“Since the age of 10, if I wasn’t playing soccer, I was coaching it,” Korynne Provenzano ’17 says. “Soccer was my whole life.” The Stratham, N.H. native, who had played in school and at the club level, wanted to continue in the sport. But after graduation from her local high school, Korynne knew she wasn’t quite ready to step into college. “I had never lived away from home,” she recalls, noting that she played with a few girls who had attended Brewster. Those connections led her to an application to attend Brewster for a post grad year. “My friend’s dad was a coach with Seacoast United, and he sent me the application. I met Coach Matt Butcher and visited campus,” Provenazno says. “It all clicked and it was the quickest process ever!”
With a solid and positive PG year in Wolfeboro under her belt (more on that later!), Provenzano graduated and began attending Lasell University in Newton, Mass. And after five years of play (four as an undergrad and one as a graduate student), this spring she received one of Lasell’s highest honors: Athlete of the Year. The award is presented annually to two student-athletes who have made a significant impact on the success of their teams and have been recognized by the conference, regional, or national body for excellence in athletic achievement. The University requires that the recipient must have played in at least 75% of their games and been at least a two-year member of an athletic program at Lasell. Korynne definitely exceeded those marks!
At the award ceremony banquet, after a few words from Lasell President Michael Alexander, Assistant Athletic Director Cait Connolly presented the Athlete of the Year awards to Korynne and fellow honoree EJ Day (of Lasell’s men’s basketball program). Connolly noted that defensive player Korynne led the women’s soccer program to two playoff wins and an appearance in the GNAC championship game. Her team went 13-5 overall and 11-2 in the conference, and she was a standout defender for a unit that held 13 opponents scoreless. She was also named to the All-New England second team by the United Soccer Coaches and represented the Lasell Lasers on the GNAC All-Conference first team.
Lasell University’s Women’s Soccer Coach, Vito La Francesca, gave the former Bobcat high praise. “Provenzano’s legacy stands as the best defender in my time with the Lasell program. She will be greatly missed, and I am privileged to have had the opportunity to coach Korynne.”
Korynne, who isn’t exactly comfortable speaking about her own achievements, almost didn’t get to have this thrilling moment in the spotlight. “This award and others are all given at a big athletics awards dinner, and I wasn’t even going to go,” she said, “But I saw my coach one day and he asked if I was going to go. I texted my teammates and asked if they were going, and we eventually all agreed to attend. That alone was fun because we had not seen each other in a while.” Mom Donna Dupuis also drove in for the event. “My mom eats this stuff up!” Korynne shares. “She is so supportive. She drove me to soccer every day and she did so much for me when I was little. She’s been there with me for the whole soccer journey.”
Neither Mom or Korynne (or her teammates) knew that the Athlete of the Year award was coming her way. So as the speaker described the award winner as someone from Stratham, New Hampshire, it all clicked. “My mom was just as shocked as I was, and she was so excited for me!” Korynne recalls. “But my coach knew and he squatted behind me and gave me a big hug!”
Back at Brewster
Korynne says Brewster helped her prepare for college in many ways. First, she had a better idea of what to expect in terms of competitive play after having been with Coach Butcher and her Brewster team for a year. “Also, at 18 I had never lived away from home. At Brewster I lived in Mason with Mrs. Lauren Hunter as my dorm parent—and I love her so much!” she says. “Being in a dorm with other people helps you a lot as you head to college. When I was a freshman at Lasell, I lived in a huge communal dorm—boys and girls—and I was already used to living with a roommate. I knew what to expect.”
Korynne says that she loved “a bunch of great teachers” at Brewster so much: “My best year of school was at Brewster—I had never done so well in school before until I went to Brewster—they really help you. You’re not just a number.” She gives a special shout out to Mr. Yu Lui: “He’s the best! He was my physics teacher. I’m not a math person at all and he was so patient with me. That really helped me…and he’s a great guy!” Korynne’s PG experience was so positive that her brother, Michael, decided to become a Bobcat in his freshman year. After graduating with the Class of 2021, he is now attending St. Anselm College.
With her undergraduate degree in journalism and media writing and her Master’s in digital marketing, Korynne has her sights set on a job in the non-profit sector. “This world is so sad and you want to change it anyway you can,” she says. “Saving our oceans is very important to me, but any social media marketing brand that could do that would be a great place for me to land.”
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