan Grimm, Eric Tillman and Alex Yackery - accepted theirs.
Also honored at the ceremony were three seniors who are members of Loyola's golf team: Ryan McCarthy, Patrick McCormick and Jay Mulieri. The trio is currently leading the Greyhounds at the NCAA Regional in Athens, Ga., and will not attend graduation ceremonies on Saturday.
Both teams will be in action Saturday as their classmates are graduating from the school. The women, who are the No. 6 seed in their Championships, will play at No. 3 Maryland in a 12 noon game in College Park, Md., and the top-seeded men will take on the University of Denver in Annapolis, Md.