Posted: Feb 17, 2015
For more information, contact Professor Curt Hamakawa at 413-782-1786, email@example.com or log on to www.wne.edu/cisb
Strong plans to share with the audience her experiences playing at the international level and about her journey making the U.S. National Field Hockey Team.
Strong is a two-time Olympian who helped the United States win the bronze medal at the 1984 Los Angeles summer games. A three-sport athlete in field hockey, basketball and lacrosse at the University of Massachusetts, she finished her career with the Minutewomen as the field hockey program's all-time leading scorer with 202 points--one of nine school records that she still owns today. She racked up 88 career goals for No. 1 in UMass annals and 26 assists, which is sixth on the school charts.
Prior to joining the Golden Bears coaching staff in 2014, Strong was a full-time official of women's lacrosse and field hockey, working numerous NCAA championship events at all three divisional levels, and before that she was a physical education instructor at Smith College and coached there from 1987 to 2006. She ranks as the Pioneers all-time winningest coach with 98 lacrosse victories from 1988 to 2001 and '03 and 171 field hockey wins from 1987-2006.
In her first season at the WNE helm last fall, Strong led the Golden Bears to a 6-13 record to double the squad's win total from the previous year. Seven of the losses came by only three goals or less, as the WNE defensive unit was able to shave 36 goals from the total that it allowed in 2013.
In 2005, Strong was selected to the NCAA Division I 25th Anniversary Team as the NCAA Division I Field Hockey Championship was one of several women's championships celebrating their 25th anniversary under the NCAA banner during the 2005-06 academic year.
Strong was a member of the 1981 UMass team that went 17-1-2 under head coach Pam Hixon, defeating Long Beach State in the NCAA semifinals, 1-0, before falling to UConn, 4-1, in the national championship game. She was selected to the NCAA All-Tournament team and was also named the National Player of the Year after posting 27 goals and 58 points, both season records for a UMass senior.
UMass Field Hockey compiled a 67-15-5 record for an .799 winning percentage during Strong's four-year career from 1978 to 1981. The three-time Mitchell and Ness All-America selection played on two New England championship teams in 1979 and 1980.
In addition to her collegiate days, Strong also excelled at the international level in field hockey as a member of Team USA from 1978-84. She was part of two Olympic teams, including her last appearance in 1984 when the United States won the bronze medal. She also represented her country in the 1983 World Cup of Field Hockey staged in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In 2014, Strong was inducted as a member of the 1984 U.S. Olympic field hockey team into the USA Field Hockey Hall of Fame.
She also scored nine goals, 10 assists and 19 points during her three-year career for the Minutewomen lacrosse team, which fashioned a 36-8-1 record from 1979-81. UMass was the United States Women's Lacrosse Association (USWLA) runner-up when she was a sophomore and the team made a pair of Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) semifinal appearances during her junior and senior seasons.
Calling Hatfield her hometown, Strong received a bachelor of science degree in physical education from UMass in 1982. She is a 1997 UMass Athletics Hall of Fame inductee.