"UMBC is a champion in academics and in athletics. We are extremely proud of the outstanding efforts of the young men and women on our sports teams and of their
coaches and staff."
— President Freeman A. Hrabowski, III
UMBC Athletes Win Fourth Consecutive Commissioner's Cup
July 24, 2002 - For the fourth year in a row, UMBC student-athletes have taken home the Northeast Conference's top prize — the Commissioner’s Cup. The award is given annually to the school that performs best in the league’s 21 championship sports. UMBC is the first school in the NEC to win four consecutive Commissioner’s Cup titles.
“It was a very rewarding year,” said UMBC Director of Athletics Charles Brown. “We participated in six NCAA Championships, our highest total ever. A high percentage of our outstanding performers were
underclassmen, and with a good recruiting year, we hope to be competitive for the Cup again next year.”
Four Retriever teams captured NEC titles this spring. The powerful women’s lacrosse team won its fourth title in five years, and the women’s softball team won for the second time in three years. The men’s and women’s tennis teams repeated as NEC champions for the third and fourth consecutive years, respectively. In addition to team victories, freshman Lindsey Prather became the first UMBC swimmer in 12 years to qualify for the NCAA Championships, and Cleopatra Borel won the NCAA women’s shot put, becoming UMBC’s first national champion. A three-time All-American, Borel, an interdisciplinary studies major, graduated in May with a 3.40 GPA and is a contender for the 2004 Olympics.
The NEC also selected coaches Keith Puryear (men’s and women’s tennis), Monica Yeakel (women’s lacrosse), and Chad Cradock (women’s swimming) as Coaches of the Year and named Jamie Gerhart (women’s lacrosse), Deanna Vecchio (softball), and Jared Boyd (baseball) as NEC Players of the Year.
The Retrievers’ success is not limited to the fields of play. A record 51 percent of UMBC’s student-athletes earned GPAs of 3.00 or higher this spring, and four student-athletes with GPAs between 3.40 to 3.95 earned Academic All-America honors this year.