The History of the Northeast-10 Conference
October 1, 1979
– Seven New England colleges and universities form a new
athletic conference (to be named later) to encompass several
sports. The institutions include American International,
Assumption, Bentley, Bryant, Hartford, Springfield and Stonehill.
The new conference will initially encompass men’s and
women’s basketball, baseball, men’s soccer, softball
and women’s tennis. The colleges selected for the conference
are based on several criteria, including proximity to each other,
sports offered, compatibility of athletic programs as well as the
educational philosophies of the institutions. Al Shields, the
Director of Athletics at Bentley, is also named the first
conference commissioner. The 'founding fathers' of the Northeast-10
began with Shields, Tom Folliard of Stonehill, Leon Drury of Bryant
and Andy Laska of Assumption. The four later convinced Ed Steitz of
Springfield, Gordie McCullough of Hartford and Milt Piepul of
American International to join them.
June 10, 1980 – After a year of planning, New England’s newest athletic conference, the Northeast-7, is officially announced and recognized by the NCAA as an allied member. The conference would apply for automatic qualifying status to NCAA tournament play following a two-year probationary period.
September 16, 1980 – The first Northeast-7 Conference contest takes place when American International visits Assumption in men’s soccer.
December 11, 1980 – The first Northeast-7 basketball game takes place as host Bryant defeats Hartford, 76-69.
March 1981 – The first baseball games in conference history take place. In a doubleheader, Assumption tops Stonehill, 6-4, before Stonehill takes game two the twinbill, 16-6.
June 16, 1981 – The Northeast-8 is born as the conference announces the addition of Saint Anselm College. Saint Anselm’s acceptance is immediate, but the Hawks do not begin conference competition until 1983-84.
December 7, 1981 – Springfield defeats American International in the first Northeast-8 women’s basketball conference game.
April 1982 – Bryant wins the inaugural Northeast-8 golf championship.
April 3, 1983 – Stonehill and Assumption split in a doubleheader in the first ever Northeast-8 softball games.
October 8, 1983 – The first women’s cross country championship race is run, with Springfield besting the five team field with a low of 31 points.
June 12, 1984 – Merrimack College accepts an invitation to join the Northeast-8. Merrimack replaces Hartford, which leaves the conference to join the Division I ranks.
September, 1984 – Springfield captures the first Northeast-8 women’s tennis championship with 28 points.
March 1985 – American International, led by future NBA standout Mario Elie, becomes the first Northeast-10 men’s basketball program to reach the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II national championship tournament. Elie would go on to become a two-time NBA Finals champion throughout an 11-year career.
September 12, 1985 - The sport of women’s soccer debuts as Stonehill shuts out host Saint Anselm, 2-0.
July 1, 1987 – Quinnipiac and Saint Michael’s join the conference. The two additions lead to the changing of the organization's name to the Northeast-10.
January 1989 - Bob Burke, Director of Athletics at American International, is selected to serve as conference commissioner.
March 21, 1994 – The sport of men’s lacrosse debuts as a Northeast-10 sport. Bentley tops Assumption, 15-5.
May 1994 - Merrimack becomes the first Northeast-10 Conference school to win a national championship, as the Lady Warriors softball team downs Humboldt State, 6-2, for the NCAA Division II title.
June 1995 – The Northeast-10 shrinks to nine members when Springfield changes its NCAA status to Division III.
May 2, 1995 - F. Paul Bogan is selected as the first full-time commissioner of the conference. He is the third individual to assume the duties of commissioner at the Northeast-10.
June 1996 – Le Moyne College is accepted to the conference.
September 7, 1996 - The sport of field hockey debuts as Saint Michael’s downs host Assumption, 2-0.
October 14, 1996 – Quinnipiac announces it will shift its programs to NCAA Division I status as a member of the Northeast Conference (NEC).
January 1997 – Pace University is accepted into the Northeast-10 for the 1997-98 academic year, bringing the conference member total to 11.
July 1998 - David R. Brunk is selected as the fourth commissioner in the history of the Northeast-10.
