Courtesy: MAAC Sports

MAAC Announces Aer Lingus Women's Basketball Coaches Promotional Tour

Courtesy:  MAAC Sports
Release:  May 09, 2017

EDISON, NJ- The Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), in conjunction with Aer Lingus, and Sports Changes Life, will hold women's basketball clinics in Ireland this month as part of the ongoing efforts to promote women's basketball overseas.

Four MAAC Women's Basketball Coaches, Tricia Fabbri, Quinnipiac University, Lynn Milligan, Rider University, Pat Coyle, Saint Peter's University, and Ali Jaques, Siena College will be representing the MAAC on this upcoming trip.  In addition to the four coaches, MAAC Senior Associate Commissioner, Jessica Hegmann & Director of Women's Basketball Operations, Alexis Wayne, will be traveling to three cities throughout Ireland during the week of May 15-19. 

The coaches will be hosting clinics for young players and coaches in the cities of Dublin, Belfast, and Cork.  The Aer Lingus Women's Basketball Coaching Clinics are beginning of a series of community outreach events to help promote women's basketball in Ireland and to also raise awareness for the upcoming Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic being held this December. 

“The MAAC is privileged to work with Sports Changes Life and Aer Lingus in sponsoring these clinics,” notes MAAC Commissioner, Rich Ensor.  “I want to thank the coaches for donating their time and energy to this effort.  It is quite a group of coaches with Coach Fabbri coming off a Sweet 16 run in the 2017 NCAA Tournament, and Coach Milligan being awarded the MAAC and Met Basketball Coach of the Year.  They are all committed to providing young women with opportunities to succeed in academics and athletics.”

“Basketball Ireland is delighted to support this new initiative to promote our great sport in a most positive way. We welcome our American colleagues to our shores and hope that their enthusiasm will inspire growing participation and interest in our sport throughout the island of Ireland.” – Bernard J. O'Byrne, Secretary General, Basketball Ireland

The MAAC, in partnership with the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame and Sport Changes Life Foundation, will be hosting the Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic Men's Basketball Tournament on December 1 and 2.  Participating teams include Manhattan College, La Salle University, Towson University and College of the Holy Cross. To purchase tickets to the Belfast Classic, visit the SSE Arena's website at http://www.ssearenabelfast.com/

“Aer Lingus is honored to be working with the Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic, Sport Changes Life, and the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference on this historic and impactful community event,” notes VP of Aer Lingus North America, Jack Foley.  “We look forward to hosting athletes, friends, families, and coaches on board our flights, and encouraging basketball players in Ireland to continue to find fulfillment through education and sport.”

The MAAC prides itself on continuing to grow and support both Men's and Women's Basketball.  Along with Siena College, the MAAC will serve as the host for the 2018 & 2019 Women's NCAA Basketball Regional as well as the 2020 NCAA Men's Basketball First & Second Rounds, all held at the Times Union Center in Albany, NY.  In addition, along with Canisius College and Niagara University, the MAAC will co-host the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball First & Second Rounds, being held at the KeyBank Center in Buffalo, NY. 

 Coaches Quotes:

Tricia Fabbri, Quinnipiac University: “Rich Ensor and the MAAC office continues to the big time!  Basketball is a global sport and I am equally excited and honored to represent Quinnipiac University and our conference along with joining Patty, Ali, and Lynn in teaching the game we all love in Ireland!”

Lynn Milligan, Rider University: “This is another example of how the MAAC ‘gets it'.  To have the opportunity to travel with amazing coaches and share our love for women's basketball together in this format is an incredible opportunity.  We are looking forward to representing our universities and the MAAC.” 

Pat Coyle, Saint Peter's University: “The partnership between the MAAC and Sport Changes Life Foundation is a win-win for all on both sides of the Atlantic. Having witnessed first-hand the impact the Sport Changes Life Foundation has had on young lives I am grateful for the opportunity to be associated with this meaningful foundation.  As Coaches, we have the awesome responsibility to influence young people in such a meaningful way through sports.”

Ali Jaques, Siena College: “This is a tremendous opportunity to bring two great organizations together through basketball.  Sports and athletics can always be a unifier and I am extremely grateful to be a part of this trip.  The three coaches that I am lucky enough to travel with are knowledgeable, experienced, and highly successful.  It's just another example of how the MAAC thinks bigger and promotes growth through athletics.” 

About Sport Changes Life: 

The primary goal of the Sport Changes Life Foundation is to provide an opportunity for raising the aspiration of young people on both sides of the Atlantic so that they can live out their dreams and guide them as sport changes their lives. We are a sports foundation built on inspiration, hope and victory. SCL works in disadvantaged communities to help young people find a path to a brighter future with the help of our international student-athletes, the Victory Scholars. In February 2016, SCL formally partnered with Rory McIlroy charity the Rory Foundation, as both foundations strive together to help change the lives of young people on the island of Ireland and beyond.

About Aer Lingus

Aer Lingus is the national airline of Ireland, founded in 1936. It operates 62 aircraft on routes across Europe and North America carrying 12 million guests per annum. Aer Lingus' mission is to be the leading value carrier operating on the North Atlantic. It is the only airline operating between the United States and Ireland, which has a 4-Star rating (as awarded by Skytrax, the international air transport rating organization). Aer Lingus is a member of International Airlines Group (IAG), one of the world's largest airline groups.

About the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference: 

With 11 institutions strongly bound by the sound principles of quality and integrity in academics and excellence in athletics, the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) is in its 36th year of competition during the 2016-2017 academic year. Current conference members include: Canisius College, Fairfield University, Iona College, Manhattan College, Marist College, Monmouth University, Niagara University, Quinnipiac University, Rider University, Saint Peter's University, and Siena College.

About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame

Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the city where basketball was invented, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate and high school, for both men and women on the global stage.

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