The Athletic Department will provide a dynamic and progressive environment in which members of the Siena community can take part in competitive and or recreational opportunities while providing its student athletes with a positive environment in which to learn, live, compete and practice.
The athletic department will provide opportunities in which student athletes can share in the Franciscan values of Siena through its Saints in the Community program. The department recognizes the unique place Siena athletics holds in the Capital Region and that it has a responsibility to share its major varsity sports teams with the community.
Athletics will prioritize the competitive opportunities it offers the student athletes in a fair manner. The department will provide recreational and intramural opportunities to all members of the community who desire to participate.
The athletic department will win the right way. Success achieved by taking short cuts or operating outside prescribed requirements-NCAA, Conference, College policy--is a hollow success. As a staff our actions and attitude will serve as examples to our students and teach them that any success worth having should be done the right way.
4. Student Centered
The department's services and efforts will be centered on the student athletes and will assist them in developing to their full academic, athletic and social potential. Student athletes will be given the opportunity to develop skills such as leadership, teamwork, decision-making and organization. We will educate student athletes to the importance of respect, responsibility, accountability and compassion. Our recreational programs will provide the student community a means whereby their social development will continue beyond the classroom experiences.
They started out as the Golden Warriors. That proved too long for headlines, so soon Siena became the Indians. In March of 1989, they became the Saints.
There was a time, not long ago, when the majority of Siena's student athletes hailed from homes in the Capital Region, and jumping in a van and traveling to Saratoga, Troy, Schenectady and Albany could meet athletic teams' scheduling requirements.
In 1976, however, Siena's athletics program was elevated to NCAA Division I status. With that move, the College committed itself to upgrading its program and making all teams competitive.
After stops in the ECAC Metro and North Atlantic Conference, Siena moved to the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) in 1990, where it has made its mark.
Since its move to full Division I status, Siena Athletics has continued to grow. Five years ago, the program added women's water polo, giving it seven men's programs and 11 on the women's side. Athletic success has improved thanks to a continued commitment from the College to enhance athletic aid, full-time coaching and facilities.
Three teams won conference championships in 2006-2007, with volleyball and men's golf earning their second straight bid to the NCAA Tournament. The women's golf program won the MAAC Championship for the seventh straight year, while the upstart men's basketball and women's soccer teams advanced all the way to the MAAC Championship game. Siena's men's lacrosse team enjoyed its best season in over 20 years, winning the MAAC regular-season title and advancing to the conference Tournament for the first time.
The men's basketball team has often carried the torch for the department. In 2002, Siena caught the nation's attention with an improbable leap into college basketball's biggest stage - the NCAA Tournament, highlighting a span in which the team advanced to the postseason four times in five years (1999-2003). It was the team's third trip to the 'Big Dance" (1989, 1999). In its first NCAA appearance, Siena toppled Stanford 80-78 in Greensboro, N.C. in one of the great upsets in NCAA Tournament history. In 2003, Siena made its fifth postseason NIT appearance. The Saints have enjoyed great success in the NIT, advancing as far as the semifinals round at Madison Square Garden in 1994. In 2006-07, the Siena team won 20 games for the 15th time in program history.
The Siena women's basketball team has captured seven regular-season MAAC titles under the direction of Gina Castelli. In 2000-2001, the team earned its first MAAC Tournament championship and initial NCAA berth. The Saints played in the postseason WNIT in 1999, 2002 and 2003.
The volleyball team has one of the richest histories for success, winning six MAAC Championships and advancing to the NCAA Tournament three times. In 2005, the Saints shocked the MAAC by capturing their fifth conference title despite being picked ninth in the preseason coaches' poll. The team repeated its Championship with an upset of top-seed Fairfield in the 2006 MAAC final contested at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex. The team won four-straight MAAC titles from 1993-96 and reached the NCAA Tournament in 1995. In April of 2003, Garvey Pierre took over as the program's first full-time coach helping the Saints make the leap to the next level.
