William Smith College senior Emily D’Addario is the inaugural recipient of the Liberty League Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year award. The Heron harrier is also the conference’s NCAA Woman of the Year nominee.
“I am pleased to announce that Emily D’Addario and [RPI diver] Adam Updegrove have been selected as the inaugural recipients of the Liberty League Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards,” Liberty League Commissioner Tracy King said. “The student-athletes in the Liberty League have demonstrated a history of academic achievement, service and leadership as part of their undergraduate experience. Not only have Emily and Adam excelled in their respective sports, they have achieved at the highest levels academically while also emerging as leaders on their campuses. It is only fitting that we recognize the dedication and commitment that they have demonstrated to their academic and athletic pursuits during the past four years.”
D’Addario began her Heron athletic career as a defensive starter for the nationally ranked soccer team. As a first-year, she started 18 of the 19 matches she played in, helping William Smith lead the nation in shutouts (0.8/g) and rank third in goals against average (0.279). The Herons were 14-3-3 in 2009, winning the Liberty League regular season and tournament championships and advancing to the second round of the NCAA tournament. As a sophomore, D’Addario started nine of 11 matches, but was sidelined by an injury that ultimately forced her to change sports. The soccer team went 18-3-3 that season, defending its Liberty League titles and advanced all the way to the NCAA semifinals.
Unable to continue playing soccer, D’Addario looked for an outlet for her competitive drive and took up running, which led to a spot on the Heron cross country team in 2011. She hardly looked like a novice when she toed the start line for her first race, blowing away the field at the SUNYIT Wildcat Invitational with a 5-kilometer course record of 19:25. D’Addario posted another win in the Oswego Invitational the following week and eclipsed another course record to win the Hobart Invitational the week after that. She placed seventh in the NCAA Atlantic Region Championship, earning all-region honors and qualifying for the NCAA National Championship meet. D’Addario finished her first cross country season with five victories, three course records, seven Liberty League Performer of the Week awards and the Liberty League Rookie of the Year award.
As a senior, D’Addario won four more races and broke two more course records.
D’Addario graduated last month with a bachelor’s degree in health sciences. She was a three-time Liberty League All-Academic selection and earned a spot on the 2011 Capital One Academic All-District team. D’Addario was also named a USTFCCCA All-Academic honoree in 2011 and 2012. She was one of only 29 female fall sport student-athletes across all three NCAA Divisions to receive an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship.
A member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, D’Addario double minored in cognition, logic, and language and psychology. She plans to pursue a master’s degree in speech language pathology.
An active member of the campus and Geneva communities, D’Addario completed internships at West Street Elementary School and Geneva General Hospital. She has served on the William Smith Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and the William Smith Core 20 leadership group. D’Addario has volunteered at the Boys and Girls Club of Geneva, the Geneva Community Lunch Program, and through the HWS Days of Service. She also led the marketing committee for the Seneca7, a 77.7-mile relay race around Seneca Lake.
The NCAA established the Woman of the Year Award in 1991 to celebrate the achievements of women in intercollegiate athletics. Now in its 23nd year, the award is unique because it recognizes not only the athletic achievements of outstanding young women, but also their academic achievements, community service and leadership. NCAA member institutions from all three divisions nominate their own woman of the year. To be eligible, these women must have competed and earned a varsity letter in an NCAA-sponsored sport and must have completed eligibility in their primary sport.