GRAND LAKE, Colo. – Junior Steph Colson (Westminster, Md./Manchester Valley) capped an incredible season by being named the top NCAA Division III women's lacrosse player in the country by the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) on Wednesday, June 13.
Colson is the inaugural recipient of the IWLCA Division III Player of the Year award. She is also the first student-athlete from Gettysburg College to be named the top player in his or her respective sport since men's lacrosse player Tommy Kehoe '09 won the Iroquois National Award in 2009.
The junior was also tagged IWLCA Midfielder of the Year and All-America First Team. She becomes the third Bullet to be named top midfielder by the organization and first since Hollis Stahl '10 in 2010. Colson is the 20th IWLCA All-America First Team selection at Gettysburg.
Colson produced a record-breaking season in leading Gettysburg to its second consecutive national title. She piled up a program and Centennial Conference record 140 draw controls, while also leading the team in points (76, tied) and ground balls (53). Colson was also second on the team in goals (50), assists (26), and caused turnovers (25).
The midfielder was at her best in the postseason. She was named Most Valuable Player of the CC Championship after posting three goals, one assist, and nine draw controls in a 15-7 victory over No. 7 Franklin & Marshall College in the title game.
Colson opened the NCAA playoffs with a program-record breaking 14 draw controls against Westfield State University, one of three double-figure draw control outings for the junior. She posted at least six draw controls and two points in every national tournament game. In the finale against fourth-ranked Middlebury College, Colson logged a goal, three assists, three ground balls, and nine draw controls on the way to being named Most Outstanding Performer of the event for the second year in a row.
Colson has accrued ample recognition this spring. She was twice named CC Offensive Player of the Week and was recognized as All-CC First Team and All-Metro Region First Team. Recently, she was selected as the women's lacrosse nominee for the coveted Honda DIII Athlete of the Year award.
For her career, Colson has accumulated 73 goals, 33 assist, 106 points, 81 ground balls, 33 caused turnovers, and 183 draw controls in 46 games. With Colson on the field, Gettysburg has posted a record of 43-3 in those games.
Gettysburg tied the program record with 21 wins with 10 of those decisions coming against teams that finished among the top 25. The Bullets won their third national title overall and competed in the NCAA playoffs for the 18th time in the last 19 seasons.