May 14, 2008
IOWA CITY, IA - Eight Hawkeyes have been selected to play in the United States Field Hockey Association's (USFHA) national championship tournament. The tournament will be held June 15-22, at Virginia Beach, VA and will be used as part of a selection process for the 2008 United States Olympic team, national squad and junior national team camp. Former Hawkeye Barb Weinberg (2001-04) is a strong candidate for the Olympic team, considering she was part of the Olympic qualifying tournament team.
Another former Hawkeye, Heather Schnepf (2003-06) is up for selection to the national squad. Sophomores Meghan Beamesderfer and Tricia Dean are age eligible for the junior national team camp. Juniors Caroline Blaum, Roz Ellis, Lissa Munley and Lauren Pfeiffer will also participate in the tournament. Juniors Caitlin McCurdy and Jess Werley were selected as alternates.
"Heather and Barb are alumnae of the field hockey program and will help raise the level and bring some experience to the Midwest Team at the National Championship Tournament in Virginia Beach," Head Coach Tracey Griesbaum said.
Last season, Blaum led the Hawkeyes in assists (11) and was second in points (23). Blaum was a first team all-Big Ten honoree and a regional all-American.
Dean was third on the team in assists (8) in addition to converting three goals. She was an academic all-Big Ten selection.
Ellis had the second highest shooting percentage last season (.320) and the third most goals (8). She was a first team all-Big Ten selection, a regional all-American and a third team all-America pick by Women's Field Hockey.com.
Pfeiffer led the team in points (38), goals (15), game winners (4), shots (93) and was second in assists (8). She was a first team all-Big Ten selection, regional all-American, first team all-American by Women's Field Hockey.com and a second team selection by the NFHCA.
Beamesderfer was a solid defender for the Hawkeyes last year. She converted on the only shot she attempted. Beamesderfer was a first team all-Big Ten selection, regional all-American, second team all-American by Women's Field Hockey.com and a third team selection by the NFHCA.
Munley led the team in saves (65) for the third year in a row. She recorded four shutouts, in addition to playing 61 minutes of a fifth team shutout.
"Caroline Blaum and Tricia Dean will play in the attack," Griesbaum said. "Roz Ellis, Lauren Pfeiffer, Meg Beamesderfer and Heather Schnepf will contribute to the defense. Lissa Munley will join Barb Weinberg to share the duties in goal."
Goalkeepers, Weinberg and Munley, will be coached by University of Iowa and Midwest team assistant coach Lisa Cellucci. Cellucci coached Weinberg during her time at Iowa in goal. She led the Hawkeyes four consecutive years in saves while being named a first team all-American by NFHCA her senior season.
Schnepf, completed her eligibility after the 2006 season. During her career as a Hawkeye, she was a NFHCA first team all-American as a senior and a second team selection as a junior, a three time regional all-American and all-Big Ten selection. She was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, twice becoming only the third player in history to earn the honor in back-to-back years.
"The Iowa athletes represented themselves very well within the Midwest High Performance Training Center," said Griesbaum. "Having six returning Hawkeyes on the squad of 18 is very impressive and a direct correlation to their skill, fitness, and the intensity they have displayed over the two weekends of training."
Click HERE for the Big Ten Network home page.