LANCASTER, Pa. – Franklin & Marshall's Vanessa Budd was named the 2017 Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association's (IWLCA) Defender of the Year for Division III, announced at the All-American banquet on Saturday evening. Budd was also announced as a nominee for the 2017 DIII Honda Woman Athlete of the Year for lacrosse.
The Defender of the Year nod marks the first time a member of the program earned the accolade. Budd is designated as one of 11 finalists for the prestigious DIII Honda Woman Athlete of the Year award, which is voted on by national balloting among 1,000 NCAA member schools as part of the Collegiate Women Sports Award program, now in its 41st year.
The winners in each of their respective divisions will be named during a live telecast by CBS Sports on June 26, 2017 at 9:00 p.m. EST, in downtown Los Angeles. Budd is looking to become just the second Diplomat in program history to earn the award, following Jen Pritchard in 2009.
Budd (Darien, Conn. / Darien) became just the fifth F&M women's lacrosse player to earn All-America recognition three times in her career after garnering a spot on the First Team earlier this postseason. Her impressive senior year accolades also included a place on the All-Metro Region First Team for the third straight year, collecting the second Centennial Conference (CC) Defensive Player of the Year award of her career, and also being named to the All-CC First Team for the third consecutive season. Budd started in all 22 of the team's games and caused a CC-best 32 turnovers while leading F&M with 30 ground balls.
The Diplomats claimed their seventh Centennial Conference (CC) Crown and 12th overall Conference Championship while advancing to the NCAA Sweet 16 for the fifth straight year and winning 15 or more games for the 11th time in the last 12 years after compiling a 17-5 overall record.