Connolly And LaPlante Named Preseason All-Patriot League
WORCESTER, Mass. – Senior Maureen Connolly and sophomore Marcia LaPlante were named to the Preseason All-Patriot League team, as voted on by the conference’s head coaches and media relations directors. In addition, Holy Cross was selected fifth in the Patriot League preseason poll, receiving 35 points in the voting process.
Connolly had a stellar season in 2016, when she was named Second Team NFHCA All-Region, First Team All-Patriot League and Academic All-Patriot League. The forward led the Patriot League in points (37), goals scored (15) and game-winning goals (7). She posted multi-goal games on five separate occasions and a pair of five-point performances. In her career, Connolly has posted 31 goals with 14 assists for a total of 76 points.
LaPlante, the 2016 Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Year and Rookie of the Year, looks to have another strong season in net for the Crusaders. In 2016, she posted the highest save percentage in the nation at .817, and earned Second Team NFHCA All-Region and First Team All-Patriot League honors. Last season she posted an 8-8 record and earned her first career win in her first start against UMass Lowell. LaPlante posted a pair of shutouts on the season and notched a career-high 17 saves against American in the Patriot League Semifinals.
In the preseason poll, American was voted to repeat as the conference champion with 71 points and 11 first-place votes. Boston University was selected to finish second with 62 points and three first-place votes. Also making the top five were Bucknell in third with 49 points, Lafayette in fourth with 49 points and Holy Cross in fifth with 35 points. Rounding out the rest of the poll were Lehigh (sixth, 26 points) and Colgate (seventh, 12 points).
The Crusaders begin their season on the road this Friday, as they take on Massachusetts at 1:00 p.m.
2017 Patriot League Field Hockey Preseason Poll
- American, 71 points (11 first-place votes)
- Boston University, 62 (3)
- Bucknell, 49
- Lafayette, 39
- Holy Cross, 35
- Lehigh, 26
- Colgate, 12
2017 Patriot League Field Hockey Preseason Major Awards
Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Rafaela Rubas, Jr., M, American
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Ally Hammel, Jr., D, Boston University
2017 Patriot League Field Hockey Preseason All-League Team
Rafaela Rubas, American (Jr., M)*
Leah DiGiandomenico, American (Sr., F)*
Rachel Stefano, American (Jr., D)*
Ally Hammel, Boston Univ. (Jr., D)*
Kalli Shumock, Boston Univ. (Sr., M)*
Stephanie Dressler, Bucknell (Sr., D)
Nicole Rupnik, Bucknell (Jr., F)
Maureen Connolly, Holy Cross (Sr., F) *
Marcia LaPlante, Holy Cross (So., GK)
Ellen Colbourne, Lafayette (Sr., M/F)
Cody Hunsicker, Lafayette (Sr., D)