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A Frozen Dynasty In the Making



SUNY Plattsburgh women's hockey team celebrates winning the NCAA DIvision III title in 2016.

A dynasty in sports is an easy term to throw around into the debate arena. What does it take to become a dynasty in sports fans’ eyes? Championships, MVPs, win-loss records, and much more are all ways to measure the accomplishments of teams at all levels of competitive play. Well now the SUNY Plattsburgh womens hockey team is entering their recent performances into the debate arena as proof of dynasty. This weekend, the lady Cardinals won their third consecutive and fifth overall NCAA Division III ice hockey championship when they notched a 5-1 victory over the University of Wisconsin-River Falls at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena on the SUNY Plattsburgh campus.

Despite being down 1-0 with 10 minutes remaining in the first period, Plattsburgh did not get nervous or worried. They quickly tied the game at 1-1 at the 13:13 mark of the first period before taking control in the second where they found themselves up 4-1 behind a goal and two assists from sophomore forward Melissa Sheeran and a goal and assist from senior Giovanna Senese. From there it was simply waiting for the clock to hit zero, finishing things off with a final score of 5-1.

This team, led by four seniors and five juniors who have been on the women’s ice hockey team for all three championships, has been at the top of the rankings consistently in recent years. But this year’s has a bit of an extra special touch, as the lady Cardinals finished the year with a 29-1-0 record, their best record in program history. Plattsburgh now joins Middlebury College as the only programs to win three consecutive national championships in ice hockey.

Since the beginning of the 21st century in 2001-02, the SUNY Plattsburgh women have compiled a stellar record of 355-52-24, which is an amazing .852 winning percentage. Those kinds of numbers can be used to argue dynasty in any sport. The ladies ended this year’s championship season on a 7 game winning streak. For the championship win to come on their home ice makes perfect sense too, as the Cardinals finished the season with a 17-0 record at home.

How does a successful program like this get built exactly? The makeup of a winning team like this in any sport is equal parts talent and chemistry. Some teams are put together with individual skill sets that are unique to the individual players, hoping chemistry develops over time. Others concentrate on mixing talent with chemistry from the beginning. With Plattsburgh’s players coming from as far as Alaska and California, and a good number from Canada, the mix proves successful. These lady Cardinals are as close off the ice as they are on.

Sophomore Melissa Sheeran puts that chemistry into perspective, saying “On and off the ice, we’re a tight group, and I think that’s what separates us from teams I’ve played on the past. You say you want to be a family with your team, but I look into that locker room and literally every one of those girls I feel like is my sister.” This goes a long way to show how chemistry needs to work both during and after the game.

So, congratulations to our SUNY Plattsbugh lady Cardinals for once again reaching the top of the mountain in NCAA women’s ice hockey. The north country of New York, with snow topped mountains and frozen land surrounding everyone through the winter hockey season, is officially Cardinal Country now. And these Cardinals can fly wherever they want, whenever they want, with success.

Taras Kufel

Written by Taras Kufel

Taras Kufel is the Manager of Digital Engagement at the State University of New York.

March 21, 2016

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Mascot Madness Champion, Hugo the Hawk, Speaks on His Victory and Getting Back to Work




SUNY Mascot Madness winner - Hugo Hawk from New PaltzThe first ever SUNY Mascot Madness came to a close yesterday with over 300,000 votes cast over the entire competition.  In a race that was too close to call initially, Hugo the Hawk from New Paltz was declared the winner of the first SUNY Mascot Madness over Wolfie the Seawolf from Stony Brook.  In a race to the finish, he met the library dean, cleaned the campus, and hung out with many students on campus.

We were able to catch up with Hugo and get his thoughts on the final round of the competition.

What responsibilities do you carry as SUNY Mascot Madness 2013 Champion?  What’s next for you?

As the SUNY Mascot Madness 2013 Champion, it is my duty to represent all that this title stands for. I will continue being the best mascot I can possibly be and keep getting better at it each day.

What will you do with all of your free time once SUNY Mascot Madness 2013 is complete?

With this free time I will get back to the basics. I will work on my cheers and dances and keep myself in tip-top shape for all the teams I root for. I will work hard to earn my place in next year’s tournament and make sure I do my best to defend my crown.


