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June 2013 Archives

Alexander is State Trainer-of-the-Year

 

alexander72dpi_4828.jpgEastern graduate is recognized by CATA after first year at her alma mater

alexanderhead2012_72_0101.jpgWILLIMANTIC, Conn. - The annual symposium of the Connecticut Athletic Trainers' Association hosted this past May 23 by Central Connecticut State University was fairly routine -- replete with the requisite presentations by visiting doctors and experts on such topics as Snapping Hip Syndromes and Femoral Acetabular Impingement - and including an array of workshops, panel discussions and demonstrations.

Having attended every one of the symposiums but one since returning to Connecticut in the summer of 1995, Eastern Connecticut State University athletic trainer Julie Glode Alexander  figured that she would not be missing all that much when administrative duties at Eastern had her tied her up for most of that Thursday morning.

Only partly true.

While her back was turned, so to speak, CATA had selected Alexander as the 2013 recipient of its Athletic Trainer-of-the-Year Award. Whether due to her history of attendance at the symposium over the last 20 years or due to a miscommunication on the part of the CATA Board of Directors, Alexander was never officially notified in advance that she had been named as this year's recipient, and that she would be officially recognized at the CATA symposium in May.

Still unaware of what had transpired at the symposium earlier that day, Alexander received a number of text messages from colleagues on Thursday congratulating her on the award. 'What award'?, she remembers thinking. Eventually, a congratulatory phone call the following Monday from CATA President-Elect James Doran - the men's basketball athletic trainer at the University of Connecticut - clarified the confusion and made it official.

Alexander, who returned as athletic trainer at her alma mater last summer after nearly 20 years with the Sacred Heart University athletic training staff, becomes the 20th recipient of an award whose previous recipients include such state athletic training luminaries as Kathy Pirog of Central Connecticut, Cathy Horne, formerly of Connecticut College, Bob Howard of the University of Connecticut - and Mary Cardarelli (mother of Eastern sophomore basketball player Megan) of Manchester High School.

Eastern Director of Athletics Dr. Jeff Konin praised the selection of Alexander. "It is a tremendous honor for Julie to be recognized by her peers," he offered. "She is a big part of our program's success because she pays close attention to the health and well-being of our student-athletes."

Generally, an individual must be nominated by a colleague in order to receive consideration for the award. While she never actually received confirmation, Alexander made an educated guess that it was Howard who had forwarded her name, and spearheaded the support for her candidacy.

She was mostly right.

alexander272dpi_4841.jpg"When the Board of Directors asked for nominations, I said that 'you guys have forgotten about Julie,'" said Howard, whose professional relationship with Alexander has endured for nearly two decades. "I don't want to take 100 percent of the credit (for her selection), but I pushed them (the Board of Directors) in that direction. For everything that she has done for CATA - which numbers upwards of 500 members -- and for athletic trainers throughout the country, it was obvious that she was the right representative. She has done everything that she needs to have done to earn this," added Howard.

While Alexander was flattered to be singled out by a vote of her peers, she deflected the praise. "Basically, I'm just doing my job," said Alexander, a member of the Eastern volleyball program and a student athletic trainer under Dr. David Yeo as an undergraduate, who went on to earn her M.S. in Education from Old Dominion University in 1993. After serving as a graduate assistant in athletic training at Hampton University, the Mansfield native spent two years as assistant athletic trainer at Saint Bonaventure University before being appointed at Sacred Heart University. In her final two years at Sacred Heart, she was promoted to assistant athletic director and head athletic trainer.

Since returning to Connecticut, Alexander has been active in CATA, serving on the Board of Directors for ten years through 2010 and as secretary for three.  In addition to her daily duties at Sacred Heart, she held the position as clinical instructor and adjunct faculty in the Human Movement and Sport Science Program, overseeing practicums and teaching courses.

"As an athletic trainer, you always do a little extra," she says. "You stay until the job is done. It's just what you do. There are athletic trainers all over the state working 70 hour weeks."

