June 18, 2013

Limestone's Loewen Named CC Athlete of the Year

from press release

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- For the third straight year, and four of the last five, Limestone Athletics has produced a Conference Carolinas Athlete of the Year as senior lacrosse attack Riley Loewen (Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada) becomes just the second Saint to win the award on the men's side as announced by the league on Tuesday, June 18.

Loewen is not only the second straight men's winner for Limestone but is also the second consecutive men's lacrosse player to accomplish the feat, joining 2012-13 teammate and senior faceoff specialist Jake Ternosky (LaFayette, N.Y.). Last season Ternosky shared the award with women's soccer standout Ashley Alderin-Fleagle, becoming the first pair in program history to sweep the awards and just the fourth time in league history since the award was instituted in 1995-96.

"What a tremendous honor for Riley and our entire Athletics Department," said President Walt Griffin. "With this being the fifth Limestone student-athlete to be so honored in as many years, it is truly representative of the high academic and athletic traditions that Limestone has worked so hard to develop."

Loewen closes out his collegiate career with the highest individual award the league can bestow, earned after producing a truly landmark year. Among his individual accomplishments this season were being just one of 13 players to be named a United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association First-Team All-American, which marked the third time in his career he has been named an All-American after Second-Team recognition in each of the past two years.

That award would be just the tip of the iceberg as he became just the seventh USILA Scholar All-American in program history, earned his second consecutive Conference Carolinas Men's Lacrosse Scholar-Athlete of the Year honor with a 3.5 GPA, second Conference Carolinas Player of the Year recognition in three years and was an All-Conference Carolinas First-Team selection for the third straight season and All-Conference for the fourth consecutive year.

In addition to his many awards, Loewen rewrote the Saints record book, becoming the program's all-time leading goal scorer with 184 and finished his career with 269 points, just five shy of the all-time mark. On the year he led the team with 54 goals, 36 assists and 90 points to go along with 44 groundballs and 10 man-up scores.

Nationally, he finished third in points per game (5.0), sixth in goals per game (3.0), 10th in shot percentage (.470) and 11th in assists per game (2.0) all while leading Limestone men's lacrosse to a stellar 16-2 overall record, No. 2 national ranking and Conference Carolinas Regular Season and Tournament titles. He also picked up a pair of Conference Carolinas Player of the Week honors, driving his career total to five such honors.

With Ternosky earning Male Athlete of the Year last year, Limestone has now won consecutive men's awards and becomes just the third program to accomplish that feat. Pfeiffer (2001-02 and 2002-03) and Barton (2005-06 and 2006-07) are the only other ones to achieve that mark on the men's side. This follows back-to-back wins by the Saints on the women's side the past two years. That was just the second time that had happened since the league began presenting the award in 1995-96 with Coker, which won the first four awards, accomplishing the feat from 1995-99.

"We are very proud of what Riley has been able to accomplish both on and off the field," said Limestone Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Mike Cerino. "To be considered the best among your peers is an honor not to be taken lightly and Limestone has now had this distinction five times among the last 10 award winners. Truly an accomplishment to be proud of."

Over the last five years, the Saints have now claimed half of the league's Athlete of the Year award winners with three coming on the women's side and two on the men's.

Conference Carolinas Female and Male Athletes of the Year are voted on by the conference's 12 Athletics Directors. This prestigious award is presented annually to both a male and female student-athlete in recognition of their outstanding athletic contributions and achievement.

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