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Thurssday, February 9, 2006

Elizabethtown College Alumna Page Lutz ’84 Selected for NCAA Division III 25th Anniversary Team in Women’s Basketball 

Page Lutz '84 drives to the hoop.ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa. --- Page Lutz, a 1984 alumna of Elizabethtown College, is one of only five former student-athletes and one coach in the nation to be honored with selection to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III 25th anniversary women’s basketball team. Announced today, the team is comprised of basketball standouts who represent the strong leadership and outstanding achievements of the millions of student-athletes and coaches who have advanced opportunities for women in NCAA sports.

Lutz was among a group of only 25 players and five coaches from the past 25 years chosen by the NCAA for inclusion on the ballot in an online election that selected the anniversary team. Her teammate Sherri Kinsey, also of the Class of 1984, and Elizabethtown College Head Coach Yvonne Kauffman were also nominated. Voting took place in late December and early January.

During her collegiate career, Lutz was recognized for both strong athletic and academic performance. Several of her career records – including 1,757 total points, 453 free throws made and 651 field goals – still stand at Elizabethtown College more than two decades later. She was named a Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All-American in 1982, 1983 and 1984, and she was named the WBCA Division III Player of the Year in 1984. In 1984, she was named a First Team Academic All-American, and she graduated from Elizabethtown with honors.

During her four years at Elizabethtown, the team ran up a 105-11 record. In 1982, the Blue Jays won the first NCAA Division III national championship in women’s basketball ever contested. Elizabethtown followed the win with second place finishes in 1983 and 1984, with Lutz being selected as the tournaments’ Most Outstanding Player in both of those years.

Honored by her selection to the 25th anniversary team, Lutz attributes her collegiate athletic success to her teammates and the excellent coaching staff at Elizabethtown College. “I always have felt that I was very fortunate to play on a good team,” she said. “It is easy to excel when you have excellent teammates around you on the court and you benefit from strong coaching.”

Page Lutz '84 swats at a shot.Lutz calls her four years at Elizabethtown a defining period in her life. “I had such a positive experience academically and athletically at Elizabethtown College,” she said. “If I had to make the choice again, I would choose Elizabethtown.” Remembering fondly the camaraderie of the Elizabethtown teams of the early 80s, Lutz particularly recalls sharing the court with teammate Sherri Kinsey, saying that they enjoyed an “uncanny ability to anticipate each other’s next move.”

After graduating from Elizabethtown, Lutz went on to teach the next generation of student-athletes as the head girls’ basketball coach at Penn Manor High School for more than a decade.

Women’s basketball is a long-standing tradition at Elizabethtown College, begun in 1928 as one of the College’s original varsity sports. The College and its excellent coaching staff have been pioneers in women’s sports, setting the course toward greater intercollegiate competition and equal treatment for women’s athletics. The College won national championships in women’s basketball in 1982 and 1989, and it was the first program in the nation to win 800 competitions. Elizabethtown compiled more wins in the 20th century than any other intercollegiate women’s basketball program. Head Coach Yvonne Kauffman is one of only three coaches in NCAA Division III women’s basketball to reach 600 career victories.

In 1981, the NCAA began sponsoring women’s championships, which opened the door to increased athlete and academic opportunities for female athletes. Today, the NCAA sponsors 44 women’s championships in 20 sports, providing more than 150,000 women with an opportunity to compete for national titles each year.