Howard points out that many of those individuals who go above and beyond to advance their profession and provide special care for their student-athletes, oftentimes don't look upon it as such.

"It's that type of person," he notes, "who unfortunately, doesn't recognize in and of themselves how special they are and how much they've done, and how much people respect them."

 

 

Two from Eastern are NE Hall of Famers

vic_switch_72dpi_2294.jpgTwo Eastern Connecticut State University basketball alumni were inducted into New England Basketball Hall of Fame Saturday, June 22 at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA. At right in photo at left, Victor Pereira displays his Hall of Fame certificate along with his former head coach, Dr. Dan Switchenko. A point guard, Pereira was a four-year starter under Switchenko from 1984 through 1988, leading the Warriors to two ECAC tournaments and earning ECAC All-New England honors as a senior and All-Little East Conference honors twice. Pereira, who remains the program's all-time leader in assists, will be inducted into the Eastern E-Club Hall of Fame Oct. 19. He will be presented for induction by Switchenko, the program's winningest head coach and a 2002 inductee. As a senior at Durfee High School in 1984, Pereira was the starting point guard on a team which went undefeated en route to the Massachusetts large school state championship. Pereira currently serves as director of athletics at Durfee HS. Additionally inducted into the New England Hall of Fame but unable to attend the ceremonies was Rich Vega. Also a four-year starter at guard, Vega (1998-02) was a two-time All-ECAC selection and three-time first-team All-LEC pick under former head coach Barry Davis, and graduated as the program's all-time leading scorer with 1,593 points. That point total currently ranks second all-time at Eastern.

LEC: 25 from Eastern are All-Academic

Seven earn the honor for the maximum third time in their spring sport

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All-Time Listing.doc.

In the spring, France (far left) and Labanara earned LEC All-Academic honors for the third time this year.

WILLIMANTIC, Conn. --  A total of 25 Eastern Connecticut State University student-athletes have been named to the Little East Conference All-Academic Team for the spring season.

Despite sponsoring only six of the LEC's seven championships in the spring, Eastern had the second-high total of All-Academic qualifiers among the eight member institutions. Coupled with 23 fall academic qualifiers  in five sports (sharing second place), and 18 in  five winter sports (placing third), Eastern  amassed 66 All-Academic achievers during the 2012-13 academic. Eastern's season total was the third-highest in the conference.

Seven players from Eastern's 2013 LEC playoff champion women's lacrosse team gained the honor - the most by any Eastern program this season.  The women's track, men's lacrosse and softball programs featured four selections each in the spring, with baseball and men's outdoor track recording three selections each. 

This year's total gives Eastern 441 qualifiers in the six-year history of the All-Academic program, an average of nearly 75 each academic year.

Student-athletes having reached sophomore academic and athletic status and showing a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.30 are eligible for the award each season.

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Franklin (at left) was a seven-time LEC All-Academic selection in his career.

This spring, seven senior Eastern student-athletes attained the maximum third All-Academic honor in their spring sport: Health & Physical Education major Drew Accomando (Monroe) in baseball, Sport & Leisure Management major Christine Charpentier (Monroe) in women's track, SLM major Arielle Cooper (Mystic) and HPE major Katie Sokoloski (Eastford) in softball, HPE major Drew Deane (Vernon) and Psychology major Jordan Munsell (Waterford) in men's lacrosse, and Elementary Education major Daniela Marchitto (Orange) in women's lacrosse.

Last month, six of this spring's LEC All-Academic qualifiers earned an E-Club Outstanding Scholar-Athlete Award (minimum cumulative 3.50 GPA through last fall) for the maximum second time: Accomando, Charpentier, Deane, Marchitto, Munsell, and Sokoloski.

Junior Elementary Education major Katie France (Portland) and sophomore Accounting major Kelly Labanara (Chaplin) earned a spot on the LEC All-Academic team for the third time this year as cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field participants.

