Little East Conference
|Little East Conference
|Sports fielded||19 (men's: 8; women's: 11)|
|Headquarters||North Dartmouth, Massachusetts|
|Commissioner||Jonathan C. Harper (since 2008)|
The Little East Conference (LEC) is an NCAA Division III intercollegiate athletic conference. The member institutions are located in the U.S. states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island.
The Little East Conference officially began on April 28, 1986 as a playing conference for men's and women's basketball among six New England institutions: Eastern Connecticut State University, Plymouth State College (now Plymouth State University), Rhode Island College, Southeastern Massachusetts University (now University of Massachusetts Dartmouth), the University of Massachusetts Boston, and the University of Southern Maine. From the beginning, the conference was officially recognized by the NCAA.
The number of sports contested in the conference has grown to include men's and women's soccer, baseball, men's and women's cross country, men's and women's indoor track, men's and women's outdoor track, men's lacrosse, softball, swimming and diving, men's and women's tennis and volleyball, as well as the original men's and women's basketball. The number of participating institutions rose to seven with the addition of Western Connecticut State University in 1993-94 and then to eight for the 1997-98 year as Keene State College joined.
Since the inception of the Little East Conference, baseball has been the conference's most recognizable sport. Two conference teams, Eastern Connecticut State University and the University of Southern Maine, have won a combined six Division III National Titles. Each year various conference teams are generally recognized in National top 25 polls as well as New England regional polls.
The league currently has eight full members:
|Eastern Connecticut State University||Willimantic, Connecticut||Warriors||1889||Public||5,113||1986|
|Keene State College||Keene, New Hampshire||Owls||1909||Public||6,400||1997|
|Plymouth State University||Plymouth, New Hampshire||Panthers||1871||Public||6,738||1986|
|Rhode Island College||Providence, Rhode Island||Anchormen||1854||Public||9,000||1986|
|University of Massachusetts Boston||Boston, Massachusetts||Beacons||1852||Public||15,741||1986|
|University of Massachusetts Dartmouth||Dartmouth, Massachusetts||Corsairs||1895||Public||9,432||1986|
|University of Southern Maine||Gorham, Maine
|Western Connecticut State University||Danbury, Connecticut||Colonials||1903||Public||6,001||1993|
|Bridgewater State University||Bridgewater, Massachusetts||Bears||1840||Public||11,201||MASCAC||field hockey
|Fitchburg State University||Fitchburg, Massachusetts||Falcons||1894||Public||5,201||MASCAC||field hockey|
|Framingham State University||Framingham, Massachusetts||Rams||1839||Public||5,903||MASCAC||field hockey|
|Salem State University||Salem, Massachusetts||Vikings||1854||Public||10,125||MASCAC||field hockey
|Westfield State University||Westfield, Massachusetts||Owls||1838||Public||5,500||MASCAC||field hockey
|Worcester State University||Worcester, Massachusetts||Lancers||1874||Public||5,470||MASCAC||field hockey
The LEC sponsors intercollegiate athletic competition in men's baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, women's field hockey, men's and women's lacrosse, men's and women’s soccer, women's softball, women's swimming and diving, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, and women's volleyball.
|School||Baseball stadium||Softball stadium||Basketball arena||Capacity|
|Eastern Connecticut||Eastern Baseball Stadium||Spector Field||Geissler Gymnasium||3,300|
|Keene State||Owl Athletic Complex||Owl Athletic Complex||Spaulding Gymnasium||2,000|
|Plymouth State||Panther Park||D&M Park||Foley Gymnasium||2,000|
|Rhode Island College||RIC Baseball Complex||Dayna A. Bazar Memorial Softball Field||The Murray Center||2,500|
|Southern Maine||Towers Fields||Towers Fields||Warren G. Hill Gymnasium||1,400|
|UMass Boston||Yetten Field||Clark Athletic Center||Clark Athletic Center||3,500|
|UMass Dartmouth||UMass Dartmouth Athletic Field||UMass Dartmouth Athletic Field||Tripp Athletic Center||3,000|
|Western Connecticut||Westside Field||Westside Field||Feldman Arena||2,800|
The following conference members have won NCAA National Championships:
- Eastern Connecticut-Baseball (1982, 1990, 1998, 2002), Softball (1982, 1985, 1986, 1990)
- UMass Boston-Women's Indoor Track & Field (1985, 1986, 1987), Women's Outdoor Track & Field (1986)
- Southern Maine-Baseball (1991, 1997)
The Little East Commissioner's Cup
Each year since 2001 at the end of the school year the Conference awards the annual Commissioner's Cup. The Commissioner's Cup measures an institution's overall performance in the 19 sports sponsored by the Little East Conference. For sports in which the conference conducts in-season play, point totals are determined by the order of finish in the final regular season standings with bonus points awarded to the champion of the ensuing postseason conference championship tournament. For sports that do not conduct in-season play (cross country, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, and swimming and diving) points are awarded based on the order of finish in the conference championship meet.
Since the inaugural Commissioner's Cup has been awarded, Keene State College has won all 10 trophies.