September 4, 2015

D-III soccer represented among Top 30 honorees for NCAA Woman of the Year

By Christan Shirk

Top 30 honorees for the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year: Kelsey Graham (Wheaton, Ill.) and Madeline Buckley (William Smith)
Photos: Michael Hudson Photography (l.); Kevin Colton / William Smith Athletics (r.)

Two graduated Division III women’s soccer players are among the Top 30 honorees for the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year award. The selection committee’s announcement yesterday included the names of Madeline Buckley (William Smith) and Kelsey Graham (Wheaton, Ill.). The pair are joined by eight other Division III student-athletes who were selected from the 51 conference and independent honorees representing all 44 Division III conferences. A total of 180 Division III student-athletes were nominated by their schools.

Across all three divisions there were a total of 480 nominees and 147 conference and independent honorees from which the committee selected the top ten from each division. For the 2015 award, nominees were required to have completed their intercollegiate athletic eligibility during the 2014-15 school year and have graduated by the end of the 2015 summer term with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.50. Candidates were graded in the areas of service and leadership, academic achievement, and athletic excellence as well as their personal statement of no more than 200 words.

Later this month nine finalists—three from each division—will be named by the selection committee and forwarded the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics (CWA) who will choose the winner. The Top 30 honorees will be recognized and the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year winner will be announced at the annual awards dinner and ceremony to be held in Indianapolis on Sunday, October 18. Only four Division III student-athletes have won the award in its 24-year history and only once—just last year—has a soccer player from any division received the honor. More information on the NCAA Woman of the Year award can be found below.

Madeline Buckley, forward (William Smith '15)

Photo: Kevin Colton / William Smith Athletics

Madeline Buckley, a forward at William Smith, led the Herons and the Liberty League with 11 goals and 27 points during her senior campaign, netting four game-winning goals, second most in the conference. She helped lead William Smith to their eighth straight Liberty League regular season and tournament titles, going perfect in conference play. A unanimous first team All-Liberty League selection to add to all-conference honors the previous two years, she was named the league's Offensive Performer of the Year. The NSCAA would then bestow first team All-Region and third team All-American honors on Buckley.  She and her classmates finished their William Smith careers with a 73-7-6 four-year record (.884), logging the highest winning percentage by a graduating class and being part of four trips to the NCAA tournament including the 2013 national championship run.

Her excellence in the classroom also garnered Buckley All-Academic conference honors for the third time, culminating in her second CoSIDA Academic All-District selection and NSCAA Scholar All-American second team honors. The Critical Social Studies major graduated with a 3.48 cumulative GPA. Buckley was a three-year member of the William Smith Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and served as the student-representative on the Heron Society Board of Directors. But what is even more commendable is her activism off the field and out of the classroom.  As a senior Buckley was the team representative in William Smith’s partnership with Team IMPACT, a non-profit that works to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening illnesses by matching these courageous kids with college athletic teams and harnessing the power of teamwork. She is an active supporter of the B+ Foundation, an organization which honors the memory of a 14-year old athlete from her hometown of Wilmington, Delaware, and she has been a dedicated volunteer with the college's Geneva Horoes program that helps local middle and high school students with develop team-building and leadership skills. Her excellence and service did not go unnoticed as Buckley was selected the 2015 collegiate recipient of the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup, often regarded as the highest award in college sports. Such an impression she made, William Smith College has established a new award in her honor, the Madeline Buckley Citizenship Award, to be given annually to a William Smith student-athlete who best displays character, teamwork and citizenship.