In his career, senior Political Science major Ryan Franklin (Glastonbury) reached LEC All-Academic status seven times in three sports (cross country, indoor and outdoor track), and Charpentier, France, Marchitto and Munsell six times each. Charpentier ran indoor and outdoor track, and Marchitto and Munsell played soccer in addition to lacrosse.marchitto_sru_72_5082.jpg

Marchitto (at right) was one of seven players from the 2013 LEC playoff championship women's lacrosse team to qualify for the LEC All-Academic team.

This past spring, Cooper was named first-team All-America at third base and LEC Player-of-the-Year, and Marchitto was selected first-team All-LEC in both sports and additionally honored as LEC Midfielder-of-the-Year in lacrosse.

Additional individuals gaining spots on the academic squad were women's lacrosse players Rachel Meotti (Glastonbury), a senior, Kelsea Burkhardt (Old Saybrook), a junior, and sister Amy Burkhardt (Old Saybrook), a sophomore, juniors Erin Conn (Moriches, NY) and Christine Lillis (Waterford), and sophomore Lauren Wells (Stratford); senior men's lacrosse players Merrick Smith (Stonington) and Nick Stoop (Crofton, MD), track and field athletes Alex Verrill (Hiram, ME), a senior, junior Lauren Hultzman (Putnam) and sophomore Dylan Kruppa (Torrington), junior baseball players Michael Pendergast (Farmington) and Greg Porter (Mystic); and junior softball players Mattie Brett (Waterford) and Stephanie Johnson (Southington).               
  

M-Soccer Program Aids Worthy Cause

 

Kevin Alston with volunteers72.jpgOn Saturday, June 8, representatives from the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer program participated in the Be The Match bone marrow drive at Gillette Stadium.  The Be The Match Registry and The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society set up tables inside the stadium to stage their respective drives.  Also involved was 25-year-old New England Revolution defender Kevin Alston, who has been diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), a treatable form of leukemia. Alston was on hand to sign bobble heads for fans and later had his photograph taken with the Eastern contingent. The Eastern personnel set up at the entrance to the stadium and handed out information related to registering as a bone marrow donor. Eastern athletes and coaches have been active in the Be The Match program since 2012 senior men's soccer player Jon DeCasanova was diagnosed with aplastic anemia last summer. In above photo from left: Eastern sophomore Zane Lombardo, senior Mike Radlbeck, Ricky Newball, sophomore Arman Karbassioon, Alston, Tyler Belfleur, Karen Plante and husband Don Plante. Karen is Jon DeCasanova's mother and Don is Jon's stepfather. The 15-year-old Belfleur, was "drafted" as a permanent member of the Eastern men's soccer program this past spring. A native of Canterbury, Belfleur continues his recovery from a brain injury sustained in an ATV accident a year ago.

Softball: Three are ECAC All-Stars

 

headsSBecac.jpgCooper becomes program's first ECAC Player-of-the-Year in 21 seasons

WILLIMANTIC, Conn.  - Eastern Connecticut State University senior All-America third baseman Arielle Cooper (Mystic) has become the program's first ECAC New England Division III softball Player-of-the-Year in 21 years, and has been joined as a first-team all-star by senior first baseman Kelly Paterson (Southington) and sophomore DP Sam Rossetti (Shelton).

Cooper repeated first-team All-ECAC honors while the ECAC honor was the first for Paterson and Rossetti. Cooper and Paterson were the only first-team selections at their positions, while Rossetti shared DP recognition with University of New England sophomore Adrienne Chase.

All three were earlier recognized as first-team selections to the National Fastpitch Coaches' Association (NFCA) All-New England Region team, Cooper and Rossetti recognized with first-team honors and Paterson third-team accolades. All three were also cited earlier as first-team All-Little East Conference picks, Cooper gaining the honor as LEC Player-of-the-Year. Last month, Cooper become the first third baseman in program history to earn first-team All-America honors when she repeated national honors at that position by the National Fastpitch Coaches' Association (NFCA).