The men's and women's golf teams have also achieved breakthrough success. The men's team repeated its MAAC Championship in 2007, advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in as many years. The women won their seventh straight MAAC Championship at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex in 2007, knocking off rival Fairfield.
The Siena baseball team has won four MAAC Championships since 1995 and advanced to the 1999 NCAA Tournament. Head Coach Tony Rossi, entering his 39th year, was named MAAC Coach of the Year for the sixth time in 2005 after guiding an overachieving Siena team back to the conference championships. Pitcher John Lannan became the 20th player in program history to be drafted when he was selected in the 11th round of the First Year Player's draft in June of 2005 by the Washington Nationals.
The women's soccer program has experienced recent success and growth as well. Steve Karbowski was recognized as the Northeast Co-Coach of the Year after orchestrating the nation's eighth best turnaround in 2001. He has been named MAAC Coach of the Year twice in his nine seasons as head coach, and last year led the Saints to the MAAC title game for just the second time in program history. Siena won a program record 10 games for the second consecutive season in 2005. Men's soccer coach Charlie Curto enters his 24th year with a heralded recruiting class that could have the Saints competing for MAAC supremacy.
In 2007, the Siena men's lacrosse team won the MAAC regular-season championship under the direction of two-time MAAC Coach of the Year Brian Brecht. Brecht has turned the Saints' program into a perennial contender in the MAAC and beyond in just three years at the helm. In 2005, MAAC Coach of the Year Jake McHerron guided the women's lacrosse team to the MAAC Championship game for the first time in program history.
Veteran men's tennis coach Jim Serbalik was named MAAC Coach of the Year in 2007 after helping his young team to an improved MAAC finish, and head cross country coach Jim Bowles welcomes in a talented crop of recruits to join his progressing programs.
The women's tennis team won the MAAC title in 2006 as now-junior Sarah Mayer set a program record with 22 singles victories at top singles. She was the first Siena athlete in any sport to be named MAAC Rookie of the Year, MAAC Player of the Year and MAAC Tournament MVP.
Siena's softball, field hockey, water polo and women's swimming and diving programs are under the direction of new coaches who have all four programs pointed in the right direction.
Most Siena teams make their homes on-campus, playing on the fields located behind the Marcelle Athletic Complex (MAC). In the spring of 2007, the department opened a multiple-purpose, artificial turf, outdoor athletic facility which will serve as a venue for Siena lacrosse, field hockey and soccer in addition to intramurals.
Inside the Marcelle Athletic Complex, Siena student-athletes have all the amenities to ensure their abilities to compete at the Division I level. Many student-athletes enjoyed the benefits of a recent expansion to the field house. The expansion, dedicated in July of 2004, features four "team rooms", as well as the Turchi Theater for film review and scouting. The men's and women's basketball locker rooms were also restructured as part of the project.
The women's basketball and volleyball teams play their home contests on UHY Court at the 4,000-seat Alumni Recreation Center (ARC), which received a cosmetic facelift during the summer of 2006.
Siena's men's basketball team makes its home at the Times Union Center in downtown Albany. The Times Union Center is a regionally acclaimed facility billed as Upstate New York's premier sports and entertainment destination. Since its full-time move to the Times Union Center prior to the 1996-97 season, both the men's and women's basketball team's attendances have soared into the top-100 in the country.
Siena prides itself in its student-athletes' success academically. A full-time academic advisor is on hand to provide assistance for student-athletes, helping in class scheduling and tutorial services. In 2002, an assistant advisor was hired to assist with the NCAA's Champs Life Skills initiative-known as S.A.IN.T.S. (Supporting Athletes in Their Success) at Siena.
The department's major undertaking in the summer of 2004 was the construction of a new study hall facility for the exclusive use of student-athletes. The study lounge is located on the second floor of the MAC and includes all the amenities and technological resources needed to assure the continued academic success for Siena's student-athletes.
In addition, the technologically advanced J. Spencer and Patricia Standish library, which opened in 2000, serves as a scenic backdrop to the baseball field and is a short walk from any point on campus.-->