SEWARD, Neb. – A total of eight Bulldogs garnered some form of all-conference recognition as announced by the GPAC on Monday (Nov. 14). Representing the GPAC tournament champion Concordia University women’s soccer squad on the conference’s first team were freshman Sami Birmingham and sophomore Maria Deeter. Second team honors were earned by freshman Rachael Bolin, junior Jeannelle Condame, senior Chrissy Lind and sophomore Ashley Martin. Honorable mention accolades went to juniors Jessica Skerston and Esther Soenksen.
Named a team captain in just her second collegiate season, Deeter has starred in the midfield for the Bulldogs. The Seward native moves up to the first team this season after being named second team all-GPAC as a freshman. She also collected NAIA All-Plains Region honors from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America last season. Deeter has recorded seven goals and five assists while making 20 starts this season.
Birmingham, who hails from Johnston, Iowa, has made a major impact in her rookie season. Her 20 goals lead the team and are the second most ever scored by a Concordia freshman. She shined during the conference tournament, totaling four goals and two assists over the three GPAC postseason victories. She ranks 12th nationally in goals and 19th among all NAIA players with 10 assists. She also ranks ninth nationally in game-winning goals (6).
An honorable mention choice the previous two years, the record-setting Lind found herself on the second team this year. Last week Lind broke the school record for career saves (340). She already held program career standards for shutouts (26), games played (78) and minutes played (6,866). This season she has collected six shutouts while posting a save percentage of .846 and a goals against average of .919.
Condame and Martin are repeat second team all-GPAC selections. A weapon on corners and free kicks, Condame totaled two goals and five assists while starting 20 games this season. Another key part of the back line, Martin assisted three goals and has started all 21 games. Bolin has teamed up with Birmingham up front for a potent one-two punch. Bolin has registered 10 goals and 10 assists and has played in all 21 contests.
In her career, Skerston has now reeled in first team all-conference honors once and honorable mention accolades twice. She ranks second on the team with 11 goals. A Lincoln native, Soenksen has contributed eight goals and 10 assists in 2016. Soenksen emerged with the golden goal in the 1-0 overtime GPAC semifinal win at Midland.
Concordia’s season will continue on Saturday when it plays third-ranked Keiser University (Fla.) (17-1-1) in the opening round of the 2016 NAIA Women’s Soccer National Championships. Kickoff is set for 12 p.m. CT / 1 p.m. ET in West Palm Beach, Fla.