BOSTON, Mass. - Graduate students Lauren McDonald (Catonsville, Md./Catonsville) and Joe Sherburne (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) have been selected as two of the six finalists for the America East's Woman and Man of the Year award, the conference announced Wednesday afternoon. The other finalists are Kyle Gronostaj from UAlbany and Michael Watts of Stony Brook on the men's side, and Tara Belinsky of UAlbany and Brooke Pettis of Binghamton on the women's side.
McDonald has been a four-year fixture on the field for the Retrievers, accumulating 133 career goals, which ranks sixth overall in program history. The graduate student, who earned her bachelor degree in three years, led the Retrievers in 2017 with a program-record 62 goals and has produced double-digit scoring in all four seasons at UMBC, while also being named to the America East All-Conference Second Team twice in her career. In the classroom, the current Geography and Environmental Systems master's student is a three-time America East All-Academic Team selection, the first in UMBC women's lacrosse history and 11th in America East, and earned IWLCA Academic and ECAC Spring President's Honor Roll honors a year ago. McDonald was named an Outstanding Female Senior Athlete at this year's Grittys and earned the Matt Skalsky Scholar-Athlete Award in 2018.
Sherburne played in and started in more game than any other basketball player in school history. He also has played more minutes than any other Retriever and finished 38th in the nation by playing over 1,242 minutes in his final season. He amassed 1,563 career points and buried 266 treys, ranking sixth and second respectively on the school's all-time lists. Moreover, the Wisconsin-native became the first UMBC Division I player to record 1500 points, 600 caroms, and 200 assists in a career and was invited to participate in the 2019 Dos Equis National Championship at the Final Four weekend in Minneapolis. An America East First-Team member in his final season, the financial economics graduate became the first UMBC and America East men's basketball player to be named to the Academic All America® Division I Men's Basketball First Team in 2017-18, and was named the 2018-19 Academic All-America Team Member of the Year and chosen as the America East's men's basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Sherburne is also the first UMBC men's basketball player to earn America East All-Academic Team honors in three consecutive seasons and is just the seventh in America East history.
The award recognizes the conference's senior male and female student-athlete who has best distinguished himself and herself throughout their collegiate career in the areas of academic achievement, athletic excellence, service and leadership. The winner will be announced on June 6 at the conference's annual award dinner.
To be nominated, student-athletes must have completed intercollegiate eligibility in their
primary sport by the end of the 2019 spring season or received their undergraduate degree prior to the conclusion of the summer 2019 term and have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.500 (4.000 scale). Institutions are permitted to submit up to two nominees for each award if at least one is an international or ethnic minority student-athlete.