NCAA transfer McNulty headlines stellar LU recruiting class
Ont. - Head coach Jon Kreiner and the Lakehead University Thunderwolves women's
basketball program are proud to announce the commitments of three
student-athletes for the 2010-11 season.
Headlining the incoming trio is NCAA D1 transfer forward Lacey McNulty (Belleville, Ontario) with freshman guards Darcy Zinck (Halifax, Nova Scotia) and Megan Barss (Regina, Saskatchewan) also joining a deep LU recruiting class that includes previously committed Katie Ulakovic (Thunder Bay, Ontario), Ashley Randall (Hamilton, Ontario) and Lindsay Inkila (Thunder Bay, Ontario).
These six players will join an already strong and experienced Thunderwolves squad as they look to improve on their third place finish in the OUA West Division.
The addition of McNulty, a transferring junior who previously played two seasons for the NCAA D1 University of Toledo Rockets, fortifies an already talented Thunderwolves frontcourt that includes OUA West second team all-star Lindsay Druery.
Named an all Canadian in her final high school season, McNulty boasts a strong inside-outside offensive game and superb rebounding and defensive ability. She will make an immediate impact for a Lakehead team that has big plans following its best season in over a decade.
“Lacey is a versatile forward that can shoot the three, slash hard to the basket and post up inside," says coach Kreiner. "A tremendously skilled player, Lacey will add a huge presence for us inside both offensively and defensively and will provide high percentage scoring and rebounding. Lacey is also a great passer and has a great understanding of the game. Her experiences have helped shape Lacey into a mature leader and she has already fit in unbelievably well with her new teammates."
McNulty, who attended Moira Secondary School along with Thunderwolves men's basketball player Jamie Searle is eager to pursue a CIS Championship with her new teammates.
"'To get something you've never had, you must do something you've never done.' I think that this quote is perfect for our team next year because we all have a goal to win OUA's and win a national championship." she says. "In order to do that, we have to push ourselves and each other. At times it's going to hurt, and we are going to want to give up, but we have to remember to keep pushing each other because in order to win a national championship we have to work harder than we've ever worked."
McNulty says that the close knit nature of Lakehead and the Thunderwolves program made her decision to pursue her academic and athletic goals at 955 Oliver Road a natural one.
came [to Thunder Bay] for my visit, it felt like a family and I was completely
comfortable," McNulty says. "When you are a part of a team, you are
together all the time, and you not only look at the girls as teammates, but as
sisters. And I can honestly say when I came to visit, I felt like I met my new
I loved the campus and the atmosphere of a smaller school. Coming from a much bigger school I know people can get lost in the numbers, but at LU it's much smaller and more personal and that’s what I need to succeed."
Hometown: Belleville, ON
High School Team: Moira Secondary School
Club Team: Belleville Spirits
Major: General Arts
Key Stats (High school): 16 PPG, 9 RPG; amassed over 1500 points, 1000 rebounds, 300 blocks, 250 steals and 250 assists in 120 games career games.
On Court Achievements: Led Moira SS to 26-9 record and an OFSAA bronze medal in senior year; three-time captain of Belleville Spirits and twice captain of high school team; MVP of club team all five years played; youngest player at Ontario Center for Performance Canadian Basketball Program; member of Team Ontario in 2002; all Canadian in senior year; Athlete of the Year and Wall of Fame inductee at Moira SS (2005); Pittsburgh 5 Star Basketball Camp all-star; named top 20 all-star at Blue Chip Camp in Kentucky in 2003 and 2004.
Key Stats (University of Toledo, Ohio, USA): Career highs of 14 points vs. Dayton (in only 17 minutes); 6 rebounds vs. Kent State and averaged 3 PPG over two-year NCAA D1 career.
A hard-nosed guard, Zinck will bring defence and court savvy to the Thunderwolves' backcourt. Zinck has a history of winning, having helped her Citadel Phoenix high school team to one silver and two gold medals at the Nova Scotia Provincial Championships.
A veteran of the Thunder Selects club basketball program where she has been coached by former LU assistant Brandon Rafuse, Zinck has been on coach Kreiner's recruiting radar for over two years.
“Darcy can play all guard positions but will be a very good CIS player at the off guard," says coach Kreiner. "Darcy is tough, hard-working and smart. She has been coached by a tremendous club coach in Brandon Rafuse since a young age and former Winnipeg Wesman all-star Janet Wells has done a great job at the high school level. Darcy will improve our team defence and will challenge everyone with her tenacity, hustle and unselfish play.”