Kelsey Graham, goalkeeper (Wheaton, Ill. '15)

Photo: Michael Hudson Photography

D3soccer.com 2014 Goalkeeper of the Year, Kelsey Graham, helped Wheaton (Ill.) to a 18-2-2 last year that included a CCIW title and appearance in the NCAA tournament. Graham's incredible .944 save percentage led the nation and resulted in a personal 0.28 GAA that ranked fifth in the nation. At one point Graham went 588 minutes across seven games without conceding a goal. She shutout Washington U. and Illinois Wesleyan, a pair of ranked teams, for 110 minutes in scoreless draws, makig nine saves in each contest.  A four-year starter for the Thunder, she elevated her game as a senior and was rewarded with honors: All-CCIW first team, NSCAA All-Central Region first team, and D3soccer.com All-America first team in addition to the aforementioned Goalkeeper of the Year selection.

Graham also excelled in the classroom, graduating with a 3.64 cumulative GPA and being named to the CCIW Academic All-Conference Team all four years at Wheaton. Additionally, the dual Spanish and Christian Education major earned a Second Team CoSIDA Academic All-District selection. Beyond athletic and academic accomplishments, Graham was also active in ministry and community service. During her time at Wheaton, she served as a discipleship small group leader within the women's soccer team and as a Sunday School teacher and missions department intern in two local churches. She volunteered in the Chicago Eagles' soccer ministry as an assistant coach for the middle-school youth. Graham participated in the college's on-going student-led Honduras Project, travelling to a Honduran village with other students to install a gravity-fed water system  She also volunteered at a mobile food pantry and with Feed My Starving Children, a non-proft organization that packages meals specially formulated for malnourished children around the world.

 


 

NCAA Woman of the Year Award

click image to open full-size

 

Process

  • NCAA member colleges and universities nominate their top graduating female student-athlete (March to mid-May).
  • Conference select up to two women from the nominees to represent the conference (late June).
  • The Woman of the Year selection committee selects the top 30 honorees–10 from each division (early September).
  • The selection committee determines the top three in each division; announces the top nine finalists (late September).
  • The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics votes from among the finalists to determine the NCAA Woman of the Year.
  • The top 30 honorees are honored and the NCAA Woman of the Year winner is announced at the annual awards dinner and ceremony (mid-October).

Eligibility

  • Nominee must have completed intercollegiate eligibility in her primary sport by the end of the 2014-15* competitive season and received her undergraduate degree no later than the summer 2015* term (* - for the 2015 award).
  • Nominee must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.500 (4.000 scale).

Selection Criteria

  • Service and Leadership - maximum 5 pts (28%)
  • Based on the nominee's involvement in campus and community activities and organizations.

  • Academic Achievement - maximum 5 pts (28%)
  • Based on cumulative GPA as follows:
    3.600 - 4.000 5 pts.
    3.300 - 3.599 4 pts.
    3.000 - 3.299 3 pts.
    2.750 - 2.999 2 pts.
    2.500 - 2.749 1 pt.
  • Athletics Excellence - maximum 5 pts (28%)
  • Based on individual honors and team/individual finish as follows:
    Team champion, 1st Team All-American, member of Olympic team,
    or top-three finish in individual sport at NCAA championship
    5 pts.
    All-American other than first team 4 pts.
    All-Region, 1st Team All-Conference, team/individual conference
    champion or multisport letter-winner
    3 pts.
    Varsity letter-winner or all-conference honors other than first team 2 pts.
  • Personal Statement - maximum 3 pts (16%)
  • Based on the nominee’s own description, in 200 words or less, of how her community service and experiences as a scholar, an athlete, and a leader on her campus and in her community have influenced her life and shaped the person she is today.

 


Comments or feedback for the author?  E-mail Christan Shirk.

