Soccer, Volleyball Advance to Championship
Continuing the tradition of academic and athletic excellence, the University of St. Thomas sent both the Lady Celts Women’s Volleyball team and the Men’s Soccer team to the opening rounds of the National Association of Intercollegiate Institutions (NAIA) Championships on Nov. 20. In the opening round, The Lady Celts lost to College of Idaho, 23-5, and the Men’s Soccer team was defeated by Belhaven College, 2-1.
The 2010 Lady Celts Volleyball season was the most successful season in school history with 24 wins, a third consecutive Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.) conference title and its third consecutive trip to the NAIA National Championships. The Lady Celts lost to the College of Idaho in the first round of the Championships, 23-5.
The season had many highlights on the court with several firsts by individual players. Lauren Poe topped 1,000 career kills and digs. Casey Mulryan topped 1,000 career kills. Sarah Curiel-Thompson topped over 2,500 career assists. The team won a Division I tournament: Texas Southern Tournament. Posted 3 wins over Division I programs.
Post-season honors for the Lady Celts saw the appointment of players to the A.I.I. All-Tournament Team including Kinzie Van Voorst, Mallory Wendel and Casey Mulryan. Casey Mulryan was named the tournament MVP. The Lady Celts also placed four members on the A.I.I. All-Conference Team: Casey Mulryan, Brittany Downs, Mallory Wendel, and Lauren Poe. Mulryan was also named Conference Player of the Year.
In only its fourth season of competition, the 2010 UST Celts Men's Soccer Team qualified for the NAIA National Championships. It was a season full of firsts including their first 10-win season with a record of 10-6-2 going into the Nationals. It was also the first time that the Celts advanced to the finals of the A.I.I. Conference Tournament.
Seven seniors have helped lead this team to reach its highest success to date, five of whom have been with the program from its inception in 2007. Senior Captains Lukas "Miko" Simon and Jad El-Masri have been tremendous for the Celts on and off the field this season. El Masri goes into the Championships with 6 goals and 3 assists leading the team with 15 points while carrying a 3.122 GPA as a double major in marketing and finance. Simon anchors the defense from the goalkeeper position with a 1.38 goals against average and 88 saves on the season thus far. Simon carries a 3.78 GPA in Bioinformatics. The senior class has an overall GPA of 3.14 and has accumulated 32 wins in 4 seasons, including only 2 losses in their last 10 matches.
"This season’s success has been the result of four years of hard work and determination by all these young men,” Champenoy said. “We entered the season with high expectations and a renewed desire to come together as a team and make history for future versions of the Celts. This team has overcome many obstacles and persevered to accomplish something truly great this season. And they aren't finished. I have never been more proud of a group of student-athletes. They have done it right way, excelling in the community and the classroom, and becoming the definition of what a student-athlete should be.”