FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 10, 2015
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – New Haven track & field standout Ivy Watts and Bentley field hockey star Gina Lirange have been chosen as the co-winners of the 2014-15 Northeast-10 Conference Woman of the Year Award. The two were honored with the award, which is voted on by a panel of administrators from each NE-10 institution, last Monday night at the conference's annual awards banquet.
Both Lirange and Watts will now move on to be considered for the NCAA Woman of the Year, which is scheduled to be announced in October.
Watts’ acceptance speech from the Northeast-10 Banquet:
Watts recently graduated from the University of New Haven with a 3.98 GPA in psychology. She received the 2014-15 Female Distinguished Scholar Athlete Award in March from the New Haven faculty.
A sprinter for the Chargers’ indoor and outdoor women’s track & field teams, Watts has regularly aided a number of community service projects. She holds or is a part of five program records on the track and earned All-America honors in the 4x400-meter relay during the 14-15 indoor season.
Lirange’s acceptance speech from the Northeast-10 Banquet:
Lirange, whose four years at Bentley culminated with her graduating Summa Cum Laude on May 16, excelled in the classroom and was active in community service in addition to earning All-America honors on the field. She earned a 3.87 grade point average as an accountancy major, making the President's List each of her first seven semesters.
Lirange was the Falcons’ leading scorer the last two seasons, giving the team double figure goals both years. The former Bentley Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) President was accorded second-team Division II All-America honors by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association last fall and twice received All-America recognition from Synapse Sports.
Lirange, Watts and Man of the Year Kyle Thomas during the Northeast-10 banquet's question and answer session with Jacob VanRyn:
Ivy Watts Personal Statement
“I believe that our daily experiences are truly what mold us into the people that we become. I entered college unsure of myself and afraid to take risks, but I can truly say that my experiences over the four years through being a student, an athlete, and an active person in the community, have made me a more confident person. I have learned the true meaning of time-management, the importance of taking chances, and what it means to work hard. I have learned that with hard work, anything is possible, and I can proudly say that I have a cumulative GPA of 3.97 from that hard work. I have learned passion and dedication from seeing the positive results after spending countless hours working hard at practice or on an assignment. As easy as it may have seemed to quit, I continued to work hard every day in order to accomplish my goals. I often felt confused and defeated, but I learned how important it was to overcome hardships and to continue to be the best version of me. My experiences have allowed me to grow as a person and ultimately helped me to find myself.”
Gina Lirange Personal Statement
“For the past four years at Bentley University, I have been incredibly fortunate to participate on campus as a student-athlete. The field hockey team, an extremely involved group of young women, certainly kept me busy with the sport, but also granted me the opportunity and taught me the value of giving back to the community. Through my team’s connection, I was able to work with the Team Impact organization and lead in the Student Athlete Advisory Committee. Working with our Team Impact player, Sasha, we were able to positively influence the life of a young girl who faces a chronic illness every day. SAAC frequently organizes events to benefit the local community and takes part in fundraisers that benefit health causes. Seeing the difference that even a small group of individuals can make has truly shown me the value of leadership and community involvement. Furthermore, the ability to take a lead role in making positive contributions for those who face tough circumstances is not only an amazing and rewarding feeling, but encourages me to take the experiences and lessons I have gained at Bentley and move forward with a community-oriented mindset in my life after school.”
Additional information for this release provided by the sports information/athletic communications staffs at Bentley and New Haven.
ABOUT THE NORTHEAST-10
The Northeast-10 Conference is an association of 15 NCAA Division II colleges and universities located in New England and New York that is committed to supporting balanced academic and athletic opportunities for more than 6,500 student-athletes.
Each year, 4,500 of those student-athletes compete in conference championships in 24 sports, making the NE-10 the largest DII conference in the country in terms of sport sponsorship. Leading the way in the classroom, on the field and within the community, the Northeast-10 is proud of its comprehensive program and the experience it provides student-athletes.