William Smith College Basketball Head Coach Olympia Scott-Richardson and first-year guard Marisa Vespa (Immaculate Heart/Watertown, N.Y.) headlined the 2005 All-Liberty League teams, earning Coaching Staff of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors, respectively.
Vespa also garnered first-team recognition, while junior Pria Young (Council Rock/Richboro, Pa.) and first-year Stephanie Czajkowski (Bishop Ludden/Syracuse, N.Y.) were honorable mention selections.
Scott-Richardson, assisted by Lindsay Drury and Charlie Evangelista, led the Herons to a 16-7 overall record and their first regular season conference title since 2000. Setting a new record for wins by a first-year William Smith basketball coach, Scott-Richardson joined the Herons in September and has guided a team with just two seniors and nine underclassmen to its best season since 2001-02.
A five-time Liberty League Rookie of the Week honoree, Vespa leads the Herons in scoring (11.1 ppg) and assists (5.3 apg), and is second in steals (2.7 spg). Her 5.3 assists per game also ranks 19th in Division III women’s basketball. Scoring double figures in 14 of her 23 games, Vespa dropped in a career-high 21 points in a win over Nazareth. A deft passer as well, Vespa posted her first career double double with 12 points and 10 assists in a win over Union. She had at least five assists in 13 games this season.
A strong defensive presence on the court, Young leads the team in steals (2.8 spg) and is third in scoring (8.3 ppg). Named the Liberty League Guard of the Week for the week of Jan. 16, Young posted a season-high 17 points at St. Lawrence, including a pair of three pointers in the final 1:24 to lift the Herons to a 56-54 victory. She matched that total again four days later in a win over Elmira. For her career, Young has played in every game and is averaging 9.4 points per game and 2.3 steals per game.
Starting in 18 games her rookie season, Czajkowski leads the team in rebounds (5.9 rpg) and is second in scoring (9.7 ppg). She closed out the regular season against Vassar with a career-high 20 points in just 25 minutes of action. A solid rebounder, Czajkowski grabbed nine boards four different times during the season, just missing a double double twice.