November 9, 2011

Five Earn Little East Field Hockey Honors

Erica Allan and Eleanor Taylor

Erica Allan and Eleanor Taylor

NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-Five members of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's field hockey team have been honored by the Little East Conference.

Junior forward Eleanor Taylor (Fairhaven, MA/Bishop Stang HS) and junior defender Taryn Cardiel (Moorpark, CA/Moorpark HS) were named first team All-Conference, while junior forward Erica Allan (Amherst, MA/Amherst HS), sophomore midfielder Devon Herlihy (Stratham, NH/Exeter HS) and sophomore defender Victoria Dolce (Jamestown, RI/North Kingstown HS) have been named second team All-Conference.

Taylor led the Corsairs in scoring with 20 goals and five assists for 45 points. Cardiel was third with five goals and six assists for 16 points while playing an integral role on defense. Allan ranked second in scoring with 10 goals and three assists for 23 points, Dolce was fifth with five goals and two assists for 12 points and Herlihy had one goal for two points.

"After a two-year stint as starting left wing and being honored as the 2009 LEC Rookie of the Year and 2010 Player of the Year, Eleanor was asked to play a new role for the Corsairs this season and she was a contributor at the defensive line, the midfield line and the attacking line, interchanging throughout the season," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Nicole Castonguay. "Her strength on the ball and determination to bring this team to a new level is noticeable to players and fans. She is very deserving of this award and I'm glad to see her consistently growing as a player within this program. Her overall game level has continually strengthened and I'm excited to have another full year with her here as a team leader."

"Taryn has been an unsung hero for this team for her first two seasons, going overlooked in the conference ballot until no," Castonguay continued. "She was my starting sweeper since her rookie season and from that time; we have won two LEC championships under her belt. To me, my sweeper role is always considered to be the backbone of the field so Taryn gets a lot of 'coaching pressure' thrown her way. She is tough to beat and she's a player I have truly enjoyed watching compete here at UMD. She reminds me a lot of myself in my days as a sweeper at Connecticut and that's probably another reason I am able to put high expectations on her--because I know what her capabilities are."

"Erica is a hard worker and was recognized several times this season by her teammates for 'putting it all out on the field," said Castonguay."She is quick and feisty and worked hard for 70 minutes straight for every game I can remember this season. She is a force on the forward line and her work ethic has helped her to develop her game inside the circle, and results have shown this season as far as scoring and assists go. I'm happy for Erica--she deserves this honor and I know she will be thrilled to hear about it."

"Devon is only a sophomore and was a huge driving force behind our defensive unit," said Castonguay. "Her speed and ability to 'chase the play down' resulted in several big defensive plays this season. She has the ability to lift the entire team by making the big plays in the backfield, many times, leading to an attacking run for the team. It's great to see our younger talent getting recognized--it shows how much depth we have in our program as far as future seasons go."

"Tory was a starter for me since her very first game as a Corsair in 2010 and her drive, her tackle and her overall stick skills make her one of my most consistent players," Castonguay said. I always know what to expect from Tory and she is able to handle just about any situation with poise. She comes up with big tackles and clears in the field and in the circle she is a fierce man marker-denying several of the opposing team's offensive threats throughout the season."

"As a coach, I am thrilled that these players were recognized," said Castonguay."Each of them has been here with me to win an LEC title and this season was truly 'rebuilding', although as a team, we never called it that. These players have a new drive for the 2012 season and it starts now. These five are just a hand full of my returners who bring talent, heart and soul to this program every day they touch the field. I'm proud to coach this team and there's not another group of student-athletes I would rather spend my coaching days with."

The Corsairs finished 10-10 this season and advanced to the semi-finals of the Little East Conference Tournament.