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Field Hockey Joins the MAAC

By Tom O'Brien
By Tom O'Brien

Bryant Field Hockey Joins MAAC as Associate Member

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Bryant University Athletics is pleased to announce that its Division I field hockey program will compete in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Field Hockey League beginning in the fall of 2013. The MAAC recently announced the addition of field hockey as an associate sport sponsored by the Edison, N.J.-based conference.

Bryant will join fellow Northeast Conference members Robert Morris and Sacred Heart in competing in the MAAC, joining current full-time members Rider, Siena, Monmouth and Quinnipiac to form an eight-team field hockey league. Fairfield will join the league in field hockey in 2015.

"With the ever-changing landscape of conference affiliations, this is a great opportunity for our field hockey program to compete for a conference championship and NCAA bid," said Bryant Director of Athletics Bill Smith. "This affiliation will allow our student-athletes to continue to compete against familiar rivals and strengthen field hockey in the Northeast region."

Bryant, a full-time member of the Northeast Conference (NEC), qualified for the NEC Tournament in its first year eligible in field hockey in 2010.  The Bulldogs' men's swimming & diving team is also an associate member of the MAAC, competing in the conference championships for the first time this past winter.

With the departure of Monmouth and Quinnipiac to the MAAC, only four field hockey member institutions remained in the NEC.  A conference must have a minimum of six Division I programs to remain eligible for an automatic qualification into the NCAA tournament.