And we look forward to next year’s competition with you Hugo!

Hugo Hawk with Mascot Madness championship trophy

Emily Schwartz

Written by Emily Schwartz

Emily Schwartz is the Coordinator of Open SUNY Communication and Projects.

April 5, 2013

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Bobby Hurley Named University at Buffalo Men’s Basketball Head Coach




Bobby Hurley has been named the 12th head men's basketball coach at the University at Buffalo.

Bobby Hurley has been named the 12th head men’s basketball coach at the University at Buffalo.

Bobby Hurley, one of the most iconic figures in college basketball history, has been named the 12th head men’s basketball coach at the University at Buffalo.

He joins UB from the University of Rhode Island, where he has been serving as associate head coach. He was hired as an assistant coach at Wagner College in 2010, and spent two seasons with the Seahawks, playing a critical role in rebuilding the men’s basketball team. He helped lead Wagner to a 25-6 record during the 2011-12 season – its best record in school history – before joining Rhode Island.

A first-team All-American in 1993, Hurley is best remembered for being the point guard at Duke. Hurley helped lead the Blue Devils to three Final Four appearances and consecutive national championships in 1991 and 1992. Hurley still holds the NCAA record for career assists with 1,076.

Following his outstanding career at Duke, Hurley was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the seventh pick in the 1993 NBA Draft. He went on to play five years in the NBA with the Kings and Vancouver Grizzlies.

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SUNY Oneonta Senior Sets Off on 4,200-Mile Cross-Country Bike Adventure




Jayme Haynes biking in Central Bridge on her cross country adventure

Jami Haynes sets off from her home in Central Bridge, NY, on Tuesday, May 28.

SUNY Oneonta senior Jami Haynes set off on a 4,200-mile, cross-country bike adventure today with the goal of raising awareness about the Harvest of Hope Foundation, an organization that provides emergency assistance to migrant workers and their families. Haynes, 21, accompanied by her boyfriend and sister, left early Tuesday morning from her home in Central Bridge, N.Y.

An avid runner and hiker, Haynes got the idea for the “Miles for Migrants” bike tour after Harvest of Hope founder and President Phil Kellerman visited one of her education classes, taught by Madeline Berry, this past semester. Her 20-year-old sister, Jena, signed on for the adventure, and then her boyfriend, Caleb Grippin, 23, joined the team.

Jena Haynes, Caleb Grippin, Jami Haynes with bikes

SUNY Oneonta student Jami Haynes (right) with her sister, Jena, and boyfriend, Caleb Grippin.

“I wasn’t very familiar with what a migrant farm worker was and how they contributed to American society, and I was especially touched as a future educator by the support that Harvest of Hope gives to these families and the scholarships that the foundation provides,” Haynes said.

The class did a service-learning project to benefit Harvest of Hope, and Haynes kept the momentum going. She and her sister organized a spaghetti supper, several bake sales and a raffle, as well as giving presentations about Harvest of Hope on campus and in the community. “Spreading awareness of the foundation and how it helps migrant farm workers has been extremely rewarding,” Haynes said. “The community definitely knows a lot more about the contributions of migrant workers because of this project.”

Haynes hopes to continue raising awareness by meeting with media outlets during her journey. The trio plans to ride about 60 to 80 miles per day, camping and staying with friends and family members en route to San Francisco. They have been training for the trip for about three months, logging several hundred miles of short and long rides.

The Harvest of Hope Foundation was established in 1997, when Kellerman worked at ESCORT, a migrant education resource center based at SUNY Oneonta. In addition to its affiliation with ESCORT, SUNY Oneonta has operated a College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) since 2001. Created in 1972, CAMP is a federally-funded scholarship program that helps students from migrant and seasonal farm-working families pursue higher education.

ESCORT senior programmer analyst Bob Thomas, a friend of Kellerman’s, loaned Haynes and her crew three touring bikes and trailers. Thomas, who completed a cross-country bicycling trip himself back in 1976, was on hand for the send-off Tuesday, offering last-minute tips and advice.

An elementary education major with a concentration in social studies, Haynes will share experiences from her trip this fall as a student teacher at Cobleskill Elementary School.

She will also chronicle her adventures throughout the 11-week journey on the blog:


SUNY Oneonta

May 28, 2013

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