DURHAM, N.H. -- Robin Balducci, the head coach of the University of New Hampshire field hockey team, announced Thursday that five recruits have signed a national letter of intent to join the program in 2001.
The list of the incoming UNH student-athletes is: Heidi Anderson (Hampton Falls, N.H.), Lauren Bruce (Amherst, N.Y.), Christine Buckley (Walpole, Mass.), Jenn Harrison (Hanover, Mass.) and Jen Martha (Cheshire, Conn.).
"This incoming freshman class will rank amount one of the most talented in my career here at UNH," said Balducci, who was named America East Coach of the Year in 2000 and 1998. "This class is well-balanced positionally. We are looking forward to these athletes making an immediate impact on our program."
Anderson, a two-sport athlete at Winnacunnet High School, was named to the All-State and Class L All-Star teams in her senior. Other honors included USFHA/STX Northeast All-American, Boston Globe All-Star Team,Foster's Daily Democrat Player of the Year, Portsmouth Herald Player of the Year and U.S. Field Hockey Player of the Week. Anderson served as captain in both field hockey and indoor track.
Bruce, who comes to Durham from Amherst High School, garnered Regional All-America honors, as well as All-State, All-Western New York, ECIC First Team and team MVP. The team captain, Bruce broke the school record for career points with 59 goals and 51 assists. She is expected to play at back or midfield at New Hampshire.
Buckley carries an impressive resume to New Hampshire from Walpole High School, where she was a four-year letterwinner in both field hockey and lacrosse as a goalie. In 87 career field hockey games, Buckley recorded 66 shutouts - a national record - as Walpole won the MIAA state title in 1998 and 1999 and was runner-up in 2000. Buckley, the captain and team MVP in 2000, has been involved in the National Futures program since 1998 and was selected to the '98 AAU Junior Olympics. She was named a Regional All-American, Bay State League All-Star and Boston Herald All-Scholastic Team in both 2000 and 1999. Buckley was also selected Boston Globe Player of the Year in 2000.
Harrison, a midfielder, lettered in field hockey, ice hockey and lacrosse at Thayer Academy. She recorded 13 goals and four assists to lead the field hockey team to the 2000 NEPSAC (New England Private Schools) Class B championship; she netted the game-winning goal in both the semifinal and final game. A Northeast Regional All-American, Harrison competed in the National Field Hockey Festival, National Futures Tournament and Bay State Games in 2000. Other awards include All-ISL First Team (2000, 1999), team MVP (2000, 1999) and Patriot Ledger All-Scholastic Team.
Martha captained Cheshire High School to the Connecticut Class L championship this season. Her accolades include state finals MVP, All-Area MVP and team MVP. In both 2000 and 1999, Martha was named to the All-State, All-League and All-Area teams, as well as to the Hartford Courant All-Connecticut Team. She participated in the Futures National Tournament in 1999 and 2000 and was a member of the 1999 Junior Olympics. Martha will see action as a back or midfielder.
These six recruits join a UNH program that won the 2000 America East regular-season title and advanced to the NCAA championships for the second time in three years. The Wildcats were defeated by defending national champion Maryland in the first round to end the year at 14-8.