Husson University's Kenzie Worcester dribbles the ball up the floor during a game last season. Credit: Pete Warner

Husson University of Bangor guard Kenzie Worcester of Washburn and Maine Maritime Academy forward Adam Richardson of Bradley, who were the North Atlantic Conference’s basketball Players of the Year this past season, headline the list of finalists for the conference’s Woman and Man of the Year.

The prestigious award encompasses all facets of the NCAA Division III student-athlete experience and honors graduating student-athletes who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletic excellence, service and leadership.

The NAC Man and Woman of the Year award winners will be announced July 17 and 18, respectively, and will be honored on their campuses during the 2019-20 academic year.

Besides Worcester, the other NAC Woman of the Year finalists are Maine Maritime Academy’s Miranda McIntire of Alna and the University of Maine at Presque Isle’s Mikayla Churchill from Washburn, who were both defenders on their respective soccer teams; University of Maine at Farmington field hockey midfielder Andrea Stemm from Gorham, Thomas College of Waterville field hockey midfielder and softball center fielder Katie Taylor from Lebanon, SUNY-Canton (N.Y.) volleyball standout Peyton Robinson and Northern Vermont-Lyndon basketball-track performer Abby Salvadore.

Joining Richardson on the list of NAC Man of the Year finalists are UMPI baseball shortstop Ryan Sanderson, UMF’s Michael Pingree from Cornish and Thomas College’s Jon Dutka, who were goalkeepers for their respective soccer teams; Northern Vermont-Johnson soccer and tennis player John Folsom and SUNY-Canton lacrosse star Josh Yelvington.

The 5-foot-4 Worcester led the Eagles to four NAC women’s basketball championships and was the tournament’s Most Valuable Player all four years.

Worcester, Husson’s second all-time leading scorer with 1,869 points, led the Eagles in points per game (19), assists (3.2), steals (2) and three-point shooting percentage (39.6).

Worcester graduated with a 3.7 grade-point average in physical therapy and volunteered at several sports therapy clinics while also serving as a youth sports coach and referee.

Churchill, who was a Dean’s List student every semester of her four-year career and posted a 3.88 GPA in business administration, was a captain of the soccer team and started 58 out of 60 games in her time at UMPI. She was involved in the Special Olympics among other activities.

McIntire was a NAC second team all-conference pick in soccer and was a two-year captain. She anchored a Mariner defense that held teams to one goal or less 14 times in 16 games this season including nine shutouts.

She posted a 3.96 GPA in International Business and Logics and won several awards. She did a lot of volunteer work including at the Special Olympics Bocce Tournament.

Stemm was a first team All-NAC midfielder and finished her stellar career with eight goals and 17 assists. She was also an outstanding student and involved in a number of volunteer activities.

Taylor captained the field hockey and softball teams, and was an all-conference selection in both sports. She graduated with a 3.99 GPA.

Robinson graduated with a 4.00 GPA and the all-NAC choice set the school’s single-season (1,310) and career records in assists (4,116).

Salvadore played two years of basketball and was the NAC’s javelin champion. She finished fifth in the javelin at the NCAA Division III Regional championships.

On the men’s side, the 6-foot-4 Richardson led the Mariners in points (18.6) and assists (4.6) per game. He also led the Mariners with a 64.2 shooting percentage from the floor and 45 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.

He earned Dean’s List honors six times, and was selected as the 2019 NAC Men’s Basketball Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year. He was also very active in the community.

UMPI’s Sanderson was the school’s Senior Athlete of the Year, and the Nova Scotian was named honorable mention shortstop on the 2018 Canadian Baseball Network All-Canadian Team. His three triples and 15 runs batted in were team-highs and his two homers shared the team lead.

Dutka posted a 1.07 goals-against average and .786 save percentage to guide Thomas to the NAC title last fall and earned All-NAC honors.

lvington became the first SUNY Canton student athlete to earn All-America honors when he was named to the Division III USILA/Warrior All-America Lacrosse Team this spring. He was NAC Player of the Year.

Pingree was the 2019 UMF Male Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year and was involved in a number of school and community activities.