The North Atlantic Conference and North Eastern Athletic Conference have entered into a partnership by way of extending associate memberships in selected sports.
The NEAC will gain associate members in baseball and women’s tennis, while the NAC will accept members for men’s tennis and women’s lacrosse.
Independently, neither conference would have been able to offer NCAA championship access via an automatic qualifier in the sports and the partnership makes this possible.
The University of Maine-Farmington, a member of the NAC, offers baseball and women’s lacrosse as varsity sports.
In baseball, NAC members University of Maine-Farmington, Castleton State, Husson, Lyndon State and Thomas will join the NEAC as associate members. Divisional play will begin in 2010. Each division will hold a championship and the division champs will meet for a three-game series to determine the conference champion. The NEAC will maintain the automatic qualifier it currently holds to the NCAA Division III championship.
UM-Farmington, Green Mountain, Husson and Thomas are the initial members of NAC women’s lacrosse. Beginning in 2010, the NAC will begin a two-year waiting period to qualify for an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III championship. Castleton is expected to move its women’s lacrosse team to the NAC, coinciding with the automatic qualifier opportunity.
NEAC members Cazenovia, College of St. Elizabeth, Keuka, Penn State-Abington, Wells and Wilson will join the NAC as associate members in women’s lacrosse. Medaille, a NEAC associate member, will join the NAC as well. Divisional play will begin in 2010. Each division will hold a championship and the two divisional champions will meet for a conference championship game.
A similar divisional structure will begin for men’s and women’s tennis in 2010.
NESCAC teams to support cause
Colby College in Waterville and the other women’s basketball teams in the New England Small College Athletic Conference are joining forces to promote breast cancer awareness.
Players from Colby, Bowdoin and Bates, along with their conference counterparts, will wear NESCAC “Pink Zone” T-shirts during warmups for Saturday’s games around the league. The effort supports the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s Kay Yow Foundation, which raises awareness about breast cancer.
“This is a very important cause and one that impacts all of us,” event organizer Lori Gear McBride, the Colby coach, said in a press release. “As the conference liaison to the WBCA, I thought this was a great way to unify our efforts and send a strong message of solidarity and the response from fellow coaches has been outstanding.”
The T-shirts were designed by Dan Levy of 609design.com and display each school’s athletic logo embedded in the pink ribbon that represents breast cancer awareness. The shirts also will be sold as a fundraiser at the games, with proceeds going to the Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund.
Yow, the former coach at North Carolina State, died of breast cancer on Jan. 24 after an 11-year fight.
For more information, contact McBride at 207-859-4949 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Artesani wins twice for USM
Emily Artesani of the University of Southern Maine won two events during the USM Coed Invitational held recently on the Gorham campus.
The junior from Orono took first place in the 55-meter dash with a time of 7.58 seconds and also won the 200 meters with a clocking of 26.75 seconds.
Artesani’s times were good enough to qualify her for the New England Division III Championships Feb. 21 at Bowdoin College in Brunswick. Her 200 time also earned her a spot in the ECAC Championships in March.