GORHAM, Maine – In celebration of National Girls & Women in Sports Day, the University of Southern Maine Huskies Department of Athletics is hosting nearly 100 Girls Scouts of Maine for a day full of events, leadership activities and game day presentations on Saturday, February 9, 2019. Created in 1987, National Girls and Women in Sports Day (NGWSD) is an event that acknowledges the accomplishments of female athletes, and the positive influence of sports participation on girls and women. The 2019 theme for National Girls and Women in Sports Day is "Lead Her Forward" and Huskies' athletics under the leadership of Associate Athletic Director and Senior Woman Administrator Kimberly Turner has organized a variety of events for the 18 Girls Scouts of Maine troops expected to be in attendance. USM's NGWSD events are intended to expose young women to the benefits of overall health and wellness of athletics participation, and to the advantages and day-to-day routines of a college student-athlete.
"USM student-athletes excel in each area of the Division III philosophy – academics, athletics, service-to-community, and personal and professional growth. The women that make up 50 percent of our student-athlete body are some of the strongest and most capable leaders on campus and on-and-off the field of competition," said Turner. "Through the Lead Her Forward initiative, we hope these young women can establish the life-long habits that build success through participation in sport and wellness, and identify USM student-athlete mentors so that they too can push forward toward achieving their potential."
During the morning, the Girls Scouts will participate in team-building exercises and sports clinics hosted by the Huskies' women's basketball, cheering, soccer and volleyball teams. Participants will then tour the University's athletic facilities and engage in presentations ranging from Sports Psychology, Academics, Athletic Training and Strength and Conditioning. USM will also host a luncheon with the Girl Scouts of Maine which will feature a Question & Answer session with senior softball captain Brooke Cross (Saco, Maine/Thornton Academy). Cross, an All-Little East Conference outfielder for Southern Maine, is a two-time William B. Wise Scholar Athlete, and was a participant in the 2018 NCAA Career in Sports Forum last spring.
Following their luncheon, participants will then be hosted by the Huskies' women's basketball and women's ice hockey teams during their home contests. Women's basketball faces Castleton University in a Little East Conference match-up at 1 p.m. in Hill Gymnasium, while women's ice hockey takes on New England Hockey Conference opponent New England College at 1 p.m. in the USM Ice Arena. During halftime of the women's basketball game, fans will be entertained by the Girl Scouts of Maine as they perform a cheering routine.
In addition to the NGWSD festivities, Huskies' men's and women's basketball, and the women's ice hockey team will be celebrating senior day and honoring the departing members of their respective programs, and the USM Dance Team will perform at halftime of the men's basketball game. Women's ice hockey seniors Britney Evangelista (North Smithfield, Rhode Island), Jensen Hamblett (Colchester, Vermont), and Joanna Scheidegger (Lyss, Switzerland), women's basketball seniors Kimberly Howrigan (Fairfield, Vermont/Bellows Free Academy), Alexa Srolovitz (Montreal, Quebec/New Hampton School (NH)), and Seve Deery-DeRaps (Rangeley, Maine/Rangeley Lakes Regional) and men's basketball seniors Christian McCue (Hampden, Maine/Hampden Academy), Avaughn Brown (Hartford, Conn.), Sean Jany (Westbrook, Maine) and Grayson Waterman (Berwick, Maine/Noble) which each be honored prior to their respective games.
USM's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee will also be honored for its National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators Josten's Award for Community Service during halftime of the men's basketball game with a special presentation from Southern Maine Director of Athletics Al Bean. USM's SAAC won the nation's top prize from NADIIIAA for its Special Olympics activities, and was awarded a third place trophy for its Array of Projects.