WINTHROP, Mass. – Just as it did during the season, the Johnson & Wales University women's lacrosse team dominated the GNAC All-Conference teams. The Wildcats had 10 players selected to the all-conference teams with Dani Lydecker collecting Rookie of the Year and Jessica Scannapieco claiming Coach of the Year.
Attackers Raquel Pederzani and Maria Patane as well as defender Deja Hursey were named First-Team All-GNAC. Making it onto the Second-Team All-GNAC were attackers Lydecker and Allison Pazienski, midfielder Madeline Bishara as well as defenders Sophia Czarnecki and Elizabeth Tonn. Rookies Marley Medina and Cassidy O'Hara are members of the Third-Team All-GNAC.
From the start of the season, Lydecker has been a key member of the Wildcats' high-scoring offense. She scored six goals in just her third collegiate game and has found the back of the net at least once in all 19 games she has played. The Valley Cottage, NY, native leads all GNAC rookies and is 10th overall with 48 goals. She's also ninth with 17 assists and 11th at 65 points.
In her first year on the sidelines at JWU, Scannapieco directed the Wildcats to their second-straight conference championship and a school-record 17 victories. Johnson & Wales is currently ranked 10th in the New England region. The Wildcats are ranked sixth in the nation at 18.21 goals per game as well as an 11-goal scoring margin.
This is the second year in a row that Pederzani has been a first-team all-conference selection in two sports. Just like she does on the basketball court, the Coventry, RI, native knows how to distribute the ball on the lacrosse field. She leads the GNAC with 43 assists and set the JWU career record over the weekend with 103 helpers. Pederzani is fourth in the GNAC with 91 points.
Patane has doubled her offensive production from last year. A member of the GNAC All-Tournament, she leads the team and is third in the GNAC for points (96) – breaking the JWU single-season record - while ranking fourth for goals (64) and fifth in assists (32). The Greenwich, NY, native has produced 10 hat tricks, led by a career-best seven at UMass Dartmouth, and has three games with seven or more points.
A First-Team All-GNAC selection in women's soccer this season, Hursey collected First-Team honors in her first season on the lacrosse team. Named to the GNAC All-Tournament team, she leads the team and is sixth in the GNAC with 51 ground balls. The Columbia, Md., native is seventh in the league with 23 caused turnovers.
Pazienski has become one of the top goal scorers in the conference. She's eighth in the GNAC with a single-season school record 68 goals while ranking second with 84 points. The New Hyde Park, NY, native has 10 hat tricks, including a career-high six goals against Mount Ida.
Named GNAC Tournament MVP, Bishara has had a strong second half of the season. A Second-Team All-GNAC pick a year ago, she has scored a career-high 25 goals, including 18 versus GNAC teams. A native of Saunderstown, RI, she has five multi-goal games, including a career-high four against Regis, Emmanuel and Albertus Magnus.
Czarnecki and Tonn are key pieces to a JWU defense that is limiting opponents to a GNAC-low 7.25 goals per game. That number drops to 4.70 against conference opponents. It's the second All-GNAC award for the Wantagh, NY, native Tonn who has picked up 28 ground balls and caused 16 turnovers. The Greensburg, Pa, native Czarnecki is collecting her first honor after hauling in 23 ground balls and causing eight turnovers.
The rookie Medina has been a key part in JWU's draw control success down the stretch. She rates seventh in the league with 77 draw controls to go along with 43 points. A member of the GNAC All-Tournament team, nearly 90 percent of her 21 goals have come in the last month. The South Hadley, Mass. native is sixth in the league with 22 assists.
O'Hara has been the last line of defense that JWU has been missing over the years. Twice named GNAC Goalkeeper of the Week., she is ranked first in the league with a 7.54 goals against average that drops to 4.95 against league teams. The Mashpee, Mass., native has five games with double-digit saves, topped by 13 versus Lasell.
Johnson & Wales is set for its second NCAA Tournament appearance in a row. The Wildcats travel to Rowan University where they will take on Catholic University in the first round of the tournament on Saturday.