BUZZARDS BAY, Mass. -- Bridgewater State University has claimed the 2011-2012 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference Howard C. Smith Cup that is awarded annually to the member institution which compiles the most points based on the placement of each of its programs competing in the 15 league championship sports.
The Smith Cup is named in honor of former Massachusetts State College Trustee Howard C. Smith, who in 1970, urged the athletic directors of the eight State Colleges to hold a series of meetings to discuss the possibility of forming an intercollegiate conference. In June of 1971, Smith’s dream became a reality as an affirmative agreement was reached and the MASCAC was created.
Bridgewater State captured 79.9 percent (118.34 points) of a possible 148 points to top runner-up and two-time defending Smith Cup champion Westfield State University, which claimed 73.7 percent (118.01 points) of a possible 160 points to finish second.
Salem State University finished in third place with 60.2 percent (82 points) of a possible 136 points, while Worcester State University was next in fourth place after garnering 58.7 percent (94.01 points) of a possible 160 points.
Framingham State University followed in fifth place by earning 49.3 percent (73 points) of a possible 148 points, while Fitchburg State University (55.5 points) was next in sixth place after earning 37.5 percent of a possible 148 points. MCLA finished in seventh place after garnering 26.17 of a possible 100 points for 26.17 percent, while Massachusetts Maritime rounded out this year’s standings after earning 21.4 percent (24 points) of a possible 112 points.
“Recapturing the Smith Cup is an amazing achievement for our student-athletes, and I am thrilled to have the Cup back in Bridgewater,” Bridgewater State Director of Athletics John Harper said of winning this year’s Smith Cup. “When our athletics success is coupled with the fact that 52 percent of our student-athletes achieved a GPA of 3.0 or better, this truly was a successful year for the Bears.”
“I would also like to extend congratulations to (Director of Athletics) Dick Lenfest and all of the student-athletes, coaches and staff at Westfield State for another outstanding year of competition,” Harper continued. “All of their achievements both on the field and in the classroom are a direct reflection of the outstanding guidance and leadership they receive.”
Bridgewater State has now won outright or shared the Smith Cup 12 times, including nine over the last 15 years. Salem State has won or shared 19 of the 40 Smith Cups overall, while Westfield State has won or shared 10 Smith Cup crowns overall.
“I would like to congratulate Bridgewater State’s student-athletes and staff on all of their athletic achievements during this year’s closely contested Howard C. Smith Cup race,” MASCAC Commissioner Angela Baumann said. “The Bears enjoyed another great year in winning six MASCAC regular season championships, and their success is a testament to the hard work and dedication displayed by all student-athletes in our conference.”
The Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference, the nation’s oldest Division III men’s and women’s playing conference, has a rich and storied tradition of competitive success while celebrating excellence in the classroom. MASCAC member schools include Bridgewater State University, Fitchburg State University, Framingham State University, MCLA, Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Salem State University, Westfield State University and Worcester State University. Two other institutions, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and Plymouth State University, are affiliate members of the conference in the sport of men’s ice hockey.
Courtesy of Jim Seavey, MASCAC Director of Media Relations