The D-III Life with Wheaton College’s Mia Len

WBBall vs Babson

Wheaton College’s Mia Len is our student-athlete blogger for the D3 Life. (PHOTO COURTESY: Wheaton College Athletics)

By Mia Len 

Let me tell you about being an NCAA D-III student-athlete at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. 

The D-III life has been the most rewarding experience in my opinion. Sure, there are  ups and downs – more good days than bad, of course – but at the end of the day, I firmly believe my experience as a member of the Wheaton women’s basketball program will help me both in and outside the classroom, as well as beyond the Norton campus when I graduate in two years. 

I am excited to tell you about my experience this winter as a student-athlete blogger for Noontime Nation. And I hope each post I produce for the site will provide a glimpse (and some insight, too) into what my life (and experience) is like at Wheaton as both a student and an athlete.

Prior to our Thanksgiving break, I begin my day with two classes: economics and social entrepreneurship. Both classes, coincidentally, are with my teammates. I am a business major, so both of these classes are right up my alley. And one of my teammates and I are working on a project together that consists of interviewing a social enterprise. We have spent a lot of time on it and are excited to present it to our class during this particular week. 

After class, I head to my favorite spot on campus to eat lunch with my teammates in the student-center at the Diana Davis Spencer ’60 Café. This particular cafe features a variety of food choices and coffee (of course) and is where I spend a lot of time doing work, but also some socializing with friends. And on this particular day, the cafe is offering a flatbread and soup deal – it was delicious! 

The cafe is also the spot where I usually work on the graphics that I post on social media – I am both the social media coordinator for our women’s basketball team, but also the athletic department, too. I like to ask my teammates for their opinions on the graphics I produce before they are finalized and ready to be shared. 

On this specific day, though, we happen to have a game at the University of New Hampshire, so once I wrap up my work (and food) I head to our team’s pre-game meal where I can also do some work and get ready for our team’s sixth game of the 2019-20 season.  

Following our pre-game meal, my teammates and I head to the bus for a long ride to New Hampshire. But for some reason, traffic cooperated – crazy, right? – so we arrive two hours earlier than expected, which provides our team with some extra time for warmups. And before we know it, it’s game time.

New Hampshire wins this particular meeting, but the experience of competing against a D-I squad was awesome – I am sure it will help us moving forward, as well as when we begin conference play next month against Mount Holyoke College.

On our way back, I watched a movie with one of my teammates and before we knew it, we were back on campus ready to go to bed – it has been a long day. 

And thus concludes my first installment of the D3 Life for Noontime Nation – I hope you enjoyed learning more about my experience at Wheaton and I certainly cannot wait to tell you more in a future post, so stay tuned for our next installment. 

I love being a D-III student-athlete, especially at Wheaton. And while my days can be long and tiring with classes, practices, and extracurricular activities, I know deep down this experience – and the memories I am making with my teammates and classmates, too – are worth it.


Mia Len is a sophomore at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, as well as a member of the women’s basketball program. Len, who is a business major, is also our first student-blogger for ‘The D3 Life,’ which provides readers with a glimpse of what it takes to be a student-athlete in NCAA Division III. 

New England D3 Hoops: Wheaton Set To Host Fifth Annual Cheryl Warren-Powers’ 95 Tournament

It will be a special weekend for Wheaton College as they host the fifth annual Cheryl Warren-Powers '95 Tournament. (Photo Credit: Wheaton College Women's Basketball)

It will be a special weekend for Wheaton College as they host the fifth annual Cheryl Warren-Powers ’95 Tournament. (Photo Credit: Wheaton College Women’s Basketball)

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11

It’s a special weekend for the Wheaton College women’s basketball program, as the Lyons will host the fifth annual Cheryl Warren-Powers ’95 Tournament, beginning this evening in Emerson Gymnasium.

