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Volleyball wins tournament, advances to nationals

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College volleyball team won both the conference championship and post-season tournament to advance to national competition for the first time since 1983.

The Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference named Kristen Schrag, senior from Moundridge, Defensive Specialist-Libero of the Year for the second straight year. She finishes her career at Bethel with the school record for digs. During the 2008 regular season, she was KCAC Defensive Specialist-Libero of the Week five out of nine weeks.

Bethel coach Chad Schilling received KCAC Coach of the Year honors.

The Threshers beat Kansas Wesleyan University Nov. 6 in the last regular-season match. With Bethany College beating Friends University, the win put Bethel in sole possession of first place in the KCAC and gave them the home court for the conference tournament Nov. 14-15.

Bethel defeated KWU again in the KCAC Tournament semi-final Nov. 14 and Bethany in the final Nov. 15 to advance to the play-in round of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics national tournament Nov. 22 at Doane College, Crete, Neb.

Along with Schrag, senior Kari Thimm, Beatrice, Neb., was named to the All-KCAC 1st Team. Lindsey Oliver, senior from McPherson, Bethany Thiesen, sophomore from Moundridge, and Christy Weems, junior from Topeka, were named to the All-KCAC 2nd Team.

Bethel College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. Founded in 1887, it is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Bethel is known for its academic excellence and was the only Kansas private college to be ranked in’s listing of “America’s Best Colleges” for 2008 and one of only two Kansas colleges listed in Colleges of Distinction 2008-09. For more information, see the Bethel Web site at

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