Wednesday, Sep. 18: All times Eastern
M:
3:00 PM
Finlandia at Coe
M:
3:00 PM
Fisher at Cazenovia
M:
4:00 PM
Clark at Colby-Sawyer
Video Live stats Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
St. Joseph (Conn.) at Becker
Live stats
M:
Postponed
Stevenson at Delaware Valley
M:
4:00 PM
Regent at Ferrum
Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Eastern Connecticut at Mitchell
Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Southern Virginia at Mary Baldwin
Video Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Penn State-Altoona at St. Vincent
Video Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Rowan at Haverford
Video Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Defiance at Alma
Video Live stats
M:
4:00 PM
Lesley at Pine Manor
M:
4:00 PM
Cabrini at Eastern
M:
4:00 PM
Muhlenberg at DeSales
M:
4:00 PM
Centenary (N.J.) at Montclair State
M:
4:00 PM
Pitt-Bradford at Elmira
M:
4:00 PM
William Paterson at York (N.Y.)
M:
4:00 PM
SUNY-Old Westbury at Ramapo
M:
4:00 PM
King's (NY) at Mount St. Vincent
M:
4:00 PM
Dean at Rhode Island College
M:
4:30 PM
Dickinson at Lycoming
M:
4:30 PM
Arcadia at Penn State-Berks
Live stats
M:
4:30 PM
Berea at Covenant
Video Live stats
M:
4:30 PM
Marymount at Wilson
Video Live stats
M:
4:30 PM
Hiram at Heidelberg
Video Live stats
M:
4:30 PM
SUNY Poly at Alfred State
Video Live stats
M:
4:30 PM
Gustavus Adolphus at St. Thomas
Video Live stats
M:
5:00 PM
Waynesburg at Franciscan
Video
M:
5:00 PM
Gwynedd-Mercy at Cairn
M:
5:00 PM
Rosemont at Stockton
M:
5:00 PM
Baruch at Vassar
M:
5:00 PM
Knox at Central
M:
5:00 PM
St. Olaf at Hamline
Video Live stats
M:
5:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Dominican
Video Live stats
M:
5:00 PM
Bethel at Carleton
Video Live stats Audio
M:
5:00 PM
St. John's at Concordia-Moorhead
Video Live stats
M:
5:00 PM
Monmouth at Iowa Wesleyan
Live stats
M:
5:30 PM
St. Norbert at Concordia (Wis.)
Video Live stats
M:
6:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Johnson University Tennessee
M:
6:00 PM
Mid-Atlantic Christ. at Randolph
M:
6:00 PM
Hartwick at Marywood
M:
6:00 PM
Elmhurst at Kalamazoo
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Albertus Magnus at Elms
M:
7:00 PM
New Jersey City at Farmingdale State
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Stevens at Franklin and Marshall
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Susquehanna at Wilkes
M:
7:00 PM
Mary Washington at Catholic
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Lehman at Manhattanville
M:
7:00 PM
Medaille at Fredonia State
M:
7:00 PM
Mount Union at Geneva
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Eastern Nazarene
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Baldwin Wallace at Oberlin
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Mount St. Joseph at Muskingum
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Moravian at Bryn Athyn
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Alfred at Keuka
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Eastern Mennonite at Gallaudet
M:
7:00 PM
Methodist at William Peace
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Washington College at Wesley
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Salem State at Mass-Dartmouth
M:
7:00 PM
Drew at TCNJ
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Rose-Hulman at DePauw
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Neumann at Widener
M:
7:00 PM
Lynchburg at Christopher Newport
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
New York University at SUNY-Maritime
M:
7:00 PM
St. Mary's (Md.) at Swarthmore
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Rochester (Mich.) at Adrian
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Hanover at Ohio Northern
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Immaculata at Rutgers-Camden
M:
7:00 PM
Messiah at York (Pa.)
Video Live stats Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Wooster at Capital
Video
M:
7:00 PM
MIT at Wentworth
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
D'Youville at Buffalo State
