Richmond Spiders Annual Report 2017-18 Continued Success and Building for the Future

The 2017-18 year was yet another successful year for Richmond, both on and off the field. The Spiders won championships and set records but also continue to build for future. Richmond introduced a new Athletic Director and made significant progress on several, important facilities projects.

Richmond had three programs win conference championships and compete in NCAA postseason championships: men's lacrosse, women's lacrosse and women's golf. Richmond was the only school in all of NCAA Division I to earn the automatic qualifier berths in both men's and women's lacrosse.

Men's lacrosse won the 2018 Southern Conference regular season championship and took home the SoCon Tournament title in dramatic fashion with an overtime win in Robins Stadium. The Spiders represented UR in the NCAA Tournament, playing at Albany in the first round. The Richmond men's lacrosse program has been to the NCAA Tournament in two of the first five years of the program.

The women's lacrosse team earned a share of the Atlantic 10 Conference regular season title and took home the program's its fourth A-10 Conference Championship and the first since 2007 when the Spiders knocked off nine-time conference champion Massachusetts in dramatic fashion, winning in overtime at Robins Stadium

Women’s golf won its third-straight Patriot League Championship under the direction of head coach Ali Wright. The Spiders represented UR in the NCAA Tournament, travelling to the Tallahassee Regional.

Our student-athletes took home over 50 All-Conference honors during the season and won five conference Player of the Year awards. Also, women's lacrosse head coach Allison Kwolek earned Coach of the Year honors.

Emily Dunbar of Spider tennis was named the Atlantic 10 Conference Co-Performer of the Year and the A-10 Rookie of the Year.

Kim Egizi of Spider women's lacrosse was named the Atlantic 10 Conference Offensive Player of the Year after setting the Richmond single-season scoring record.

Richmond quarterback Kyle Lauletta was named the Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year, marking the first Spider since 1992 to earn the honor.

Julie Ball of women's lacrosse was named the Atlantic 10 Conference Defensive Player of the Year, giving the Spiders a sweep of the top two individual awards.

Sophie DiPetrillo of Spider women's golf was named the Patriot League Most Outstanding Player and also won the individual title in the Patriot League Championships.

The Richmond men's basketball program finished the season tied for fifth in the Atlantic 10 Conference and freshman Grant Golden earned All-Conference honors after setting the Spider scoring mark for a freshman.

The Spider football team finished the 2017 season with a 6-5 overall record and 11 different student-athletes earned All-Colonial Athletic Association honors.

The Richmond baseball program returned to the Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament this year after winning 32 games, the most for Richmond since the 2007 season.

The Spider field hockey program posted a 6-2 record in the Atlantic 10 Conference and seven different student-athletes earned All-Conference accolades.

The Richmond women's soccer program placed 21 student-athletes on the Atlantic 10 Commissioner's Honor Roll.

The Spiders record-setting 4x800M relay team won the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships, winning the event for a second-straight season.

The Spider women's tennis programs advanced to the Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament semifinals this spring in Florida, while sophomore Kiana Marshall and freshman Emily Dunbar earned All-Conference honors.

Senior Johnny Hogue of the Spider men's cross country program finished fifth overall at the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships to lead Richmond.

Women's swimming and diving came in second place in the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships.

The Richmond men's golf team finished fifth at the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships and senior Matthew Lowe became a four-time All-Conference selection after placing fifth overall.

The Spider women's basketball program finished eighth overall in the Atlantic 10 Conference while Micaela Parson was named the Atlantic 10 Most Improved Player of the Year.

The Spider men's tennis programs advanced to the Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament semifinals this spring in Florida, while seniors James Aronson and Caleb Troy along with sophomore Klein Evans earned All-Conference honors.

Spider quarterback Kyle Lauletta was selected in the fourth round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the New York Giants. Kyle becomes the first Spider quarterback taken since 1975.

For the fourth consecutive year, at least one Spider Baseball player has been selected in the MLB Draft. Junior Layne Looney was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 19th round while senior Vinny Capra was selected in the 20th round by the Toronto Blue Jays.

In the classroom, the 2017-18 year was the strongest academic performance on record for Spider student-athletes. The average team GPA was a 3.19, the highest-ever. Of our 346 student-athletes, our average GPA is a 3.12, best in program history.

