DURHAM, N.H.-- The University of New Hampshire women's lacrosse program honored eight student-athletes, as well as the Class of 2005, at the team's annual banquet that was held May 13 in the Squamscott Room at Holloway Commons on the UNH campus.
The Academic Achievement Award, which distinguishes the student-athlete who has excelled in the classroom, was presented to senior defenders Renee Nemmers (Englewood, Colo.) and Lauren Zerbinopoulos (Kennebunk, Maine). Both Nemmers, an English major, and Zerbinopoulos, whose course of study is business administration: marketing, started all 19 games for the Wildcats this season. Zerbinopoulos earned America East All-Conference Second Team honors this season, and Nemmers received First Team honors in both 2004 and 2003.
Senior attack Jess Burnap (New Canaan, Conn.) was the recipient of the Coaches' Award in recognition of her tireless efforts and selfless giving to the team without hesitation that embodies the spirit of UNH women's lacrosse. Burnap, a tri-captain named to the All-Conference First Team for the third consecutive season, recorded 41 goals and a career-high 17 assists for a total of 58 points to rank second on the team in both assists and points as well as third in goals; she was also second in draw controls.
Katie Leland (Timonium, Md.) was named the Offensive MVP as she led the 'Cats in goals (51), assists (21) and points (72), as well as game-winning goals (seven). The junior attack recorded a point in 18 of 19 games with 14 multiple-point games, including 13 multiple-goal efforts. Leland broke UNH's single game goals record with nine vs. UMBC on April 11 and became just the third Wildcat to record double digits in points with 11.
Cristina Covucci (Concord, Mass.) received the Defensive MVP award. The sophomore midfielder is currently No. 6 in the nation in caused turnovers with 47 in 19 games. She led UNH in that statistic as well as ground balls (54), and she ranked third in draw controls (40). Covucci also contributed to the offense with 10 goals and 10 assists.
Moira Talbot (Marblehead, Mass.), an attack, led the Wildcat freshman class in goals (15), assists (three), points (18) and ground balls (23) and was honored as Rookie of the Year. Talbot, an America East All-Rookie Team honoree, was in the starting lineup for 16 of the 18 games in which she played and ranked second in shooting percentage among the seven 'Cats who recorded double digits in goals.
Two other players were recognized for their efforts off the field, as seniors Jill Albee (Pembroke, N.H.) and Laura Dosdall (Wellesley, Mass.) were co-recipients of the Strength and Conditioning Award for their performance and dedication with regards to weight lifting and conditioning.
UNH head coach Sandy Bridgeman also gave special recognition to the six-member Class of 2005 -- Albee, Burnap, Dosdall, Sarah Hutchinson (Portland, Maine), Nemmers and Zerbinopoulos -- which led the 'Cats to the America East championship game every year and recorded 43 victories, the second-highest total by any UNH class, in four years.