Batting primarily leadoff this past year for the 28-14 Warriors, Cooper enjoyed a sterling career and brilliant final season. She led Eastern in virtually every offensive category, among them batting (.538), slugging (1.076), total bases (142), on-base percentage (.629),  runs (61), hits (71), RBI (43), home runs (16), doubles (13), and walks (34). Her marks for batting, slugging, total bases, on-base percentage, runs, hits and home runs represented program season records, and her final season batting average was 99 points above her previous-season best, set in 2012.

After setting the current consecutive game hitting streak of 33 as a junior, Cooper hit safely in 26 games this year. After failing to hit safely in one game that stopped her 33-game streak in 2012, Cooper had a hit in each of the team's final four games that year and in the first 26 this year, giving her at least one hit in 63 of 64 games in that stretch.

Cooper ranked second nationally in Division III in on-base percentage, third in slugging, fourth in home runs, home runs per game and batting, sixth in runs per game and seventh in walks and toughest to strike out. Cooper fanned twice in 170 plate appearances this season.

Cooper finished as the program's all-time leader in career batting (.406) and slugging average (.739), on-base percentage (.474), hits (221), runs (176), doubles (40), home runs (40), and total bases (403), was second in games (177), at-bats (545), and assists (310), third in RBI (129), and fourth in walks (68). Her assist total is the highest among fulltime third baseman.

Paterson batted a career-high .356 this season to push her career average over .300 to .309. She was second to Cooper with 42 RBI - more than twice as many as her previous high total in a season. Paterson was used mostly as the team's first baseman in 2013 but also started 14 games at second. She batted in four different spots in the order, but was the team's No. 7 hitter in more than half of the games. Paterson's batting average never dropped below .350 after going 3-for-3 in the first game of a March 30 doubleheader. She was batting .402 with 11 games left in the season.

Playing primarily first base, but also second, she completed her career ranked fifth all-time with 642 putouts and tied for sixth with a .984 fielding average.

As a part-time starter as a freshman on the 2012 record-setting 44-3 team, Rossetti batted .333 in 66 plate appearances with one extra-base hit and ten RBI. In her first season as a starter in 2013, Rossetti also played first base and right field and batted .368 - third best on the squad - with five home runs and 35 RBI. She appeared in all but three games, making 30 starts - 27 of them as either the team's No. 3 or cleanup hitter. Rossetti, also a field hockey letterwinner this past year, carried a .400+ batting average through the regular season, with a seven-game hitting streak in late March and early April lifted it to a season-high .486.

This year marks the third time in four seasons that an Eastern players as earned a major ECAC award in the season-ending awards program. In 2010 and 2012, All-America Molly Rathburn was voted Pitcher-of-the-Year by the ECAC.  Until 2013, Eastern's previous Player-of-the-Year selection came when All-America outfielder Leanne Shoop was tabbed as ECAC Player-of-the-Year. Eastern had earned as many as three All-ECAC selections previously in both 1992 and 1993, but had never before 2013 been recognized with three first-teamers.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Golf Fundraiser Set for Sunday, Aug. 25

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The 4th Annual Eastern Connecticut State University Women's Soccer/Women's Volleyball Golf Tournament will be staged rain or shine Sunday, August 25 at the University Club of Connecticut.  Registration for the four-person scramble is set for 11 a.m., with a shotgun start scheduled for noon. A dinner and awards ceremony will follow the tournament. Cost is $135, which includes cart, greens fees, dinner, raffle and gift. Those wishing to attend only  the dinner will be charged $30. Tee sponsorship is $100. All proceeds to benefit the Eastern women's soccer and women's volleyball programs. Registration forms are available at http://www.easternct.edu/athletics/women_soccer/women_soccer.htm
For more information, contact head women's soccer coach Christian D'Ambrosio at 860-465-0175 or at dambrosioc@easternct.edu.

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