STANDISH, Maine – The 2019 Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) field hockey postseason honors have been announced and eight members of the Saint Joseph's College program have earned accolades.
Headlining the list for the Monks are Head Coach Rupert Lewis, who has been selected as the GNAC Coach of the Year for the third time in the last four years, and sophomore forward Emma Rutledge (Alfred, Maine), who has been named as the GNAC Offensive Player of the Year.
Rutledge is joined on the First Team by senior midfielder Libby Pomerleau (Limerick, Maine) and junior defender Alexandra Belaire (Greene, Maine) while freshman forward Alexa Gutowski (Conway, N.H.), senior midfielder Maddy Beaulieu (West Gardiner, Maine), senior defender Kylee Veilleux (Sabattus, Maine), and junior goalkeeper Alexandria Simpson (Pascoag, R.I.) are listed on the Second Team.
As the top seed in the GNAC Tournament, Saint Josephs' toppled #2 Lasell College by a 4-0 score in the conference championship on Saturday and, with the victory, claim the GNAC's automatic NCAA Tournament qualifier. In the first round of the national tournament, the Monks will play at Babson College on Wednesday at 2:00 PM.
Lewis garners GNAC Coach of the Year honors for the third time in the last four years after leading the Monks to their fourth-consecutive conference championship. Heading into the NCAA Tournament, Saint Joseph's is 18-3, including an 8-0 mark in conference play, and has outscored opponents by a collective 62-21 margin. The 4-0 win over Lasell in the GNAC Championship extended the Monks' winning streak versus conference opponents to 23 games. The team's last loss to a GNAC foe was a 2-1 setback at the hands of the Lasers on October 7th, 2017.
The winningest coach in program history, Lewis owns a 193-92 (.677) record over 15 seasons.
Rutledge is selected as the GNAC Offensive Player of the Year and garners First Team All-Conference honors after scoring 12 goals – including four game-winners - with eight assists for 32 total points as a sophomore. She is tied for the GNAC lead in game-winning goals and ranks third in goals and shots (68) and fourth in assists and points. In 42 career games, Rutledge has netted 30 goals – including seven clinchers – with 23 assists for 83 total points.
Pomerleau claims First Team All-Conference honors for the fourth-consecutive season after scoring seven goals with five assists for 19 points this fall. The senior captain, who changed positions from forward to midfielder as a senior, is the Monks' all-time leader in goals (65), points (156) and game-winning goals (22). She was selected as the 2016 GNAC Rookie of the Year and earned GNAC Offensive Player of the Year accolades following each of the last two seasons.
Belaire garners All-Conference honors for the first time after racking up eight goals and 12 assists for 28 points during her junior season. She leads the GNAC in assists and is tied for the conference lead with four game-winners and, for her career, has scored 22 goals – including seven clinchers - with 26 assists for 70 points in 61 games over three NCAA seasons.
Gutowski collects Second Team All-GNAC honors after enjoying an outstanding freshman season with nine goals for 18 total points in 16 contests. She is ranked second among all conference rookies in goals and tied for second – with teammate Sophia Jacques (Peru, Maine) - among first-year players in points.
Beaulieu earns All-Conference accolades for the second time in her career after posting three goals and five assists for 11 total points during her senior season. The four-year starter, who was selected as a First Team All-GNAC honoree following her freshman campaign, has played and started in all 84 of the Monks' games during her four years and has netted eight goals with 23 assists for a total of 39 points in her career.
Veilleux takes home Second Team All-Conference honors for the second-consecutive season after turning in another stellar defensive campaign for the Monks. An athletic defender with a strong field hockey IQ, Veilleux has played in 57 career games with a goal and an assist in three seasons at Saint Joseph's.
Simpson claims her first All-GNAC award after recording an excellent season as a first-year starter in the cage. In 21 games, the junior keeper posted a 17-3 record with a 1.01 goals against average and six shutouts while making 68 saves with 19 goals allowed in 1,127 minutes for a solid .782 save percentage. She leads the conference in games, goals against average and shutouts and is ranked third in minutes and fewest goals allowed.