CASTLETON, Vt. – The coaches and student-athletes of Castleton University's spring sports gathered at Casella Theater Thursday evening, May 3, to celebrate the success of the various programs, including the competitors leading those squads in their achievements.
Cathy Kozlik, Associate Academic Dean, filled in for Castleton President Dr. Karen Scolforo and presented the President's Cup for Academic Excellence to the spring program with the highest team grade point average. The men's tennis team received the trophy with a team GPA of 3.51.
The baseball team started with a trip to California in February and picked up victories over Pomona-Pitzer and defending national champion Cal Lutheran. The Spartans posted a 21-3 record within the North Atlantic Conference to once again earn the right to host the NAC Baseball Tournament, taking place this weekend. Jonathan Lindau received the team MVP award as he provided leadership from behind the plate as the starting catcher while batting .327 with 11 doubles, two triples, two home runs, and 31 RBI.
After four losses against tough competition to start the season, the men's lacrosse team won 10 of its last 13 contests to finish second in the NAC regular season standings at 6-1 and advance to the NAC Tournament championship game for the 15th consecutive year. Senior Josh Gosselin, the team MVP for 2018, was voted First Team All-NAC for the third straight season as a face-off specialist, winning 66.8 percent of his face-offs this season, which is currently 16th in Division III, including 13-of-17 face-off wins during the NAC Tournament semifinal.
Castleton improved as the season went along, winning nine of its last 11 games, including all seven conference matches for the seventh straight season to win the NAC regular season title and host the NAC Tournament championship game this coming Saturday. A big reason for the improvement was the addition of Nadine Downing after she completed alpine ski season, as Downing, the team MVP, collected 17 goals, eight assists, 36 ground balls, 35 draw controls, and 20 caused turnovers in the 12 games she started.
The toughest opponent for the Castleton softball team seemed to be Mother Nature, as games were continually postponed, cancelled, and rescheduled throughout the season. The Spartans battled through those conditions to win eight of their last 11 games, posting a 7-3 record within the NAC to clinch the third seed in this weekend's NAC Softball Tournament in Bangor, Maine. Senior pitcher Taylor Paquette won eight games and pitched 11 complete games for the Spartans, striking out 64 opposing batters on her way to receiving the team MVP award.
The men's tennis team once again posted a winning overall record at 7-6 and qualified for the NAC East Division Tournament. The Spartans were competitive in almost every match, as three of the six losses were by the score of 5-4. Quentin Barthe was named the team MVP after leading the Spartans from the number one position in both singles and doubles, going 9-4 in singles and 8-5 in doubles in 2018.
Men's Outdoor Track and Field
Led by eight top-five finishes at the NAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships, the men's outdoor track and field team finished fourth in the conference. Three members of the team qualified for this weekend's New England Division III Track and Field Championships at MIT, including team MVP Tayler Larmie in the hammer throw. Larmie qualified thanks to a school-record throw of 46.43 meters on April 7 at Fitchburg State.
Women's Outdoor Track and Field
The women's outdoor track and field team won three events and finished in third place as a team at the NAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Team MVP Christiana Carmichael contributed to one of those conference titles as part of the 4x400 meter relay team that won with a school-record time of 4:19.33. Carmichael also finished fifth in the 200-meter dash at the NAC Championships and made significant contributions to the team throughout the season.