March 25, 1999 - The sport of women’s lacrosse debuts with Bentley downing American International, 13-8, and Saint Michael’s topping Assumption, 16-7.
September 22, 1999 – The Northeast-10 announces it will expand by five institutions beginning with the 2000-01 academic year as Franklin Pierce College, New Hampshire College (now known as Southern New Hampshire University), The University of Massachusetts Lowell, The College of Saint Rose, and Southern Connecticut State University are all accepted as conference members. The expansion makes the Northeast-10 the second largest Division II conference in the nation at the time.
November 5, 1999 - The Northeast-10 website debuts at www.northeast10.org.
September 21, 2000 - The Northeast-10 announces it will offer four more championship sports with the additions of men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field for the 2001-02 academic year. The additions bring the total number of Northeast-10 championships to 19.
January 2001 - The Northeast-10 Conference creates its own football conference beginning with the 2001 season to create its 20th sport.
August 31, 2001 – The first Northeast-10 football game takes place as host Bentley edges Saint Anselm, 27-24.
November 4, 2001 – Bentley becomes the second conference school to win a national title as the Falcons defeat East Stroudsburg, 4-2, in the NCAA Division II field hockey championship game.
May 25, 2002 -
Southern Connecticut’s Kateema Riettie wins the individual
national championship in javelin at the NCAA Track & Field
May 11, 2003 - Stonehill becomes the third Northeast-10 member to be crowned national champion as the Skyhawks defeat Longwood (Va.), 9-8, in the women’s lacrosse national title game.
June 3, 2003 - The Northeast-10 announces it will sponsor men’s and women’s swimming and diving as its 21st and 22nd championship sports for the 2003-04 season.
June 9, 2003 - The Northeast-10 announces it will sponsor men’s ice hockey as its 23rd championship sport beginning in 2003-04. The sport gives the conference 23 championship sports, which is the most of any NCAA Division II conference in the nation.
November 12, 2003 - The first men’s ice hockey game takes place under the Northeast-10 banner as Southern New Hampshire downs Franklin Pierce, 6-2.
May 30, 2004 - Le Moyne wins the men’s lacrosse national championship, 11-10, in overtime over Limestone. It is the first men’s national championship for the Northeast-10 and fourth team title overall.
March 26, 2005 - The Bryant men’s basketball team becomes the first conference school to appear in the national championship game, falling to Virginia Union, 63-58.
May 15, 2005 - Stonehill wins its second national championship in women’s lacrosse, topping West Chester, 16-10, in the title game.
November 13, 2005 - UMass Lowell claims the national championship in field hockey with a 2-1 win over Bloomsburg.
May 2, 2006 - Le Moyne wins its second national championship in men's lacrosse, defeating Dowling, 12-5.
June 5, 2006 - The Northeast-10 celebrates its 25th anniversary and announces its inaugural Hall of Fame class. The inaugural class includes 25 inductees.
March 15, 2007 - Saint Rose's Brandon Birchak wins the national championship in three meter diving.
March 24, 2007 - Southern Connecticut wins its first NCAA Championship in women's basketball, defeating Florida Gulf Coast, 61-45.
May 25, 2007 - UMass Lowell's Nicole Plante wins the national championship in the 10,000-meters with a time of 35:23.49.
May 27, 2007 - In men's lacrosse, Le Moyne wins its second straight NCAA Championship and third in four years by defeating Mercyhurst, 6-5.
October 19, 2007 - Bryant University announces it will leave the conference at the conclusion of the 2007-08 academic year to join the Division I ranks as a member of the Northeast Conference (NEC).
December 2, 2007 - The Franklin Pierce men's soccer team claims the national championship with a 1-0 victory over Lincoln Memorial University. It marks the first men's soccer national championship in the history of the Northeast-10.
March 15, 2008 - Le Moyne's Alison Lesher and Southern Connecticut's Kristen Frost become the first student-athletes in Northeast-10 history to capture individual national championships in the sport of swimming. Lesher wins the 200-yard butterfly, while Frost claims four national championships in the 1650, 1000, 500, and 200-yard freestyle events.
