Mount Holyoke has one of the oldest intercollegiate basketball programs for women in the country. Players entering the program join a hard-working, committed and caring group of scholar-athletes who are striving to become one of the top Division III basketball teams in New England.
The Lyons enter a new era in 2018-19 as Jackie Ward takes over as the 12th head coach in program history. She leads a program that belongs to the New England Women's and Men's Athletics Conference (NEWMAC), which includes schools such as Babson College, Springfield College and Clark University. Other opponents include NESCAC rivals Amherst College and Wesleyan University, as well as Seven Sisters schools such as Smith College and Wellesley College. The schedule is very competitive. Each year, the winner of the NEWMAC Tournament Championship receives an automatic bid to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship.
In 2006-07, Mount Holyoke captured the NEWMAC Tournament Championship for the first time in school history. The Lyons advanced to their first ever NCAA Division III National Tournament and finished the year with a record of 21-8 (10-3 NEWMAC). Head coach Michelle Scecina was named NEWMAC Coach of the Year, while Angela Astuccio '07 received Conference Player of the Year honors. One season earlier, Mount Holyoke took home the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) New England Championship.
The regular season runs from mid-October through late February or early March. Practices are rigorous, with an emphasis on fundamentals. Coach Scecina designs each practice to help players develop and improve individual skills and helps create team cohesiveness through intense defense and a high energy, fast breaking offense.
A Mount Holyoke athlete is driven to excel in the athletic arena as well as the classroom and laboratory. The discipline, sense of accomplishment and competitive edge that you bring to your sport resonate through every channel of your intellectual life.
The desire to achieve -- it's all part of the mind-body connection.