May 1, 2012

Crow, Quackenbush and Sherrill Honored with Team Awards

Senior Captain Wins Bowditch Award as Most Valuable Player

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale women's lacrosse team announced its annual awards at the team's season-ending luncheon Monday at Mory's. Both of the team's seniors earned awards, as attacker Caroline Crow (Davidsonville, Md.) received the Bowditch Award as the team's most valuable player and senior goalkeeper Whitney Quackenbush (Manhasset, N.Y.) received the Holgate Award for dedication. Additionally, sophomore defender Katherine Sherrill (New York, N.Y.) won the Most Improved Player Award.

Crow, Yale's captain, enjoyed the best season of her career as she shot .467 and finished with the team lead in goals (35), assists (14) and points (49) -- all more than double her previous career highs. She had at least one point in every game except one, and ended the year with eight straight multiple-point games. Her 17 goals in Ivy League games tied for sixth in the conference.

All year long Crow provided a veteran presence on Yale's attack, helping to bring together a group that featured just one other upperclassman (junior attacker Devon Rhodes (E. Northport, N.Y.)). All told, the Bulldogs had 19 freshmen and sophomores on the 24-person roster. They finished with 137 goals, their most since 2008 and a 65 percent increase over the previous season's total. They more than doubled their goal total in Ivy games from the previous year (54 to 26), and ended with wins in their final two league games.

 "Caroline had a great year individually, leading the attack," said Anne Phillips, Yale's Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach of Women's Lacrosse. "And she also did a tremendous job leading off the field. The camaraderie and positive chemistry this team had is in large part due to her leadership, which was an inclusive brand of leadership. That chemistry played a large role in helping us move up in the Ivy League standings."

Crow ended the season with a 13-game point scoring streak, and had seven hat tricks.

Due to various injuries, Crow had been limited to no more than 11 games in each of her first three years. She still leaves with three of the team's most significant recognitions. In addition to being captain and earning the Bowditch Award this season, as a sophomore she earned the team's Most Improved Player Award after battling back from injury.

Crow is a history major in Jonathan Edwards College. Prior to Yale she attended Severn.

The Bowditch Award is named after Barbara Bowditch, the coach of Yale's first varsity team (1976). It is determined by a team vote.

The Holgate Award that Quackenbush received is given to the player whose dedication to the ideals of Yale and to the success of women's lacrosse measure up to the standards set by James G. "Gib" Holgate, a member of the Yale athletic administration from 1954 to 1985. It is determined by a team vote.

Like Crow, Quackenbush played a key role in Yale's team chemistry. After starting the first five games this season and helping the Bulldogs to a 17-13 win over Holy Cross in the opener, she backed up sophomore goalkeeper Erin McMullan (Wading River, N.Y.) for the remainder of the season. She came back to start one more game on Apr. 14 against Columbia and earned the win on Senior Day at Reese Stadium with seven saves. Overall, she appeared in 51 career games and made 50 career starts.

A vocal leader for Yale's defense, Quackenbush was a second team All-Northeast Region selection as a freshman and an honorable mention All-Ivy League selection twice. She is just the second Yale goalie in the last nine years to have two seasons with a save percentage of .490 or better. She totaled 407 saves for her career, the seventh-best total in school history.

"Whitney was dedicated no matter what role she played -- as a starter or as a backup," said Phillips. "She was dedicated to helping both her fellow goalies and the defense as a whole. She continued to contribute in a leadership role both on and off the field."

Quackenbush is a psychology major in Ezra Stiles College. Prior to Yale she attended Manhasset.

Sherrill earned the Most Improved Player Award, which is determined by the coaches, after a breakthrough season as a key part of Yale's defense. She started 14 games this year after playing in just one game as a freshman.

"Katherine only got in for a few minutes as a freshman," said Phillips. "But she really wanted to contribute more, so she spent her summer and fall working on the areas that she needed to improve on to play at this level. That hard work and countless hours of practice transformed her game. That is one of the most rewarding things you can be a part of as a coach -- when someone on your team comes in and asks what they need to do to improve, then does it and is successful."

Sherrill is a history major in Saybrook College. Prior to Yale she attended Phillips Andover.

At the banquet Yale also announced that Rhodes has been elected captain for 2012-13.

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