Date Posted:11/07/2007, 3:30PM
BRUNSWICK, Maine - The top-ranked Bowdoin College field hockey team has swept the New England Small College Athletic Conference postseason honors announced Wednesday by the conference office. Bowdoin junior Lindsay McNamara (Milton, Mass.) was recognized as the NESCAC Player of the Year while first-year Ingrid Oelschlager (Roanoke, Va.) claimed Rookie of the Year honors. Head Coach Nicky Pearson collected Coach of the Year honors for the sixth time after leading Bowdoin to their third consecutive NESCAC Championship.
In addition, McNamara, senior tri-captain Valerie Young (Concord, N.H.) and junior Julia King (Yarmouth, Maine) netted First-Team All-Conference selections, while Oelschlager and defender Kristen Veiga (Concord, N.H.) earned Second-Team honors.
McNamara currently paces the NESCAC in scoring with 18 goals and 42 points (18-6-42) while starting all 16 games up front for Bowdoin, averaging 1.12 goals and 2.62 points per contest. McNamara has led the Polar Bears in offensive production over the past three seasons, as her 18 tallies during the 2007 campaign are a personal best and her 42 points are just two shy of a career-high 44 she collected last year. During McNamara's tenure in Brunswick, she has accumulated a school-record 51 goals - 20 of which have served as game-winners - and 17 assists for 119 points through 54 starts. She is the third Polar Bear in the last five years to earn the conference's top honor, after Marissa O'Neil received Player of the Year recognition in 2003 and Taryn King came away with the honor in 2005.
Oelschlager has proven to be a valuable asset off the bench for the Polar Bears this season. She is second only to McNamara on the Bowdoin stat sheet with 15 goals and two assists for 32 points through 16 appearances and is the top first year player in the league in both goals and points, ranking fourth in the NESCAC in points and third in goals. She is one goal and one point shy of tying McNamara's program marks for goals and points by a first-year.
Val Young collects her second-straight First-Team selection after another solid season on the Bowdoin backline. A versatile defender, Young collected three assists this season as stick-stopper on Bowdoin's penalty corners and anchored a unit that allowed just three goals all season. Julia King joins Young and McNamara as a First-Team choice after earning Second-Team All-Conference honors in 2006. A key to the Polar Bears offense, King plays the point on Bowdoin's penalty corners and served up a school-record 19 assists this season, including two in the NESCAC Final against Middlebury.
Kristen Veiga joins Oelschlager as a Second-Team All-NESCAC selection. She earns her first postseason honor after starting all 16 games at defense, scoring four goals and three assists off Polar Bear penalty corners this year. In addition, she is part of Bowdoin's stifling defense that permitted just 5.3 shots per game in 2006.
Pearson earns her sixth NESCAC Coach of the Year honor after posting just the third perfect regular season in program history and second in the past three seasons. In her 11th year at the helm of the Polar Bears, she has posted a career mark of 160-37 (.812) including an incredible 51-3 record in the last three years, reaching the NCAA Semifinals in 2005 and '06.
Bowdoin (16-0) is ranked first in the season-ending NFHCA/STX National Poll and will host an NCAA Regional this weekend at Ryan Field. The Polar Bears will play the winner of Wednesday's Skidmore-Alvernia first-round contest at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday.