By Michael T. Bello
Published May 3, 2017 at 7:00 AM ET; Updated Apr 30, 2017 at 8:26 PM ET

William Smith College Hatfield, MA — William Smith won the 2017 Most Improved Team Award.

The Most Improved Team Award is based on both the number of spots a team has improved in the rankings as well as the strength of the opponents they have surpassed. This award was first presented in 2010. Voting for the Most Improved Team Award was conducted after Team Championships, which allowed schools to view Team Championship results prior to casting their vote.

After concluding the 2015 – 2016 season by finishing third in the Epps Cup (D Division), William Smith’s goal was to move into the Walker Cup (C Division). Last season, 5-4 matches were not the Herons’ strong suit, but this season, William Smith won three 5-4 matches (Colby, St. Lawrence, and Bowdoin) to propel the squad higher in the rankings.

The 2016 – 2017 William Smith squad finished the year with a 14-8 record, which ties this year’s team for the third most wins in team history. The Herons concluded this season raked 20th in the nation.

The William Smith team was led by head coach Chip Fishback and captains Brooke Hayes and Cashel McCarthy.

This is the first time William Smith has won the Most Improved Team Award.