Field Hockey Wraps Up MAAC Championship Season in NCAA Tournament
A Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Championship, a trip to the NCAA postseason and three MAAC major award winners highlighted a landmark 2015 campaign for the Fairfield field hockey program. The Stags wrapped up their season on Wednesday with a loss at No. 15 nationally-ranked Boston University in an NCAA Championship Play-In Game.
Led by Head Coach Jackie Kane ’87, Fairfield reached its first NCAA postseason since 2001 after surging to a MAAC Championship as the tournament’s fourth-seeded team. The Stags defeated top seed and host Monmouth, 2-1, in the semifinals and shutout in-state rival Quinnipiac, 2-0, in last Sunday’s MAAC Championship Game. Fairfield is a first-year member of the MAAC after competing in the America East Conference from 2007-2014.
Erin Buckley ’18 was named the MVP of the Championship, helming a defense that ceded just one goal to the top two teams in the MAAC regular season. She was joined on the All-Championship Team by goalkeeper Caitlin Bennett ’17 as well as Ann Burgoyne ’17 and Julie de Paeuw ’17, both of whom scored goals in the postseason.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the Stags were well-represented on the 2015 All-MAAC teams, including three major award winners. de Paeuw was tabbed as the MAAC Player of the Year and Burgoyne earned MAAC Offensive Player of the Year laurels in addition to First Team All-MAAC laurels.
2015 MAAC Rookie of the Year Ruth Smalbraak ’19 highlights a trio of Second Team All-MAAC selections alongside Buckley and Maclaine Matties ’18.
The Stags’ success this season extends beyond the field and into the classroom as six student-athletes earned slots on the MAAC All-Academic Team: Buckley, Burgoyne, Corrine Baliga ’18, Danielle Melchionna ’18, Bridget Miles ’18 and Kaitlyn Taddeo ’16.