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PSC sweeps top LEC annual honors

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Plymouth State College, which captured its second consecutive Little East Conference women's lacrosse regular season and tournament championships, dominated the 2003 LEC All-Star Team and award winners which were announced Monday.

Juniors Katie Sheridan (West Sayville, N.Y.) and Carmen Villanueva (East Schodack, N.Y.) received the conference's top awards by being named LEC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year, respectively. It was the second straight year Sheridan has received the top offensive honor. Freshman Bethany Brown (Norwich, Conn.) was selected LEC Rookie of the Year, and Panther coach Wynne Lobel was voted by her peers as LEC Coach of the Year for the second straight season.

Five Panther players were selected to the All-LEC First Team - Brown at attack, Sheridan and junior Michelle Norton (Sandwich, Mass.) at midfield, senior Beth Dooly (Goffstown, N.H.) at defense, and Villanueva at goalkeeper. Two other Panthers were All-LEC Second Team picks - senior Julie Shields (Whitby, Ont.) at midfield, and freshman Meghan O'Neil (Scituate, Mass.) at defense.

Sheridan, who was selected the Most Outstanding Player in the LEC Tournament for the second straight year, leads the conference and is among the NCAA Division III leaders in scoring (62 goals, 20 assists, 82 points). She set the PSC single-game record with 10 goals in Sunday's LEC title game, and is within striking distance of the PSC season scoring record. Sheridan also owns the PSC career goal scoring mark (169) and she has tied the Panther career points record (226).

Villanueva played every minute in the Panther goal, and posted a conference-leading 6.68 goals against average and .663 saves percentage. She ranks among the NCAA Division III leaders in both categories. Villanueva was the LEC Defensive Player of the Week twice this spring, and she posted a season-high 20 saves on three occasions.

Brown enjoyed an outstanding freshman season for the Panthers, finishing second on the team in scoring with 40 goals, 12 assists and 52 points. She ranked fifth in the conference in points and sixth in goals. Brown collected four of her 40 goals for PSC in the LEC Championship game

Norton and Shields, the Panther co-captains, joined Sheridan to give PSC one of the strongest midfield contingents in New England. Norton was third on the team in scoring with 20 goals, 19 assists and 39 points, while Shields is a strong all-around player who finished with 10 goals and two assists. Both were repeat selections on the All-LEC Team.

Dooly and O'Neil were first-time picks on the All-LEC Team. They teamed with Villanueva to produce one of the top defensive teams in Division III, allowing only 6.79 goals per game.

PSC, 11-3 overall, is continuing its season this week as the top seed in the ECAC New England Division III Tournament.

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