The two-day event celebrates the life of Warren-Powers, who sadly passed away on May 22, 2012. A two-sport athlete (basketball and softball) at Wheaton, Warren-Powers became the second female basketball player at Bishop Feehan High School (Attleboro, Massachusetts) to score 1,000 career points.

“(This event) is for her twins (Jordan and Craig),” said Wheaton women’s basketball head coach Melissa Hodgdon. “A lot of alums will be coming back (to campus), we will be hosting an alumni game Saturday morning and a reception afterward.

“There will also be some (former classmates) from Cheryl’s class that will be here Friday and Saturday, and the twins will be speaking, along with Cheryl’s brother prior to Friday night’s game.”

As noted on the school’s athletic website, fans are encouraged to donate to the Little Angles of Warren-Powers Memorial Fund, which benefits Cheryl’s twins, Jordan and Craig, by visiting their GoFundMe page here: https://www.gofundme.com/2tv67744

Wheaton will commence the two-day tournament with a 5:30 p.m. contests against New Jersey City before Framingham State takes on Newbury College at 7:30 p.m. Both winners will advance to Saturday’s tournament final at 3 p.m. with a consolation contest scheduled for 1 p.m.

Mass. College Hoops: Wheaton Provides Coach Hodgdon With Win No. 200

By Matt Noonan

Wheaton College women’s basketball head coach Melissa Hodgdon earned her 200th career victory on the sidelines yesterday when the Lyons defeated Mount Holyoke in New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play.

Hodgdon, who is in her 13th season with the Blue and White, is currently second all-time in wins in program history with 188 victories.

After the win was recorded, numerous tweets were sent out to congratulate Coach Hodgdon on the impressive feat:

 

 

 

 

In addition to Hodgdon’s victory, the Lyons collaborated for 56 rebounds (33 defensive caroms), 23 assists and 12 steals. Kiley Shoemaker, who shattered a 28-year-old program record for rebounds last week, concluded the contest with a double-double of 17 points and 12 rebounds, while Oppie Morris finished with 13 points and 11 boards.

Wheaton – currently sixth in conference play – will look to extend their current winning streak to three-straight when they visit Clark on Wednesday, January 27.

Mass. College Hoops: Wheaton Picks Up Fourth Straight Win, Tops Colorado College, 84-68

By NoontimeSports.com

The Wheaton College women’s basketball team extended their current winning streak to four games, defeating Colorado College in Emerson Gymnasium this evening. Here is the release, courtesy of the Wheaton College Sports Information Department:

NORTON, Mass. – Fueled by a career-high 33 points from senior forward Abbie Brickley (Sandy, Utah/Skyline), the Wheaton College women’s basketball team extended its winning streak to four-straight games with an 84-68 non-conference triumph over Colorado College on Friday night inside Emerson Gymnasium.

Brickley poured in her career-high 33 points on 14-for-19 shooting, which included a 5-for-6 performance at the free throw line, and also hauled in a game-high 14 rebounds to pace the Lyons. Brickley’s 33 points against the Tigers tonight ranks third all-time in a single game in program history. Terri Salinetti ’92 holds the school record with 35 points against Wesleyan on January 25, 1992, while current volunteer assistant coach Bri Smith ’09 ranks second with 34 points, which occurred on December 7, 2005 versus Salem State.

Wheaton junior forward Kiley Shoemaker (Fayetteville, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius) posted 17 points, eight rebounds, a career-high six blocks, two assists and one steal. Senior guard Laura Pierce (Hampstead, N.H./Pinkerton Academy) collected four points, a game-high eight assists, three points and one steal, while classmate Kirsten Ferrari (Lynn, Mass./Saint Mary’s) registered six points, five rebounds, four assists and two swipes.

Colorado College had three student-athletes in double-figures highlight by junior forward Danielle Davis (Boxford, Mass.) who notched a team-high 18 points on 8-of-13 shooting, four rebounds, three assists and one steal. First-year guard Malia Shappell (Lakewood, Colo.) contributed 14 points, five boards, and a pair of blocks, assists and steals, while sophomore forward Korbyn Ukasick (Windsor, Colo.) chipped in with 11 points and three rebounds.

