Jan. 6, 2009
DeKalb, Ill. - Northern Illinois volleyball senior Irene Johnson (Schaumburg, Ill./Schaumburg) was selected to the Academic All-Mid-American Conference team for the second straight year along with junior Meagan Schoenrock (Sylvania, Ohio/Northview), who earned her first selection as voted on by the faculty athletic representatives at MAC institutions.
Three other Huskies received honorable mention recognition as senior Jody Hardwick (Crystal Lake, Ill./South/St. Louis) and juniors Monica Lang (Chicago, Ill./Marist) and Amanda Tadla (Oak Lawn, Ill./Oak Lawn) all made the list, which gives the program its largest amount of selections to the Academic All-MAC team in a single season.
With her second selection, Johnson joins Marie Zidek as the only Huskie volleyball players to earn the honor twice in a career. To qualify, a student-athlete must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have participated in at least 50 percent of the volleyball contests. Johnson has a cumulative GPA of 3.84 and is majoring in family social services. She ranked third on the squad with 278 kills (2.38/set) and 306.5 points. She reached double-figures in kills 14 times in 2008, including a streak of four matches in a row to end the season as she finished the year with double digit kills in nine of the last 12 matches. She eclipsed the 15 kill mark three times on the year and recorded her only double-double against Western Michigan on October 30 with 12 kills and 13 digs. She also tallied 72 digs and 46 blocks. She has been nominated for the Lincoln Academy Student Laureate Award, which is given to an outstanding senior from each of the four-year degree-granting institutions of higher learning in Illinois.
Schoenrock's first selection marks the only time in NIU volleyball history that a pair of teammates have garnered Academic All-MAC honors in the same season. The Huskies have now had at least one player earn the honor for four years in a row. Schoenrock has a cumulative GPA of 3.41 and is majoring in visual communication. She was named to the All-Mid-American Conference First Team, becoming the fourth in program history to earn All-MAC honors three times. She was named to three All-Tournament teams. She tallied her 1,000th career kill against Western Michigan on Sept. 25, becoming the 16th Huskie to do so, and currently is 14th on the all-time list (1,110). She ranked as high as second in the nation in kills per set and finished 16th (4.33/set). She set career-highs with 507 kills, 118 digs, 543 points and hit .232. She had six matches with 20 or more kills, including a career-best 29 against Western Michigan on Oct. 30. She was a CVU.com National Top Performer for the week of Sept. 8 as NIU went 5-0 and she registered 81 kills and hit .404.
Hardwick owns a cumulative GPA of 3.52 and is a nursing major. She ranked second on the team in aces with 23 and totaled 124 digs (1.24/set). She had a season-high 11 digs versus Ball State on October 10 and registered two aces in a match seven times.
Lang has a cumulative GPA of 3.68 and is majoring in elementary education. She recorded 91 digs and 12 aces. She had a season-high 11 digs against Eastern Michigan on November 7 and totaled two aces in a match twice.
Tadla possess a 3.30 GPA as a physical education major. She tallied career highs this season in kills (16), assists (654), aces (17), digs (123) and points (37.5), while leading the team in assists (9.48/set). She set a career mark with 53 assists against Toledo on November 14 as she totaled 50 or more assists twice in 2008. She recorded a career-high 11 digs twice this season and had one match with 10 as she recorded her first three career double-doubles.