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Thomas at St. Joseph's (Maine)
Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Otterbein at Ohio Wesleyan
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Elizabethtown at Alvernia
M:
7:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Gettysburg
M:
7:00 PM
Clarks Summit at Wells
M:
7:00 PM
North Carolina Wesleyan at Barton
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
University of the Ozarks at Hendrix
Video Live stats
M:
7:30 PM
Centre at Transylvania
Video Live stats
M:
7:30 PM
John Carroll at Case Western Reserve
Video Live stats
M:
7:30 PM
La Roche at Westminster (Pa.)
M:
7:30 PM
Kenyon at Marietta
M:
7:45 PM
Amherst at Merchant Marine
Video Live stats
M:
8:00 PM
Bowdoin at Bates
Live stats
M:
8:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at Millikin
M:
8:00 PM
Edgewood at Lawrence
Video
M:
8:00 PM
Carroll at Wisconsin Lutheran
Video
M:
8:00 PM
MacMurray at Illinois College
M:
8:00 PM
Illinois Tech at North Park
M:
8:00 PM
Dubuque at UW-Platteville
Video Live stats
M:
8:00 PM
Rhodes at Christian Bros.
M:
8:30 PM
Augsburg at Macalester
Video Live stats
M:
8:30 PM
Lake Forest at Aurora
Video Live stats
M:
10:00 PM
Pomona-Pitzer at La Verne
Video Live stats
M:
10:00 PM
Caltech at Whittier
Live stats
M:
10:00 PM
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at Cal Lutheran
Video Live stats
M:
10:00 PM
Occidental at Redlands
W:
2:00 PM
Marymount at Mary Baldwin
Video Live stats
W:
3:00 PM
Waynesburg at Franciscan
Video
W:
3:00 PM
King's at Centenary (N.J.)
Live stats
W:
3:30 PM
Framingham State at Dean
Video Live stats
W:
3:30 PM
Concordia (N.Y.) at Staten Island
Video Live stats
W:
3:30 PM
Bowdoin at Babson
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Penn State-Abington at Gwynedd-Mercy
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Gettysburg at York (Pa.)
Video Live stats Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Endicott at Wheaton (Mass.)
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Averett at Washington and Lee
Video Live stats Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Eastern Nazarene at Maine-Farmington
Live stats
W:
Postponed
Pine Manor at NVU-Lyndon
Video
W:
4:00 PM
Heidelberg at Trine
Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Morrisville State at SUNY Delhi
W:
4:00 PM
Emmanuel at Lasell
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
St. Mary's (Ind.) at Manchester
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Hamilton at Utica
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
Virginia Wesleyan at St. Mary's (Md.)
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
FDU-Florham at Manhattanville
W:
4:00 PM
DeSales at Lebanon Valley
W:
4:00 PM
Geneva at Pitt-Greensburg
W:
4:00 PM
SUNY-Purchase at New Jersey City
W:
4:00 PM
Rowan at Arcadia
W:
4:00 PM
Roanoke at Greensboro
Video Live stats
W:
4:00 PM
SUNY Canton at Oswego State
W:
4:00 PM
Skidmore at Clarkson
W:
4:30 PM
Felician at Trinity (D.C.)
W:
4:30 PM
Methodist at Randolph-Macon
Video Live stats
W:
4:30 PM
North Carolina Wesleyan at Mary Washington
Video Live stats
W:
4:30 PM
Sweet Briar at Wilson
W:
4:30 PM
Misericordia at William Smith
W:
4:30 PM
Anderson at St. Mary-Woods
W:
4:30 PM
Salve Regina at Bridgewater State
Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
St. Joseph's (Bklyn.) at Medgar Evers
Video
W:
5:00 PM
Bluffton at Grace Christian (MI)
W:
5:00 PM
UC Clermont at Defiance
Video Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
Spalding at Hanover
Video Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
Fisher at Cazenovia
W:
5:00 PM
Medaille at Fredonia State
W:
5:00 PM
Western Connecticut at Farmingdale State
Video Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
Kenyon at Capital
Video
W:
5:00 PM
Widener at TCNJ
W:
5:00 PM
Simmons at Johnson and Wales
Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
Huntingdon at Rhodes
Video Live stats
W:
5:00 PM
Iowa Wesleyan at Lincoln Christian
W:
5:30 PM
Talladega at LaGrange
Video Live stats
W:
5:30 PM
Marietta at Berea
Video Live stats
W:
5:30 PM
UW-Oshkosh at Ripon
Video
W:
5:30 PM
