Stellar Seasons

Liberty League Championships, NCAA berths, All-American status, and Academic All-America plaudits

Published Jun. 12, 2017

With ample successes in the classroom and in the field of play, the RIT Athletics program has enjoyed unparalleled success during the 2016-17 season. From Liberty League Championships to NCAA berths, to All-American status, and Academic All-America plaudits, RIT’s 675 student-athletes have had plenty to celebrate this year. Here is a glimpse of what was accomplished through May 2017. For updates, go to

Liberty League All-Academic (Fall/Winter/Spring)

  • Tigers had 207 student-athletes (55 from fall, 32 in winter, and 120 during the spring) earn Liberty League All-Academic honors. Student-athletes must be a sophomore or higher in class standing and have a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.30.
  • In addition, 31 non-Liberty League student-athletes (wrestling, men’s and women’s hockey) were honored as All-Academic selections from their leagues.
  • During the 2016 fall semester, RIT’s 675 student-athletes enjoyed a cumulative GPA of 3.31, highest in program history. Forty-eight student-athletes enjoyed a 4.0 GPA.


Men’s Cross Country

  • James Bailey earned All-American, All-Atlantic Region and All-Liberty League Second Team honors, and second straight USTFCCCA All-Academic honor.
  • Jon Pelzar earned All-Liberty League First Team honors, All-Atlantic Region accolades and competed at the NCAA Championships.

Women’s Cross Country

  • Emma Jones became first All-American in program history and earned All-Liberty League First Team and All-Atlantic Region honors.
  • Jones, Becca Schwan and Jennifer Crossen earned USTFCCCA All-Academic honors.


Sarah Szybist playing volleyball.

Sarah Szybist

  • Sarah Szybist named the CoSIDA Academic All-America of the Year; the second Tiger student-athlete in school history to receive that honor.
  • Szybist, the Liberty League Player of the Year, was a four-time AVCA All-American and All-Liberty League first-team pick. She led Division III with 770 kills and finished career with 2,563 kills, sixth all-time in NCAA history.

Men’s Soccer

  • Three All-Liberty League selections, including Scott Fishel, Peter Cinibulk and Will Schiesswohl.
  • Fishel was a CoSIDA Academic All-District pick for a second time.

Women’s Soccer

Three All-Liberty League selections, including Emily Thiel, Lauren Chester and Riley Yankowich.


Men’s Basketball

  • A.J. Horde became the 21st player in program history to surpass 1,000 career points.
  • Head Coach Bob McVean was inducted into the Wendy’s College Classic Hall of Fame.

Women’s Basketball

Group shot of women's basketball team

Women’s basketball celebrates 2017 Liberty League championship.

  • Tigers won their first Liberty League Championship and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time.
  • Cori Okada named Liberty League Tournament Most Valuable Player and an All-Liberty League First Team selection.
  • Ashlynn Palmitesso and Jessica Glaz joined the 1,000-point club.

Men’s Hockey

  • Adam Brubacher named the 2017 Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Year.
  • Brady Norrish earned All-Atlantic Hockey Second Team honors.

Women’s Hockey

  • Mackenzie Stone named the 2017 CHA Defensive Forward of the Year.
  • Caitlin Wallace won 2017 CHA Individual Sportsmanship Award.

Men’s Swimming and Diving

Tigers placed third at Liberty League Championship and broke 400-yard medley relay school mark.

Women’s Swimming and Diving

  • Sophomores Amy Adams and Sedera Zbranak went to the 2017 NCAA Swimming and Diving Championship.
  • Tigers placed third at Liberty League Championship and fourth at UNYSCSA Championship, breaking nine RIT records.


  • Tory Cain, Dempsey King, and Sam Weinger went to the 2017 NCAA Division III Wrestling Championship.
  • Cain, King, Nicholas Greenquist and Weinger named NWCA Scholar All-Americans.
  • RIT dedicated the Ronald S. Ricotta Wrestling Locker Room.



  • Will Gorman named the RIT Co-Senior Male Athlete of the Year. He broke 37-year-old RIT career records in home runs and runs batted in.
  • Tigers won first Liberty League Championship and advanced to NCAA Tournament for first time in program history.
  • Gorman was the Liberty League Player of the Year; Brian Reed named the Pitcher of the Year; Head Coach Rob Grow, the Coach of the Year.
  • Six Tigers earned ABCA All-New York Region honors.
  • Tigers set countless school records, including most wins (33) and winning percentage (.786).


  • Tigers clinch second straight Liberty League postseason berth.
  • Shortstop Erin Guinan named Liberty League Rookie of the Year and was an NFCA All-Region First Team selection.

Men’s Lacrosse

  • Ranked as high as No. 2 in Division III poll; won 12 games against ranked foes.
  • Ryan Lee broke the program record for points in career (294) and became the first Tiger to surpass 300 points.
  • Tigers won sixth-straight Liberty League regular-season championship and advanced to NCAA Tournament for eighth-straight season.
  • RIT advanced to NCAA Championship game for second time in program history and will take on No. 1 Salisbury University at 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 28, at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
  • RIT enters national championship game riding a 15-game winning streak.

Women’s Lacrosse

Junior Emily Livecchi moved into top 5 in scoring at RIT with 179 points and earned All-Liberty League First Team honors and IWLCA All-New York Region Second Team accolades.


Group shot of women's crew with Liberty League banner.

Women’s crew celebrates 2017 Liberty League championship.

Men’s Crew

  • Varsity 8 won first Kate Louise Cup in program history at Head of the Genesee Regatta.
  • Novice 8 boat won gold medal at Liberty League Championships.

Women’s Crew

  • Varsity 8 won gold at Liberty League Championships and led team to first league championship and automatic bid to NCAA Championship.
  • Varsity 8 won Kate Louise Cup at Head of the Genesee Regatta for first time since 2002; placed fifth at prestigious Head of the Charles Regatta.
  • Varsity 8 nationally ranked in the U.S. Rowing/CRCA Poll.

Men’s Track and Field

  • Daniel Giuliano named Liberty League Indoor Rookie of the Year.
  • Matthew Lienhard (60-meter dash) and Curtis Geiger (200 meters) broke indoor school records; Otto Kingstedt (10,000 meters) and 4 x 200-meter relay team broke outdoor records.
  • Kingstedt recorded second fastest time in Division III this season.

Women’s Track and Field

Group shot of women's track.

In February, women’s track and field became first RIT women’s sport to win a Liberty League title.

  • Won 2017 Liberty League Indoor Championship for first time.
  • Jess Calzolari and Emma Jones represented RIT at NCAA Indoor Championship.
  • Calzolari named Liberty League Indoor and Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year.
  • Head Coach David Warth and staff named the Liberty League Coaching Staff of the Year.
  • Tigers broke four indoor school records and a pair of outdoor records.