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Eastern Warriors top Little East Conference in athletics and academics

Published on July 06, 2022

Eastern Warriors top Little East Conference in athletics and academics

Student-athletes win consecutive LEC Commissioner’s and Presidents’ Cups

LEC Cups

Left to right: LEC Commissioner's Cup, NCAA DIII championship baseball trophy, and LEC President's Cup.

Following the success of its NCAA Division III national championship baseball team, the Warriors at Eastern Connecticut State University concluded the 2021-22 academic year winning the Little East Conference’s (LEC) two top honors for overall athletic and academic performances.

For five years running, Eastern student-athletes won the LEC Commissioner’s Cup for athletics, and for the third consecutive year, they won the LEC Presidents’ Cup for achieving the highest average GPA among the league’s nine primary member institutions that compete in its 21 championship sports.

Commissioner’s cup

The Warriors captured the 2021-22 LEC Commissioner’s Cup after accumulating a point average of 7.63 among their 19 programs. Eastern claimed the top spot in the league in baseball, softball, men’s golf, men’s soccer, and scored second-place points in the conference in women’s basketball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s swimming, men’s indoor track & field and women’s outdoor track & field. No team from Eastern finished lower than fifth this season.

“I am so proud of our student-athletes for their continued excellence on the playing field,” said Eastern President Dr. Elsa Núñez. “To win the LEC Commissioner’s Cup for the fifth time in a row is a wonderful tribute to their talents, their hard work and the support of their coaches.  It brings great honor and recognition to our University and reflects our commitment to excellence in all we do at Eastern.  Go Warriors!”

Director of Athletics Lori Runksmeier added “Eastern athletics has a long and proud tradition of success. Winning the LEC Commissioner’s Cup for the fifth year in a row is a result of the hard work our student-athletes and coaches have put in this year, and is a testament to the support athletics receives from the University.”

 “Congratulations to President Elsa Núñez, Lori Runksmeier and her staff, and the Eastern Connecticut student-athletes. It is an incredible accomplishment to win the Commissioner’s Cup for the fifth year in a row in the highly-competitive Little East Conference,” said LEC Commissioner Dr. Pamela S. Samuelson. “All members of Warriors Athletics continue to produce quality programs in which student-athletes achieve at a high level.”

Presidents’ Cup

Eastern student-athletes took home the LEC Presidents’ Cup for the third consecutive year — and a league-record seventh time overall — with a 3.34 average cumulative GPA among its 19 programs that compete in the LEC in the 2021-22 academic year.

“I am so proud of our student-athletes, coaches and support staff,” said Runksmeier. “Division III is all about balance, striving for excellence in the classroom and in competition. For Eastern to win the Presidents' Cup seven times in its 13-year history is a testament to the tradition of academic excellence within the department.”

“I am ecstatic that our student-athletes are once again the top academic performers in the Little East Conference,” said President Núñez. “Year after year I am impressed by their performance in the classroom just as much as their performance on the field. Three consecutive years with conference-high GPAs is a testament to the culture of our Warriors athletic teams, as well as the commitment of individual players to prioritize their studies so they can become career-ready individuals.”

Eastern had 17 of its 19 teams earn an average cumulative GPA of at least 3.00, 16 of which had an average cumulative GPA of at least 3.20, including 11 teams with an average cumulative GPA above 3.40 and six that sport an average cumulative GPA over 3.50. The women’s track & field programs posted a department-best 3.61 average cumulative GPA; the top men’s team was cross country with a 3.47 average cumulative GPA.


The NCAA Division III Little East Conference consists of nine primary institutions from all six New England states, including: Castleton University (Vermont), Eastern Connecticut State University, Keene State College (NH), UMass Boston, UMass Dartmouth, Plymouth State University (NH), Rhode Island College, University of Southern Maine and Western Connecticut State University.

Written by Michael Rouleau