Simpson at Grinnell
Video Live stats
W:
5:30 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Washington U.
W:
5:30 PM
Bethany Lutheran at Martin Luther
W:
6:00 PM
St. Joseph (Conn.) at Mount Holyoke
Video Live stats
W:
6:00 PM
Smith at Eastern Connecticut
Video Live stats
W:
6:00 PM
Rockford at Beloit
Live stats
W:
6:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Lawrence
Video
W:
6:30 PM
Meredith at Ferrum
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Anna Maria at Rivier
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Albright at Moravian
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
St. Joseph's (L.I.) at William Paterson
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Johns Hopkins at Penn State-Berks
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
New Paltz State at Bard
W:
7:00 PM
Ramapo at Drew
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Salisbury at Washington College
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Scranton at New York University
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Albany Pharmacy at SUNY Poly
W:
7:00 PM
Mitchell at Massachusetts Maritime
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Nazareth at Geneseo State
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Wilkes at Susquehanna
W:
7:00 PM
NVU-Johnson at Norwich
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Hiram at Baldwin Wallace
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Finlandia at UW-Superior
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
McDaniel at Stevenson
Video Live stats Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Agnes Scott at Oglethorpe
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Keene State at Westfield State
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Penn State-Altoona at Juniata
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Earlham at Wilmington
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Guilford at Pfeiffer
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Rosemont at Delaware Valley
W:
7:00 PM
Vassar at Montclair State
W:
7:00 PM
John Jay at Sarah Lawrence
W:
7:00 PM
Allegheny at John Carroll
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
UW-Eau Claire at Northland
W:
7:00 PM
Chapman at Caltech
Video Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
Cal Lutheran at Whittier
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
La Verne at Pomona-Pitzer
Live stats
W:
7:30 PM
Mount Union at Chatham
Video Live stats
W:
7:30 PM
Denison at Franklin
Video Live stats
W:
7:30 PM
Eastern at Stockton
W:
8:00 PM
North Park at MSOE
Video Live stats
W:
8:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at Carroll
W:
8:00 PM
Wartburg at UW-La Crosse
W:
8:00 PM
Sewanee at Alabama Huntsville
Video Live stats
W:
8:00 PM
Millikin at Greenville
Video Live stats
W:
8:00 PM
Rose-Hulman at Illinois Wesleyan
Video Live stats
W:
8:00 PM
Carthage at UW-Whitewater
W:
8:30 PM
Redlands at Occidental
Video Live stats Live stats
W:
10:00 PM
Pacific at Linfield
Video Live stats
Wednesday, Sep. 18: All times Eastern
M:
4:00 PM
Centenary (N.J.) at Montclair State
M:
4:00 PM
Rowan at Haverford
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Stevens at Franklin and Marshall
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Otterbein at Ohio Wesleyan
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
St. Mary's (Md.) at Swarthmore
Video Live stats
M:
7:00 PM
Wooster at Capital
Video
M:
7:00 PM
Mount Union at Geneva
Video Live stats
M:
7:30 PM
Kenyon at Marietta
M:
7:30 PM
John Carroll at Case Western Reserve
Video Live stats
M:
7:45 PM
Amherst at Merchant Marine
Video Live stats
M:
10:00 PM
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at Cal Lutheran
Video Live stats
Wednesday, Sep. 18: All times Eastern
W:
4:00 PM
Rowan at Arcadia
W:
4:30 PM
Misericordia at William Smith
W:
5:00 PM
Widener at TCNJ
W:
5:30 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Washington U.
W:
7:00 PM
Johns Hopkins at Penn State-Berks
Live stats
W:
7:00 PM
La Verne at Pomona-Pitzer
Live stats
W:
8:00 PM
Wartburg at UW-La Crosse