NAPERVILLE, ILLINOIS - The University of Dubuque Men's and Women's Lacrosse teams have been announced as the newest members of the College Conferences of Illinois & Wisconsin (CCIW). The Spartans will be associate members of the league beginning in 2014-15.
The women's program will be the sixth team in the league, joining current full-time members Augustana College, Carthage College, Elmhurst College, Illinois Wesleyan University, and North Central College when the league begins competing in the spring of 2015. The men's team will compete as the fifth school in the conference joining Augustana, Carthage, Elmhurst, and Illinois Wesleyan. The 2015 season will be the first year that the CCIW has sponsored lacrosse as a conference sport.
The UD Men's Lacrosse team will play as an independent in 2014 after competing as a club team in 2013. As a club team, the Spartans faced other club teams from Cornell, Iowa, and Iowa State.
UD opens the 2014 season on February 19th at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. Game time is 4:00 pm.
"We are excited to be adding Dubuque as an associate member for men's and women's lacrosse," CCIW commissioner Chris Martin said. "The addition of Dubuque will help to enhance the lacrosse student-athlete experience in the CCIW."
The UD Women's Lacrosse team is led by first year head coach Kendall Loggins. As a first year independent, the Spartans finished 1-11 in 2013. Dubuque returns its top three goal scorers from last season in Judy Borah (Mammoth Lakes, Calif./Pacific Palisades Charter), Bridget Schirmers (Coon Rapids, Minn./Coon Rapids), and Nicole Pacheco (Addison, Ill./Addison Trail). Borah finished with a team high 26 goals and six assists. Schirmers scored 10 goals while Pacheco scored three goals. The Spartans will compete as a member of the Midwest Women's Lacrosse Conference in 2014 before joining the CCIW in 2015.
According to the NCAA, lacrosse saw the highest growth of any sport in 2012-13 as 40 women's programs and 26 men's programs were added across all three divisions. A total of 207 Division III men's programs and 240 Division III women's programs competed in 2012-13.
More information about the Spartans joining the CCIW can be found at: CCIW - UD
Addition info on the CCIW adding Lacrosse can be found at: CCIW - Lacrosse
Follow all UD Athletics action on Twitter at: @UDubuqueSports