Field Hockey Earns NFHCA Honors for the 21st Straight Season

Graphic honoring the 2018 Lyons Field Hockey team as they were recognized as NFHCA National Academic Team.

GILBERT, Ariz. - The Mount Holyoke College field hockey team has been recognized by the 2018 ZAG Field Hockey/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) as one of the top academic teams in Division III. The Lyons also saw 20 student-athletes named to the NFHCA National Academic Squad, while one garnered Scholar of Distinction recognition.

One of 131 schools to be recognized, Mount Holyoke posted a grade point average of 3.46. The Lyons have been recognized as a National Academic Squad every year of head coach Andy Whitcomb's career.

Earning Scholar of Distinction honors this season was graduate student Haley Newsham (Ashby, Mass./Bromfield School). To be recognized, a student-athlete must have achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.90 or higher through their first semester of the 2018-19 academic year. Newsham was among 268 student-athletes to be honored this year.

Mount Holyoke's individuals named to the National Academic Squad were first year defender Phoebe Aaronson (Mountain View, Calif./Los Altos), first year midfielder Abby Baldwin (Florence, Mass./Northampton), sophomore defender Chelsea Braz (Coventry, Conn./East Catholic), senior midfielder Liz Delorme (Florence, Mass./Bellingham), sophomore defender Mirei Golding-Powers (San Francisco, Calif./San Francisco University HS), senior midfielder and captain Mirjam Keochakian (Hamburg, Germany/Deerfield Academy), first year forward Kass Lawrence (Holyoke, Mass./Holyoke), first year midfielder Mal Leighton (Poland, Maine/Cheverus), sophomore defender Christina Lively (Rowe, Mass./Mohawk Trail Regional), junior midfielder Lia Messersmith (Asheville, N.C./Asheville), sophomore goalie Maddie Miller (Marblehead, Mass./Marblehead), senior midfielder and captain Colby Newsham (Harvard, Mass./Bromfield School), Newsham, first year defender Leah Pendl-Robinson (Branford, Conn./Branford), junior defender and captain Micaela Pierce (Newton, Mass./Beaver Country Day School), senior midfielder Kristina Ramsden (Florence, Mass./Northampton), first year midfielder Margaret Robb (Summit, N.J./Summit), first year Madi Stover (Topsham, Maine/Mount Ararat), junior goalie Morgan Turner (Chester, N.J./West Morris Mendham) and first year goalie Emilie Warren (North Reading, Mass./North Reading).

The Lyons' 20 selections tied for sixth-most among the Division III school honored. Williams led the way with 23 selections, followed by Amherst and Scranton with 22 and Haverford, Johns Hopkins and Misericordia each garnering 21 to round out the top five. Overall, 1,746 student-athletes from 147 schools were honored on the National Academic Squad.

Keochakian, Ramsden, Newsham and Newsham marked their fourth straight appearance on the National Academic Squad. Earning the honor for the third straight year was Messersmith, Pierce and Turner, while Braz, Delorme and Miller have all been recognized twice. Fifteen student-athletes recognized to the National squad, had a grade point average higher than 3.50.

This year's NFHCA Division III top-five teams were Swarthmore College (3.76), Williams College (3.69) Amherst College (3.65). Haverford College (3.64) and Springfield College (3.63) rounded out the top-five.

Led by 21st-year head coach Andy Whitcomb, the Lyons went 9-10 with a 4-4 record in the NEWMAC. The squad finished sixth in the conference standings, falling 2-1 in overtime at third-seeded Smith in the opening round. It marked the Lyons 20th-straight appearance in the conference tournament.

Three student-athletes capped the season in double-digits for points, while two were named NEWMAC All-Conference. Additionally, three were named to the Longstreth/NFHCA New England East Region Teams, including Colby Newsham as a First Team honoree.

To be recognized for National Academic Team Award honors, a squad must have achieved a team GPA of 3.3 or higher during the Fall Semester of the 2018 academic year. Those named to the National Academic Squad, must have achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher through the Fall of 2018.