NORTON, MA- This Homecoming Saturday the Wheaton College Department of Athletics will recognize three anniversary teams during halftime of the men's soccer game against the United States Coast Guard Academy on Keefe Field, which is scheduled for a 1:00 p.m. start. The 1983 field hockey, 1999 women's indoor track & field and 2000 baseball teams will each be honored.
The department will pay tribute to field hockey becoming the first Wheaton program to advance to an NCAA Tournament, women's indoor track & field capturing the school's initial NCAA national championship, and baseball qualifying for its first NCAA Tournament.
The ceremony commemorating the aforementioned programs will be facilitated by Executive Director of Athletics Chad Yowell, Associate Director of Athletics John Sutyak '00 and Senior Woman Administrator Rebecca Begley. Invited guests will be encouraged to join other former student-athletes, alums, families and additional Lyon supporters under the Homecoming Welcome Tent, sponsored by the Lyons Athletic Club (LAC) and Wheaton Alumnae/i Association.
Saturday's festivities are also set to have audio and video coverage from Norton Community Television and student-run campus radio station WCCS-FM 96.5. The broadcast will be on a tape-delay basis and will be available free of charge on Wheaton's athletics Web site at www.wheatoncollege.edu/athletics.
The 1983 Wheaton field hockey team not only qualified for the NCAA Tournament but also won its opening-round game against Salem State College under the former Debi Field, the squad's head coach. In the second round, the Lyons fell to eventual national champion The College of New Jersey. With a 13-3 record, Wheaton's winning percentage and nine shutouts that fall still each rank second in program history, while its 13 victories remain tied for second. The Blue and White's seven-game winning streak is also tied for the second best.
Wheaton's 1999 women's indoor track & field team's national championship marked the beginning of an era under head coach Paul Souza, now in his 16th year, that laid witness to five straight indoor national crowns from 1999-2003 and a trio of outdoor titles from 2001-03. The 1999 squad needed the meet's final event, the 4×400-meter relay, to pull out a tight win over the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse. Wheaton finished with 43 points to La Crosse's 38 at Ohio Northern University. During the meet, Lyons won one event while earning 10 All-America honors.
With current 14th-year head coach Eric Podbelski at the helm, Wheaton baseball qualified for the 2000 NCAA Tournament in just its third season of varsity existence, recording a 28-12 mark while winning its second straight New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) regular season and tournament championships. The Lyons went 11-1 in league play during the regular season before posting a perfect 3-0 mark in the conference tournament, defeating Springfield College, Clark University and Coast Guard.