Tiffin, Ohio – November 9, 2009 – The nationally-ranked Heidelberg University volleyball team continues its season at the 2009 NCAA Division III Volleyball Championship. It is the third-consecutive season that the Berg will be making an appearance at the NCAA Championship. The 2009 Ohio Athletic Conference Regular Season Champions earned a spot via the league’s automatic qualifier bid. Heidelberg will take part in the Hope College Regional beginning on Thursday, Nov. 12.
Heidelberg will face North Central College (34-4) on Thursday beginning at 12:30 p.m. Joining Heidelberg and North Central is host Hope College (30-3), Bluffton University (27-5), Ohio Northern University (27-3), Calvin College (27-6) Wittenberg University (24-7) and Lakeland College (23-12).
The NCAA Division III Women’s Volleyball Committee announced the field of 62 teams this morning. Forty conferences were awarded automatic qualification for the 2009 championship. Three teams were selected from Pool B, which consists of independent institutions and institutions that are members of conferences that do not meet the requirements for automatic qualification. The final 19 berths were reserved for Pool C, which consists of institutions from automatic-qualifying conferences that are not the conference champion and any remaining Pool B teams.
Heidelberg, under the guidance of 10th-head coach Jason Miller, the 2009 OAC Coach of the Year, enters the championship carrying a 27-7 overall record. It is the fourth-straight season and fifth time in the last six years that Heidelberg has eclipsed the 20-win plateau.
Leading the offense for the Berg is 2009 All-OAC First Team honoree senior setter Morgan Magers (Green Springs, Ohio / Old Fort). Magers has dished out 1,323 assists, while adding 90 kills, 294 digs and 29 service aces. Joining her on the league’s first team is sophomore outside hitter Venessa Haase (Miamisburg, Ohio / Miamisburg). Haase leads the team in kills (355) and service aces (79), while standing second in digs (474).
Registering a career-best season with 354 kills is senior middle hitter Amanda Atchison (Frankfort, Ohio / Frankfort Adena). Atchison ranks second on the team with 354 kills and with a .265 attack percentage. For her efforts she earned a spot on the All-OAC Second Team, which marked her first postseason honor of her career.
Two-time OAC Libero of the Year (2008, 2009) junior Brittany Donelan (North Olmsted, Ohio / North Olmsted) leads a solid Heidelberg defense. She has a team-best 662 digs and has moved into second all-time at the Berg for career digs. Donelan has also contributed 23 service aces.
Jackie Reinhart (New Riegel, Ohio / New Riegel) picked up her second all-league award in just two seasons. She was tabbed an honorable mention selection after standing second on the team with 61 service aces and third in kills (283) and digs (473).
The freshman duo of Jacki Street (Grafton, Ohio / Midview) and Marian Bevington (Celina, Ohio / Parkway) have contributed greatly to Heidelberg’s attack game this season. Street shares team honors with Magers with a .306 attack percentage, while ranking fourth with 253 kills. Bevington is fifth on the team with 206 kills and has served up 16 service aces. Bevington leads the way at the net with 77 blocks followed by Street with 73.
Also contributing greatly to Heidelberg’s success in 2009 has been senior Amanda Montgomery (Dayton, Ohio /Carroll) and junior Suzy Street (Grafton, Ohio / Midview). Montgomery has 85 kills and 16 service aces on the year, while Street has served up 30 aces and registered 285 digs.