Tiffin, Ohio – November 6, 2010 – For the first time in the history of the program the Heidelberg University volleyball team swept the Ohio Athletic Conference trophies. Top-seeded, and 13th ranked, Heidelberg claimed its first OAC Tournament title following a 3-1 (25-21, 17-25, 25-17, 25-23) victory over no. 2 seed Ohio Northern today in Seiberling Gymnasium, on the campus of Heidelberg.
Heidelberg’s OAC Tournament trophy joins its 1986, 2009 and 2010 regular season championship hardware. This fall the Berg went undefeated in league play for the first time ever to pave the way for its first tournament title. The win improves Heidelberg, and 11th-year head coach Jason Miller, to 32-5 overall. Its 32 wins sets a new single season record, topping its 31 wins from 2008.
The victory also gives Heidelberg an automatic bid to the 2010 NCAA Volleyball Championships. Heidelberg will begin regional play on Thursday, Nov. 11. The NCAA will announce the entire field for the championships on Monday, Nov. 8 at 11:00 a.m. Heidelberg will be making its fourth consecutive appearance in NCAA postseason play.
In conjunction with the OAC Tournament, the league office announced the 2010 award winners as voted on by the league’s head coaches. Taking home player of the year honors, along with a nod on the first team, was junior outside hitter Jackie Reinhart (New Riegel, Ohio / New Riegel). Reinhart marks the first player at the Berg to earn player of the year accolades. Her honor joins her rookie of the year selection from 2008, which was also a first for Heidelberg.
Taking home OAC Libero of the Year honors for the third straight season was senior Brittany Donelan (North Olmsted, Ohio / North Olmsted). Donelan was also named to the first team.
Landing a spot on the second team was junior outside hitter Venessa Hasse (Miamisburg, Ohio / Miamisburg) and sophomore middle hitter Marian Bevington (Celina, Ohio / Parkway). Rounding out the list of all-league honors was sophomore right side Jacki Street (Grafton, Ohio / Midview), with a nod on the honorable mention list.
In the victory over the Polar Bears, Bevington led the way with 15 kills followed by 14 from Reinhart. Freshman Amber Welfle (Norwalk, Ohio / St. Paul) finished with 12 kills. Welfle led the hitters with a .423 attack percentage. Reinhart produced a double-double with 17digs.
Sophomore Rachel Ferguson (Brighton, Mich. / Brighton) dished out a team-leading 29 assists.
Donelan led the back row with a match-high 22 digs, while Haase added 14.