May 1, 2008 - Julie Ruppert is named the fifth full-time commissioner in the history of the Northeast-10 Conference. Ruppert's hiring makes her the first female commissioner in NCAA Division II history.
July 2008 - The University of New Haven joins the Northeast-10 Conference, giving it 15 members.
July 2009 - Adelphi University joins the Northeast-10 Conference, bringing the league's total to 16 member institutions.
May 23, 2010 - The Adelphi women's lacrosse team defeats West Chester to claim their second consecutive national title in the sport.
May 30, 2010 - UMass Lowell's Jacqui Barrett wins the national title in the shot put with a toss of 50' 8.25".
December 4, 2010 - UMass Lowell's field hockey team wins the national championship with a 1-0 victory over Shippensburg to cap a perfect 24-0 season at the NCAA Division II Fall Festival in Louisville, Kentucky.
March 9, 2011 - Southern Connecticut sophomore Amanda Thomas wins the national championship in San Antonio, Texas in the 200-yard individual medley.
March 11, 2011 - Stonehill's Corey Thomas wins the national championship in the high jump in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
March 12, 2011 - New Haven's Shannon Gagne wins three national championships at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Gagne wins the 200 meter, 400 meter, and the long jump, and becomes just the second student-athlete in the history of the Indoor Track and Field Championships to win three national titles.
May 22, 2011 - Adelphi's women's lacrosse team wins its third consecutive national championship, defeating Limestone, 17-4, in Garden City, N.Y.
November 26, 2011 - New Haven defeats Kutztown 44-37 in a second-round matchup of the NCAA Football Championship to advance to the National Quarterfinals, matching the furthest an NE-10 team had ever advanced.
December 3, 2011 - The Saint Rose women's soccer team wins the national championship with a 2-1 victory over Grand Valley State in Pensacola, Florida.
March 11, 2012 - American International's Dominic Smith and Southern Connecticut's Nick Lebron win national championships at the at the 2012 NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships in Minnesota. Smith prevaied in the 400-meter dash, while Lebron claimed the heptathlon crown.
March 14, 2012 - Southern Connecticut junior Amanda Thomas wins the national title in the 200-yard individual medley in Mansfield, Texas.
March 15, 2012 - Thomas claims her second national championship in as many nights, this time winning the 400-yard individual medley at the NCAA Championships. She was named the 2012 NCAA Division II Women’s Swimmer of the Meet for her efforts.
October 5, 2012 - The Northeast-10 announces a formal partnership with Team IMPACT, a non-profit organization that helps match children with life-threatening illnesses with collegiate athletic programs.
December 17, 2012 - The conference office announces the addition of LIU Post as an associate member in the sports of football and field hockey, beginning with the 2013-14 academic year.
February 14, 2013 - UMass Lowell announces its reclassification to Division I athletics beginning with the 2013-14 academic year.
March 6, 2013 - Southern Connecticut senior Amanda Thomas wins the national title in the 200-yard IM for the third consecutive year. Thomas was also named NCAA Swimmer of the Meet.
May 26, 2013 - The Le Moyne men's lacrosse team claims the national championship with a thrilling 11-10 victory over Mercyhurst in Philadelphia, Pa.
December 7, 2013 - The Southern New Hampshire men's soccer team wins its second-ever national championship following a 2-1 victory over Carson-Newman in Evans, Ga.
March 14, 2014 - Southern Connecticut junior Raymond Cswerko wins the national title in the men's 200 butterfly at the 2014 NCAA Division II Swimming & Diving Championships in Geneva, Ohio.
March 15, 2014 - For the second time in his career, Southern Connecticut seior Nick Lebron wins the indoor hepathlon individual national title at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships.
March 28, 2014 - The Bentley women's basketball team capped a perfect season with a national championship by defeating West Texas A&M University, 73-65, in Erie, Pa. The season-long No. 1 ranked Falcons overcame a nine-point deficit with five minutes to play.