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Midfielder of the Highest Echelon: Heuser Earns Third All-America Berth

Paula Heuser leading UAlbany to 7-1 victory over UC Davis in the America East quarterfinals on November 5. (Photo by Bill Ziskin for UAlbany Athletics)

ALBANY, N.Y. (December 10, 2015) — University at Albany field hockey midfielder Paula Heuser became a three-time All-American this week, named to the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) first team for the second straight season after taking second team honors as a freshman.

Now a junior, the 2014 NFHCA National Player of the Year finished behind this year’s winner, Tara Vittese of the University of Virginia, but won the NFHCA Northeast Region Player of the Year award for the second consecutive season.

She no doubt is most proud, however, of contributing to teams that have made back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances, which included a 2014 first-round victory and first-ever appearance for a UAlbany team in a Division I semi-final.

“Paula is a very unique student athlete,” said Phil Sykes, field hockey head coach. “She excels in the classroom and on the field at a very high level. On the hockey field she impresses me every day in so many ways. Her work ethic is extremely high and she practices as hard as she plays. “It is hard to challenge Paula to do something better than before because she is always putting that pressure on herself.

“She has broken every record here at Albany, yet she is all about the team and our success. She is a joy to coach and we are very proud of the way she represents our great university.”

This year, Paula ranked third nationally in points per game (3.59) and goals per game (1.55). She stands as the NCAA Division I active career leader in goals (80) as well as points (194). A three-time America East Midfielder of the Year and all-conference first team pick, she scored 34 goals in 2015 to go with 12 assists.

With one season remaining in her career, Paula is the University's all-time program leader in career points, career goals, single-season points and single-season goals. The Monchengladbach, Germany, native is the first field hockey Great Dane to take NFHCA Division I First Team All-American accolades in consecutive seasons, and just the second to garner All-American status three times in her career. Meredith Jackel was a three-time All-American in the Division II ranks from 1995-1997.

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A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.