Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 8/26/09
Souderton graduate Kelly Roberts Brenninger, who led Millersville to the AIAW Division III national championship as a first-year goalie in 1982, will be inducted into the Millersville University Sports Hall of Fame Oct. 23 as part of Homecoming weekend.
Brenninger, a teacher of 25 years in the Upper Perkiomen School District and a successful field hockey coach for 18 years, had never played the position of goalkeeper until 1982.
As a freshman, Brenninger started at center for Millersville. But during the fall of her sophomore year she was asked by Marauders coach Barb Waltman if she would switch to the goalie position because the team had no one heading into the spring.
Brenninger learned the position over the winter and was an instant smash once the season began. She yielded only 95 goals in 15 games for a brilliant 6.3 goals-against average.
The Marauders (10-4-1) defeated Denison, 11-6, in the national quarterfinals, edged Franklin & Marshall, 9-8, in the semifinals and then whipped Lynchburg, 10-3, in the national championship game.
Brenninger was a four-year starter in both field hockey and lacrosse at Millersville, twice being named the team’s most outstanding defensive player in each sport.
After graduating from Millersville in 1984, Brenninger earned a master’s of education degree from Kutztown University before beginning her teaching career at Upper Perkiomen.
Brenninger took over a struggling Upper Perk field hockey program in 1989 and built the program into a consistently winner in District 1. In her last 12 years, Brenninger guided Upper Perk to a record of 185-58-19, including five Pioneer Athletic Conference titles.
In her last year as coach in 2006, Brenninger’s Indians won the PAC-10 championship and the District 1 Class AA title before bowing to the top-ranked team in the country, Wyoming Seminary, in the state title game.