May 20, 2010

McCauley, Weiser Earn First-Team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District Honors

Duo Led Field Hockey Team to School Record for Ivy League Wins While Excelling in Classroom

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – A pair of Yale field hockey student-athletes -- senior forward Ashley McCauley (Rye, N.Y.) and senior back Julia Weiser (Houston, Texas) -- were named first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District 1 women's at-large selections on Thursday. This is the second straight year McCauley has been named Academic All-District, as she was a second-team pick last year. The two are now eligible for ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America honors, which will be announced next month.

This is the latest in a series of academic honors for McCauley and Weiser, who were also four-time National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division I National Academic Squad honorees and were Academic All-Ivy League selections this past fall. While excelling in the classroom, the duo led Yale to one of the team's best seasons ever in 2009. The Bulldogs set the school record for Ivy League wins, earned votes in the national poll for five straight weeks, and finished tied for the third-most overall wins in a season in school history (12). Yale ended the season on a six-game winning streak. The Bulldogs had seven players earn All-Ivy League recognition and three players earn All-Mideast Region honors. Yale also had 13 NFHCA National Academic Squad honorees, and the Bulldogs as a whole earned an NFHCA National Academic Team Award -- an honor they have received all five years under head coach Pam Stuper.

McCauley is a two-time NFHCA All-Region selection, including a first-team selection this past year. She set the Yale career points record in the season's final game. She finished with 100 points, breaking the mark of 98 established by Emily Montgomery '78 32 years ago. McCauley's 43 career goals are second only to Montgomery (46) on Yale's all-time list.

McCauley also earned first team All-Ivy League this year, the second season in a row she has received first-team honors. She was a second-team pick in 2007.

McCauley, who was tied for fourth in the league in goals (14) and was fifth in points (33), was a two-time Ivy League Player of the Week selection and also earned one womensfieldhockey.com National Honor Roll selection. Her 14 goals included a pair of hat tricks: one against Sacred Heart in a 7-0 win to open the season and one in a 4-3 win over Harvard. She also had five points (two goals and an assist) in the 5-2 win over Dartmouth.

The 2007 Ivy League leader in goals with 15, McCauley has three of the top seven highest single-season point totals in Yale history and three of the top eight highest single-season goal totals in Yale history. In 2007 she was second in the NCAA in goals per game (15 in 17 games, 0.88) and sixth in the NCAA in points per game (35 in 17 games, 2.06).

McCauley's scoring spree is all the more remarkable given that she only had one point as a freshman. She has averaged 33 points a season since then.

An American studies major in Ezra Stiles College, McCauley is going to work for facebook after graduation. She is a graduate of Rye High School. 

Weiser led a Yale defense that had three shutouts and six other games where the Bulldogs' opponent only scored one goal. She also contributed offensively, scoring three goals and adding five assists. She started 50 straight games over the past three seasons.

Elected captain by her teammates this past season, Weiser has been a vocal leader ever since she arrived in New Haven. She received two of the annual Yale field hockey awards this past year. That included the Coaches Award, which is given to the player who exemplifies principles, direction and persistence in pursuit of field hockey excellence at Yale, and the Amanda Walton Award, which is given by the Yale players and coaching staff to that team member who demonstrates the ability to confront challenges, displaying the courage to overcome them, while inspiring teammates with her work ethic and unselfish attitude. The award is named after Amanda Walton '02, who has been an inspiration to the Bulldogs. After her sophomore year at Yale, Walton -- a field hockey and lacrosse player -- was involved in an automobile accident which put her career on hold. She overcame a coma and physical injuries with hard work and dedication and currently serves as a special assistant to the Yale coaching staff.

A biology major in Calhoun College, Weiser is headed to medical school. She is a St. John's School graduate.

Academic All-District voting is done by the members of College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). There are eight districts throughout the country, with 10 first-team and 12 second-team honorees in District 1 this year. Members of the first team in each district are eligible for ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America honors, which will be announced on June 10.

The at-large ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America program includes up to three nominees per school across 13 different women's NCAA sports (bowling, crew, fencing, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, rifle, skiing, swimming, tennis and water polo).

Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity