Henning earns IWLCA Regional Coach of the Year honor

WATERVILLE, Maine -- With a third New England Small College Athletic Conference championship plaque in the Colby College trophy room, head coach Karen Henning was honored Wednesday as the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Pilgrim Region Coach of the Year.

The IWLCA breaks the New England Region into two groups because of the high number of teams in the area. Wesleyan University head coach Kim Williams, a three-year assistant coach under Henning at Colby, was honored as the Berkshire Region Coach of the Year.

Henning and the Mules won their third NESCAC title in 10 years by defeating three NCAA tourney teams in Wesleyan, Middlebury College, and Trinity College. After an overtime win over the Cardinals in a quarterfinal game, Colby won 10-9 against Middlebury in a semifinal game on the Panthers' home field. The Mules came back the next day for a 13-9 victory in the title game against Trinity.

The Mules had a 2-3 overall start and were 0-2 in the NESCAC, but Colby (15-4 overall) turned the season around and won 13 straight games to earn a tie with three other teams at 8-2 in the final regular season league standings.

Henning has a 135-47 record in 10 years at Colby and 238-68 for her coaching career. She has helped the Mules to eight NCAA berths, including four quarterfinal appearances.  

Henning led the program to NESCAC titles in 2008 and 2009. The Mules fell in the title game in 2010 and 2011. She also earned regional coaching honors in 2008 and 2009.

Henning was IWLCA Division II National Coach of the Year after leading C.W. Post to championships in the 2001 and 2007 seasons. She was an assistant coach for Dartmouth College in 1998 and 1999 when the Big Green won two Ivy League titles and had two NCAA appearances.

A University of Maryland graduate, Henning was an attacker and helped the Terrapins to national titles in 1995 and 1996. She was a student assistant coach in 1997 when Maryland won another championship.