Individually, 65-percent of the student-athletes earned a 3.00 or better this year, yet another record! Also, over 59-percent of all student-athletes now boast a cumulative GPA of a 3.00 or better during their careers.

Women's cross country/track standout Kylie Regan earned one of the top honors in all of the University this year, being named the University Mace Award Winner (Norman Award). The Mace Award is named for the University's Outstanding Student. Kylie showed a clear record of exceptional scholarly achievement and demonstrated leadership throughout her years at the University.

Additionally, nearly 50 student-athletes have studied abroad, spanning six of the seven continents. In the past year, over one-third of the Spider student-athletes have either studied abroad or received a UR Summer Fellowship, which supports internships or summer research projects.

Four student-athletes took part in an amazing, educational experience in Kevin Johnson (football), Nick Sherod (men’s basketball), Alex Parson (women’s basketball) and Marshea Robinson (women’s track/cross country). Inspired by the University of Richmond’s Faculty Seminar in South Africa and being an integral experience of the Spider Athletics Leadership Initiative, these student-athletes toured local historical and cultural sites to explore the dynamics within Cape Town and South Africa. The group focused upon Nelson Mandela and his commingling of leadership and social justice.

Our women’s lacrosse program had another amazing opportunity after the season as the Spiders spent 13 days abroad in Italy, Austria and the Czech Republic, experiencing the culture of each site. In each country, the team will experience both guided tours and self-guided exploration to gain cultural exposure through the history, architecture, art, religion and gastronomy. The University of Richmond has been a leader in providing its students international experiences and our Spider student-athletes are taking full advantage of this life-changing opportunity.

This year, we welcomed Vice President and Director of Athletics John Hardt to the Spider family. Hardt began his time at UR in January after spending the past 18 years as Director of Athletics at Bucknell University.

In a few short months at Richmond, Hardt has sparked significant progress on several of important facilities projects including the Student-Athlete Performance Center; Basketball Practice Facility, Golf Offices/Student-Athlete Lounge and Indoor Hitting Facility and the Westhampton Tennis Court renovations.

A brand-new, basketball practice facility was announced during the year. The new facility, projected to cost $15 million, launched with a generous $7.5 million lead gift by Paul and Anne-Marie Queally, 1986 UR graduates. Construction is expected to begin late in the spring of 2019, following the completion of a successful fundraising effort, and the projected opening is the fall of 2020.

Construction and renovation of the new Student-Athlete Performance Center was in full swing on the first floor of the Robins Center. These renovations will include new locker rooms for football and men’s lacrosse as well as locker room spaces for our men’s and women's coaches. We will also enlarge and enhance the sports medicine area, add a nutrition station, add a new equipment room and enhance the strength and conditioning area. We began these renovations in January and work is moving along quickly.

The football locker room, sport medicine, nutrition station and strength and conditioning areas have an anticipated completion date around July 1, 2018. The men’s lacrosse locker room should be completed by the start of class in fall, 2018 and the equipment room and coaches’ locker rooms will be completed in late 2018.

Hardt wasn't the only new face this season as the Spiders announced the hiring of Marty Beall as head women's soccer coach after the season. Beall spent the last nine seasons as the head coach at High Point. During his tenure at HPU, he led the Panthers to 95 wins, including a 57-20-11 record in Big South play. He holds the HPU all-time program records for overall wins and conference wins and is a two-time Big South Coach of the Year selection.

Richmond field hockey also had a new face in the fold when Jamie Montgomery was named head coach after the season. Montgomery, a four-year starter for the Demon Deacons, was a member of two national championship teams and two ACC title squads. She earned All-ACC, NCAA All-Tournament and Second Team All-American honors. During her career with the Deacs, Montgomery was a member of the U.S. Field Hockey Junior National Team (2004-06) and competed in the 2005 Junior PanAm Games and the Junior World Cup.

Spider fan support was outstanding again in 2017-18 as both the football program and men's basketball programs finished in the top three in its conference in attendance. This year's men's basketball attendance was the highest home attendance in a quarter-century, including six sellouts of the Robins Center.

2017-2018 was a year of continued success on and off the field and a year of building for the future. We are excited as we look forward to another exciting year in Spider Athletics in 2018-2019. Thank you for all of your support of Richmond Athletics. Without our fans’ support, we could not have such positive momentum moving forward. Please continue to support our amazing student-athletes who are honored to represent the University of Richmond!


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