DURHAM, N.H. - The University of New Hampshire women's soccer team recently held its banquet and honored its student-athletes from the 2001 season in which the Wildcats advanced to the America East championships for the first time since 1998.
The Players' Award, which is presented to the team member whom the players select as deserving of special honor distinguished by earning the respect of her peers, was presented to seniors Sarah Sargent (Glastonbury, Conn.) and Farrell Swain (West Simsbury, Conn.), both of whom were awarded America East Honorable Mention. Sargent, who finished second on the team in both goals and points, entered the UNH record book this season for scoring the two quickest goals by an individual when she netted goals 43 seconds apart against the University of Hartford. That marked the second consecutive match that the midfielder netted two goals. Swain, who leaves the program with career numbers of 25 points on seven goals and 11 assists, ranked second on the team in assists this season.
The Honor Award, which is bestowed upon the player whom the coaching staff finds to have made significant contributions to the team, went to senior Michelle Thornton (Gloucester, Ont.). Thornton, who redshirted the 2000 season following a season-ending knee injury in 1999, earned America East Second Team honors as the team leader directing the backfield. She also contributed two goals and an assist to the offense. Thornton earned America East First Team accolades in 1997 and 1998.
The Gold Medal Award was presented to seniors Meg Foley (Marlborough, Conn.) and Kristy Hemsley (St. Bruno, Quebec) in recognition of their strength of character, will and commitment to overcome obstacles to attain an optimum performance level and be a positive role model to the team. Both players overcame preseason injuries to make contributions both on and off the field.
The Student-Athlete Award is presented to the women's soccer player who earns the highest grade point average during the fall season, and freshmen Chiara Best (Rose Valley, Pa.) and Katie Sullivan (Worcester, Mass.) shared that honor in the fall 2001 semester. Best, an All-Conference Second Team selection, led the Wildcats in goals (eight), assists (five) and points (21). A two-time Rookie of the Week honoree, Best broke the school's freshman scoring record with her 21 points. Sullivan scored two goals, including the game's only tally in a 1-0 win against Towson, in 2001.
Five seniors - Foley, Hemsley, Sargent, Swain and Thornton - wore the Blue and White of UNH for the final time in 2001.