Zinck's workhorse mentality has garnered the praise of both Rafuse and Wells.
“Darcy is one of the hardest working players I have ever coached," says Citadel head coach Wells. "She is very dedicated to improving her game and never misses an opportunity to get in the gym. She always gives 100% effort. Darcy has a positive attitude and has great leadership skills. She is always encouraging and pushing her teammates to become the best they can be. She is a very unselfish player and has the best interest of the team before her own."
Adds coach Rafuse; “I have been very fortunate to coach Darcy since she was in Grade 8 and over the years she has proven herself to be one of the hardest working and toughest kids that we’ve ever had in our program. Thunderwolves fans will appreciate her well-balanced skill set and her willingness to sacrifice her body for the benefit of the team. She loves the challenge of a tough defensive assignment and never turns down the opportunity to take a charge. I wish Darcy nothing but the best as she takes her game to the University level.”
Zinck joins a Lakehead program that including Nova Scotia natives Tasia McKenna, Lisa Styles and Sarah Gordon on its roster. The incoming freshman says that her decision to head west to Thunder Bay was based on several factors.
“I chose Lakehead because it had everything I was looking for; strong academically and athletically," Zinck says. "It's a strong up-and-coming program with a coaches and players that I have a ton of respect for. It also gives me the chance to move away from home for a while, which was something that I thought was important for me to do this year. University basketball is something I've always wanted to play, and Lakehead gives me the opportunity to play with a lot of seniors in my first year. I can learn so much from the girls and I look forward to it."
Hometown: Halifax, NS
High School Team: Citadel Phoenix
Club Team: Thunder Selects
Key Stats (High school): 13 PPG, 4 RPG, 2 APG, 42% FG; close to 2 charges drawn per game.
On Court Achievements: Won two gold and one silver Nova Scotia Provincial Championship medal with Citadel; Hustle Award winner at Moncton Classic; Defensive MVP of Dairytown Classic; Halifax Metro all-star in grade 11 and first team all-star in grade 12.
Off Court Achievements: 85% honour student.
A talented shooter and member of Team Saskatchewan, Barss helped her Riffel HS Royals to three Regina city championships while her Firebirds club basketball team finished fourth at the national at Ancaster, Ontario.
Barss is an honour roll student and will study kinesiology while at Lakehead.
“Megan has been very well coached and has a strong desire to continue to grow as a player," Kreiner says. "Her offensive abilities are very good. Megan is a great shooter and has also learned to play with the basketball, making good decisions off the bounce. Megan fits in very well into our system and into our team."
Barss arrives at Lakehead with a glowing endorsement from former CIS National Player of the Year Cymone Bernauer (Bouchard) who now coaches at Riffels HS.
“Megan is a type of player that any coach wants on their roster. She is a student-athlete who manages to balance a busy basketball schedule while maintaining straight A's in her classes. Megan’s commitment to excellence and dedication for self improvement are easily visible every time she steps on the court or in the classroom. She is a very coachable student-athlete who rises to challenges as they are presented with a fearless attitude. Her passion for the game rubs off on everyone around her and her leadership, encouragement, and support have contributed greatly to her teams’ successes. Megan has made a great impact as a point guard in the RIBL (Regina Intercollegiate Basketball League) being a threat on the 3-point line as well as a reckoning force off the dribble. As her discipline continues to improve she will be a great addition to the Lakehead roster in the 2010-2011 CIS season."
Barss says she is looking forward to continuing her development as a student-athlete at Lakehead; “I wanted to combine my education and continue to play basketball at the CIS level. Lakehead has a great kinesiology program and is the 'right-sized' University. The community shows great support of the Thunderwolves basketball programs. Coach Kreiner and his coaching staff run a great program and the time I spent with the team made my decision easy. I was looking for somewhere that felt like home, Lakehead and the people I met, gave me that feeling. I look forward to being a part of a strong program."
Hometown: Regina, SK
High School Team: Riffel Royals
Club Team: Firebirds Basketball Club
Key Stats (High school): 14 PPG, 5 APG, 3 SPG
On Court Achievements: Member of Saskatchewan provincial teams (bronze medalist at the Western Canada Summer Games); three-time city champs and team MVP/captain; club finished fourth at nationals; MVP of U of Manitoba and Calgary Central Memorials Ram’s invitational Tournaments.
Off Court Achievements: 85% + honour student; earned 91 award of Excellence for senior students, chosen by her teachers for her strong academic, school involvement and leadership.
Last Edited: April 23rd, 2010
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