Nine Student-Athletes Receive Awards at Women's Lax Annual Team Banquet

LAURA PUCCIA, ILANA COHEN, KATE KEAGINS, CASEY DOYLE,
KATHLEEN O'KEEFE, JAMIE DePETRIS, KATE GUNTS and MEGHAN BRIDGES

DURHAM, N.H. – A total of nine student-athletes received 11 awards at the University of New Hampshire women's lacrosse team banquet that was held Sunday at Huddleston Hall Ballroom. The program also paid tribute to the four-member senior class.

Senior midfielder and captain Kate Keagins (Bay Shore, N.Y.) was feted with both the MVP and Alley Cat of the Year Award, which is presented in recognition of outstanding hard work, hustle and competitiveness. Keagins, who was named to the America East All-Conference First Team earlier this month, led UNH in ground balls, draw controls and caused turnovers; she also ranked second in goals (29 – personal best), points (38) and shots (63), as well as fourth in shooting percentage (.460). Keagins is ranked 13th nationally – in caused turnovers per game.

Keagins started 15 of 16 games and recorded a point in all but the last game of the season with 12 multiple-point efforts, which included seven multiple-goal games. She recorded at least one ground ball every game (nine multiple-GB games), a ground ball in 14 of 16 (nine multi-GBs) and a CTO in all but two games (12 multi-CTOs).

Junior defender and captain Casey Doyle (Ivyland, Pa.) was named Defensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive year; she was also presented the 2012 Roscoe of the Year Award in recognition of outstanding dedication, determination and drive during practice. Doyle, who was one of two Wildcats to start all 16 games, recorded 17 ground balls, 10 caused turnovers and one draw control to rank fourth on the team in caused turnovers and fifth in ground balls. Doyle's season highlights included a four ground ball, two caused turnover effort at Columbia University (April 18); the four GB matched a personal best, and the two CTO equaled her season high.

Laura Puccia (Fairport, N.Y.) also received two awards – Rookie of the Year and Attacker of the Year; earlier this month, she was an America East All-Rookie Team selection. Puccia, who played in all 16 games with 15 starts, was New Hampshire's leader in goals (34), points (41) and shots (65). She is the first UNH freshman to record 30-plus goals and 40-plus points since 2006 (Sarah von Bargen), and Puccia is the first rookie to lead the Wildcats in goals or points since 1988 (Liz Brickley). Puccia also ranked second in draw controls and shooting percentage (.523) as well as fifth in assists.

Puccia ended the year with a 10-game goal-scoring streak and she scored a goal in 15 of 16 games overall with nine multiple-goal efforts as part of 10 multiple-point performances.

Senior captain Ilana Cohen (Andover, Mass.) was named Midfielder of the Year; in previous years, Cohen was the recipient of the MVP (2011), Roscoe Award (2010) and Rookie of the Year (2009). Cohen, a 2012 All-Conference Second Team honoree, was the only 'Cat Cat to record double digits in goals (16), assists (20), ground balls (23), draw controls (13) and caused turnovers (17). She led the Wildcats in assists; she also ranked second in caused turnovers, third in points, ground balls and shots as well as fourth in draw controls and fifth in goal.

Cohen, the other Wildcat to start every game, recorded a point in 13 of 16 games with 12 multiple-point efforts, which included seven multiple-goal games and six multiple-assist performances. She tallied a ground ball in 14 of 16 games and a caused turnover in 11 contests.

Sophomore defender Jamie DePetris (Radnor, Pa.) was honored with the Coaches' Award, which is presented in recognition of a player who embodies the spirit of UNH women's lacrosse with tireless effort and selfless giving to the team without hesitation. DePetris played in all 16 games and was in the starting lineup seven times. Her statistics included 10 ground balls, five caused turnovers and one draw control. She was a 2012 America East All-Academic Team honoree.

Sophomore attacker Meghan Bridges (Sandy Hook, Conn.) was named Most Improved Player. Bridges played in 13 games with nine starts and she totaled six points on five goals and an assist. She recorded two-point efforts against two nationally-ranked opponents with two goals vs. Dartmouth College and a one-goal, one-assist performance at Stanford.

Brooke McGillis (Berwyn, Pa.) and Kathleen O'Keefe (Chatham, N.J.) were co-recipients of the BAMF (Bright and Motivated Female) of the Year Award.

McGillis played in all 16 games with 15 starts as a freshman defender. She tallied 22 ground balls, 11 caused turnovers and seven draw controls to rank third on the team in CTO and fourth in GB. McGillis' season highlights included six ground balls and four caused turnovers at nationally-ranked Stanford University (March 11); both of those totals tied the highest mark by a 'Cat this season. She also recorded impressive numbers against nationally-ranked Vanderbilt University (March 28) with three GB and three CTO.

O'Keefe, a junior goalkeeper, played in 10 games and recorded more starts (seven) and minutes (416:56) than any other UNH goalie. She matched her personal best of 14 saves to backbone New Hampshire to a 12-11 upset of nationally-ranked Vanderbilt. O'Keefe followed that with an 11-save effort at Vermont that led to her selection as UNH's America East Player of the Game.

Senior goalkeeper Kate Gunts (Wilton, Conn.) was presented the Strength & Conditioning award, which recognizes tremendous work ethic in the weight room. It translated into success on the field for Gunts, who went 3-1 with a 10.21 GAA and .444 save percentage – both of which were team bests – in six games played.

The program also gave special recognition to its senior class of Cohen, Gunts, Keagins and Erin Levesque (Duxbury, Mass.). Gunts, a three-time selection to the America East Commissioner's Honor Roll, compiled an impressive record of 20-9 with a 9.26 GAA in 42 career games (28 starts); the 20 wins is tied for fifth on the program's list of all-time leaders. Levesque, who played midfield, attack and defense in her four years as a Wildcat, recorded 35 ground balls, 15 draw controls and 11 caused turnovers in 51 career games. She was named to the America East Academic Honor Roll last season.

Cohen compiled 63 goals and 52 assists for 115 points in 67 career games; the 52 assists ranks eighth on UNH's career leaderboard. She also tallied 83 ground balls, 62 draw controls and 52 caused turnovers. Cohen's career accolades included America East All-Conference First Team (2011), Second Team (2010, 2012) and All-Rookie Team (2009); she was also a three-time selection to the league's Academic Honor Roll.

Keagins amassed 93 goals and 40 assists for 133 points in 68 career games. She also surpassed the century mark in both ground balls (112) and draw controls (105), and fell just short of that benchmark in caused turnovers (97). Keagins' collegiate accolades included All-Conference First Team (2010, 2012) and All-Rookie Team (2009) as well as 2012 America East Fans' Choice Player of the Year.

 

2012 UNH Women's Lacrosse Team Awards

MVP: Kate Keagins

Attacker of the Year: Laura Puccia

Midfielder of the Year: Ilana Cohen

Defender of the Year: Casey Doyle

Rookie of the Year: Laura Puccia

Roscoe Award: Casey Doyle

Coaches' Award: Jamie DePetris

Most Improved Player: Meghan Bridges

BAMF of the Year Award: Brooke McGillis and Kathleen O'Keefe

Alley Cat of the Year Award: Kate Keagins

Strength & Conditioning Award: Kate Gunts

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