LANCASTER, Pa. – Paige Messersmith (Phoenix, Md./Dulaney), a senior on the McDaniel field hockey and women's lacrosse teams, has been selected as the Centennial Conference's winner of the 2013 NCAA Woman of the Year award in a balloting of the conference administrators, announced on Thursday.
Messersmith will now be forwarded, along with all of the conference winners, to the Woman of the Year selection committee, who will choose the top 10 honorees from each division. From those 30 candidates, the selection committee will determine the top three in each division. Finally, the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics will vote from among the top nine finalists to determine the 2013 NCAA Woman of the Year.
Messersmith is the Green Terror's first semifinalist for the award since the selection process moved to the conference level. Jill Krebs was the last student-athlete to receive the honor when the awards were determined at the state level. She was selected as the 2002 Maryland NCAA Woman of the Year.
The Woman of the Year is selected based on three key areas – athletic excellence, academic achievement and service and leadership. Each aspect accounts for an equal 28 percent of the overall evaluation of the nominees. A 200-word personal statement about how her community service and experiences as a scholar, an athlete and a leader on her campus and in her community have influenced her life and shaped the person she is today accounts for the final 16 percent of the evaluation.
Messersmith was a four-year letterwinner for both the Green Terror field hockey and women's lacrosse teams. In field hockey, she ranks fourth all-time with 66 points and in the top 10 for both goals and assists. This past fall, she established a new single-season program record for goals (18) and points (45). In lacrosse, she is the conference record holder for draw controls with 300 in her career. She is a four-time all-conference selection and three-time all-region nod. She was named a second-team All-American last week. She led the field hockey team to the ECAC tournament in each of the last two seasons and to the ECAC championship game this spring in women's lacrosse.
Messersmith has earned Dean's List honors, both NFHCA and IWLCA National Academic Squad recognition and Centennial Conference Academic Honor Roll accolades. She volunteers her time in youth clinics for both sports while also serving on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and the Apple Conference for Alcohol Awareness.
She graduated with a 3.62 grade-point average in exercise science and plans to work toward her master's degree in nutrition/public health and business in the fall.