Former Western New England University women's soccer captain and 2015 Downes Athletics Hall of Fame inductee Kristin (Thornton) Hensinger '07 was named the seventh head coach in program history on August 9, 2016.
Under Hensinger's leadership, the women's soccer program continued its resurgence during her third season in 2018. The Golden Bears hosted a home playoff game for the second straight year and earned Western New England's first CCC Tournament championship game appearance since 2009. Allison Bruehwiler collected Western New England's second consecutive CCC Rookie of the Year award, and four other Golden Bears garnered All-CCC accolades. Additionally, Bruehwiler and senior captain Erin Grimes were recognized as NEWISA All-New England performers.
In 2017, Western New England went 10-8-2 overall, the most wins for the team since 2010, and 7-2 in league play, good for third in the CCC standings. The Golden Bears hosted the University of New England in their first home playoff contest since the 2010 campaign, earning a spot in the CCC semifinals with a 2-0 victory over the Nor'easters. Six of Hensinger's student-athletes garnered All-CCC accolades, including first team selections Alex Lemekha and Brooke Labrie, as well as CCC Rookie of the Year Morgan Smith. Hensinger was recognized for Western New England's turnaround with her selection as CCC Co-Coach of the Year.
The Bedford, N.H. native took charge of the program ahead of the 2016 campaign after serving on fellow Hall-of-Famer Ron Dias' staff for nine seasons. Hensinger led the Golden Bears to a 6-11-3 record and an appearance in the CCC Tournament during her first season as head coach.
Hensinger was a four-year midfielder for Western New England from 2003-06 and one of the top players in school history. As a senior, she led the Golden Bears to an 11-8-2 record and a berth in the NCAA Division III Championship. She was voted the Most Valuable Player of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament after leading WNE to the team title.
Hensinger led the team in scoring with 23 points on six goals and 11 assists in making the New England Women’s Intercollegiate Soccer Association (NEWISA) Division III Team. She also was a four-time All-GNAC performer.
Hensinger earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Western New England before going on to receive her master's degree, also in psychology, from Springfield College in May 2009.
Kristin Hensinger was inducted into the Western New England Downes Athletic Hall of Fame on Oct. 2, 2015. Also taking part in the presentation were (from left): WNE senior associate director of athletics Joe Sassi, women's soccer coach Ron Dias, and University president Anthony S. Caprio.
|2016||6||11||3||.375||3-5-1/7th||2 All-CCC Selections|
|2017||10||8||2||.550||7-2/3rd||6 All-CCC Selections, CCC Co-Coach of the Year|
|2018||8||8||5||.500||4-1-3/4th||5 All-CCC Selections, 2 All-New England|
|Totals||24||27||10||.475||14-8-4 (.615)||13 All-CCC Selections, 2017 CCC Co-Coach of the Year