McNamara Becomes NCAA Career Assist Leader as Golden Bears Wrap-Up Perfect NSIC Season
ST. CLOUD, Minn. - Concordia University senior setter Maggie McNamara (Zumbrota, Minn.) continues to make her mark on the NCAA as she set the Division II all-time career assist record with a 43 assist performance on Saturday afternoon. Her work led the top-ranked Golden Bears to a three set sweep (25-9, 25-10, 25-10) of St. Cloud State (7-25, 3-17 NSIC) to set the team's season record at 31-0. Concordia completes the regular season with an undefeated record along with its fifth perfect league record (20-0) in the last six years. They extend their NCAA record winning streak to 68 matches and have 52 consecutive NSIC wins. Concordia is now 118-2 under head coach Brady Starkey in league matches.
The Golden Bears will now begin their quest for a third consecutive NCAA Championship and a perfect season as the Northern Sun's automatic qualifier as regular season champions. Concordia will learn their seed and opponent when the NCAA airs the selection show for the NCAA Central Region Tournament. Concordia has hosted five of the last six NCAA Regionals at Gangelhoff Center since 2003. The selection show will be aired online at www.ncaa.com/video-index on Sunday, November 15 at 8:00 p.m. CT.
McNamara helped set a Golden Bear attack that hit nearly .500 better than the opposition. CU swung at a .433 clip for the match while the defense held the Huskies to a -.041 attack pct. McNamara's 43 assists give her 7,103 for her career, surpassing Leah Dennie of Air Force who held the previous mark at 7,080. Saturday's work also produced a double-double with 11 digs.
Maggie currently leads the NCAA in assists on the year with an average of 13.30 per set. The 2008 AVCA DII Player of the Year, McNamara has led the nation in assists every year of her illustrious career.
McNamara's record setting evening was aided by the strong play of senior Sadie Kessler (St. Michael, Minn.) who slammed home 15 kills in 20 attempts at a .700 rate. She also served up four assists, had six digs, two aces and a block in a dominant effort.
Junior middle Emily Palkert (Excelsior, Minn.) swung at a .500 percent as well, terminating seven of her 14 attempts in error-free fashion while blocking SCSU five times (one solo).
Junior middle Kasey Woodcock (Delano, Minn.) played a set and delivered with five kills in seven attempts and a pair of blocks while freshman Kara Pioske (Waconia, Minn.) continued to gain valuable experience with three kills, two digs and two blocks while playing all three sets once again.
Megan Carlson (Jr., Andover, Minn.) paced the defense with 17 digs and contributed eight kills on offense while senior Mary Slinger (Faribault, Minn.) added 11 digs to give CU three players in double-figures.
That defensive effort helped limit SCSU to just 17 kills as a team, just two more than Kessler's total.
In 2009, Concordia has only lost three of 60 sets in Northern Sun play and in their overall body of work in 31 matches they have lost just five sets out of 98.