Saint Michael's Athletics Continues Making Upgrades to Facilities, Staffing

Saint Michael's Athletics Continues Making Upgrades to Facilities, Staffing

COLCHESTER, Vt. - When the COVID-19 pandemic began affected the college sports landscape more than two years ago, the Saint Michael's College Department of Athletics was already amid improving its infrastructure in an effort to bolster the experience of its student-athletes, and additional strides have been made since.

From promoting nearly half a dozen part-time coaches to full-time status to upgrading and enhancing existing facilities, Saint Michael's Athletics continues moving ahead. Fans who want to wear their Purple Knight Pride now even have a new way to find merchandise, as the College's first online store tailored to Athletics has debuted through BSN SPORTS.

Since late 2019, five head coaches have become full-time members of the Athletics staff. Chris Donovan, Eileen Hall, Gus MacLeod '02 and Molly Peters were all elevated to full-time status, while Jim Neidlinger was hired as the baseball program's first full-time head coach in November 2019. Donovan recently completed his 22nd season as women's ice hockey head coach, while Peters, who has worked at the College since 2006, guides the men's and women's cross country and Nordic skiing programs. Hall finished her 12th winter leading the men's and women's swimming & diving teams this winter, while MacLeod capped his 12th school year as Alpine skiing head coach.

Athletic Training added another full-time professional in fall 2020, with Cassandra Bushey serving as the department's fourth veteran athletic trainer. Ryan Garrow became the College's first full-time strength & conditioning coach in March 2020, utilizing the Varsity Weight Room to help student-athletes reach their physical peak, before recently departing after a two-year tenure.

New NEVCO scoreboards can be found on Duffy Field and at baseball's Doc Jacobs Field, and Daktronics was employed for new scoreboards in the Ross Sports Center gymnasium and natatorium, and hardwired lacrosse shot clocks at Duffy Field. During the coming months, Saint Michael's Athletics will see its first permanent outdoor lights installed on Duffy Field, courtesy of Musco Lighting. A new rod-iron gate welcomes visitors to the Doc Jacobs Field Complex, funded primarily through the annual Purple Knights Golf Classic, which returns next June. Baseball debuted a tarp and memorial dedicated to the late Chris Loche '92 in 2022, and a renovated conference space in the Tarrant Recreation Center now honors legendary women's basketball head coach and long-time administrator Sue Duprat.

Many of these projects were completed thanks in large part to a collaborative effort between the Department of Athletics and College Director of Facilities Joel Ribout.