CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - America East Commissioner Patrick Nero announced today that Binghamton University’s Jacqueline Kane (volleyball), Boston University’s Sarah Hudak (field hockey) and Stony Brook University's Dana Hastie (cross country/track & field) have been named finalists for the 2008 America East Woman of the Year award. The honor recognizes the conference’s senior female student-athlete who best exemplifies a commitment to service, leadership, athletics and academics during her collegiate career.

Kane, a political science and English major with a 3.69 grade-point average, was a three-time first-team All-America East selection and also earned honorable mention accolades in 2004. She led the Bearcats to the America East title in 2005 and was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. The 2007-08 Binghamton Female Athlete of the Year, Kane was also tabbed her team’s most valuable player this season.

On top of her athletic accomplishments, Kane was named the America East Volleyball Scholar-Athlete this past season and was a member of the All-Academic squad each of the past two years. She was a member of Binghamton’s Dean’s List and America East’s Commissioner’s Honor Roll all four years. Kane was honored with the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence and the Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports-Scholars Award in 2007 and was also an ECAC Merit Medal recipient. Kane served as the President of Sigma Tau Delta (International English Honor Society) in 2007-08 and was also a member of Pi Sigma Alpha (National Political Science Honor Society), Chi Alpha Sigma (National College Athlete Honor Sociey) and Sigma Alpha Lambda (National Leadership/Honors Organization).

Hudak, who earned a Master of Science degree in occupational therapy with a 3.64 GPA, was an NFHCA All-America selection this past season. The 2007 America East Defensive Player of the Year, Hudak led the Terriers to their third straight conference title and a victory over Iowa in the first round of the NCAA Championship. A two-time all-conference selection, Hudak received first-team honors in 2007 and was also named to the All-ECAC first team.

Off the field, Hudak was tabbed an Academic All-American by the NFHCA and was the America East Field Hockey Scholar-Athlete. She was named to the All-Academic squad in 2006 and 2007 and is a member of the America East Commissioner’s Honor Roll. In the community, Hudak volunteers for numerous causes, including the Parkinson’s Wellness Community Wellness group at Sargent College, autistic children in Boston’s Public School system and the rehabilitation department at Newton-Wellesley Hospital. She was also active in Boston University’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, the University’s Student Occupational Therapy Association and was a student delegate at America Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) annual conference this year.

Hastie, a multidisciplinary studies major with a 3.78 GPA, earned All-Northeast Region honors in cross country each of past two seasons and helped the Seawolves capture the 2007 team title. She placed third and sixth at the 2006 and 2005 meets, respectively, to earn all-conference recognition. In track & field, Hastie placed second in the 5,000-meter run at both the America East Indoor and Outdoor Championships to garner all-league honors. She will also compete in the 10,000-meter run at the NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa on Thursday.

In addition to her athletic achievements, Hastie has been named to the USTFCCCA and America East All-Academic teams, has been on the Commissioner’s Honor Roll every semester and is a two-time recipient of the SUNY Chancellor’s Scholar-Athlete Award. Additionally, she served an executive board member for SAAC and was a student commencement speaker, the first Stony Brook student-athlete in school history to gain the honor. Hastie, who received the Society of Distinguished Student-Athlete Award, also served as President of Brothers and Sisters and Christ (BASIC) and has been active with Read Across America.

The three finalists were selected from a pool of the nine America East institutional nominations, which were announced on Tuesday, May 20. To be nominated, student-athletes must have earned a varsity letter in an NCAA-sponsored sport and competed during the 2007-08 academic year, completed intercollegiate eligibility in her primary sport by the end of the 2008 spring season or received her undergraduate degree prior to the conclusion of the spring 2008 term and have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.500 (4.000 scale).

In conjunction with the changes in the nomination process for the NCAA Woman of the Year award, the America East Woman of the Year award was established for the 2005-06 athletic season. Beginning in 2006, the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics (CWA) started receiving conference-designated nominees in lieu of the previous institution- and state-based nomination format.

The 2008 America East Woman of the Year will be announced via release on the conference website on Wednesday, June 18.

The America East Woman of the Year will then be forwarded to the NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee. The selection committee will select the top 10 winners in each NCAA division (I, II and III). From among those 30 honorees, the selection committee will determine the top three in each division. Finally, the members of the CWA will vote from among the top nine to determine the 2008 NCAA Woman of the Year.

For the latest news regarding the America East Woman of the Year, including past winners, log on to the conference’s official website www.AmericaEast.com.