The Lyons shot 48.5-percent (32-for-66) from the field, 31.3-percent (5-for-16) from beyond the arc, 78.9-percent (15-for-19) at the free throw line, assisted on 22 made baskets and won the rebounding matchup 47-33. Wheaton also held a 52-32 differential in points in the paint and a 19-14 margin in bench points. Colorado College tallied a slight 19-17 edge in points off of turnovers.

Tied 12-12 at the 15:48 mark of the contest, Wheaton used a 33-18 run to close out the remainder of the half and take a 45-30 advantage into the break. Brickley led the charge with 12 points, which included two old-fashioned three-point plays, and Shoemaker turned in eight points to aid the offense. The Lyons also received five points from junior guard Rebecca Arnone (Litchfield, N.H./Campbell), a trey by Ferrari, a layup from first-year Oppie Morris (Ware, Mass./Northfield Mount Hermon) and another three-point by classmate Emily Cuthbertson (Hudson, N.H./New Hampton School) that capped the run with 52-seconds left to go in the stanza.

Wheaton led by as many as 28 points with 7:09 remaining in the final half of play. Colorado College kept the game under ten points until the 3:01 mark of the first stanza when Brickley slipped by her defender and canned Pierce’s feed home for her final points of the opening 20 minutes of action.

Wheaton (4-0) hosts Tufts University on Monday, December 1 inside Emerson Gymnasium at 7 p.m. The Lyons, who are receiving votes in the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA)/USA Today Division III Preseason Poll, will face a Tufts University that is coming off of a NCAA Tournament Final Four appearance from a season ago next month. Colorado College (0-3) continues its East Coast swing with a non-conference game against Bridgewater State University tomorrow at 6 p.m.

Mass. College Hoops: Wheaton Prepares For Its Final Stretch

By Matt Noonan

Wheaton College women’s basketball head coach Melissa Hodgdon is all about taking it one day at a time.

“We really just take it one game at a time,” said Hodgdon, who’s guided the Lyons to a 15-4 overall mark this season. “We’re 1-0 today and everyday our goal is to get better.”

The message of getting better will indeed be echoed this evening when the Lyons return to Emerson Gymnasium to prepare for Clark University, their first of six remaining foes.

Wheaton, which is currently in third place in the NEWMAC, won its first 12 contests before falling to MIT earlier this month, 60-59. And since their loss to the Engineers, Wheaton has won three of six contests (all three of those wins were second meetings, which secured season sweeps).

Yet, while Hodgdon was pleased with her team’s effort last night, a 77-58 victory over Emerson, she certainly believes the month of January helped the squad prepare for its final stretch.

“It’s always good to get a win, but sometimes you learn more from losses,” said Hodgdon.

“The Smith game was a great basketball game. It was a phenomenal basketball game to watch and I’ve obviously watched it 100 times since we’ve played it, but you get to see things (from a different angle) and I’ve learned things (from it, too).”

The lessons from the Smith-Wheaton game will definitely be used down the stretch, but so will the squad’s team play from last night, a key factor in their win over the Lions.

As Hodgdon said, “(This group) can pick each other up. Last night, (Rebecca Arnone) got in foul trouble, so (we received help from) Alyssa Almario, Laura Pierce and (Kirsten Ferrari). I feel like we’re pretty well balanced, but its just having that mentality that it’s not one person because they’re all capable of doing it.”

With a pair of practices lined up before their second meeting with the Cougars, Hodgdon will focus on using the additional time to help the Lyons improve, while also adhering to their 1-0 philosophy.

“I know Clark will come in here and they have to win, but we have to win and it’s kind of like play the best that day and that day is the championship game,” said Hodgdon. “I feel like we’re in a good spot health-wise, mentally and physically to go in and give them our best shot.”