PLEASANTVILLE, NY- The Pace University Athletics Department has selected the 1984-85 women's basketball team as the first-ever Team of Distinction Award winner and Pace professor Dr. Joseph Pastore PhD. as the Peter X. Finnerty Leadership Award recipient as part of the 2014 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony to take place on Friday, March 28, 2014 at Willow Ridge Country Club in Harrison, N.Y. The 1984-85 team posted the most wins in a season in women's basketball history as well as winning the NCAA Division II East Region that season advancing to the national quarterfinal. Dr. Pastore has been a long-time supporter of student-athletes at Pace University and worked with Mr. Finnerty in his role as the Dean of the Lubin School of Business and University Provost in the 1970s and 1980s.
The 1984-85 women's basketball team finished their season with a 28-3 record. The team featured five 1,000 point scorers, including the current all-time leader in points, Jennifer DiMaggio. Three members of the team comprise the soon-to-be 50 hall of famers including Tracy Jackson, Amy Acker and DiMaggio. The Setters were ranked in the top-10 in all of the national polls that season, including reaching an all-time high of #2 in the February 17, 1985 poll.
Pace went on to win the Empire State Conference regular season and tournament as they defeated Adelphi University in the semifinals and won the championship with a 78-67 win over Mercy College. The Setters were the top seed in the East Region that season and won the regional title with a 66-62 win over Utica College to advance in the tournament. Pace fell in the national quarterfinal in overtime as they lost to Hampton College 90-82. The Setters were named the women's basketball ECAC Division II Team of the Year in 1985. DiMaggio and Jackson were named to the Empire State All-Conference Team with Acker being selected as the Empire State Conference Rookie of the Year. Acker and Jackson were named the Empire State Conference playoffs Co-MVP's and Acker was also named the NCAA Division II East Regional Championship MVP.
The Team of Distinction Award was created to recognize Pace varsity teams throughout the history of the athletics department that achieved unparalleled success as a team in a particular season. Each member of the team will be recognized for their hard work and dedication to the program. This award will be presented as a piece of the Hall of Fame induction ceremony each year moving forward.
Dr. Pastore has strong ties with the Pace Athletics Department in his various roles at the university for nearly 40 years. As Dean of the Lubin School of Business (1976-80) and later as the Vice President for Academic Affairs (1980-1985) and University Provost (1985-91) he worked closely with Director of Athletics, Peter X. Finnerty on projects throughout each semester as athletics reported to student life during that time. Pastore graduated from St. Bonaventure University in 1963 and received his MBA from Pace University in 1966. He would later achieve his Ph. D. from Saint Louis University in 1969. He has held a faculty appointment at Pace since 1976, was Visiting Scholar at Columbia Business School (1988), and served as Executive Vice President and Professor at Boston College (1991-1993) while on leave from Pace. Dr. Pastore is an avid fan and supporter of Pace Athletics, is a familiar face at all sporting events on campus and has been a mentor and friend to hundreds of students. He is often relied upon as an advisor for athletics administrators and has signed on as the athletics faculty affiliate for the baseball team for the 2014 season.
Pastore will be the fourth recipient of the award since its inception in 2001. Previous recipients include alumni Garret DeGraff Jr. '68 and Pace Trustee Emeritus Charles F. Jacey Jr. '57 as well as Pace professor and acclaimed author Dr. Nicholas Catalano. The award goes to a member or members of the Pace University community for outstanding leadership and service to the university or to society as a whole. The award was established to recognize the characteristics that Peter Finnerty was best known for: hard work, a spirit of competition, and the ability to serve and lead with integrity as well as inspire others to do the same.
About Pace Athletics: Pace University is an NCAA Division II member of the Northeast-10 Conference that sponsors 12 intercollegiate sports and will be adding women's lacrosse and field hockey as varsity sports in 2015. Pace also sponsors a Spirit Squad which includes Dance and Cheerleading teams. In the Fall 2013 semester, 160 of Pace student-athletes achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Pace has launched a three-year Master Plan which will result in the consolidation of the Briarcliff campus at Pleasantville and include a wide range of important improvements including significantly expanded and upgraded athletics facilities.
About Pace University: Pace University is a comprehensive, independent University with campuses in New York City and Westchester County. The Pace Pleasantville campus is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.