DEKALB – The Northern Illinois University women’s basketball team had six student-athletes named to the 2018-19 Academic All-MAC Team, the Mid-American Conference announced on Monday.
Senior Mikayla Voigt, redshirt-junior Ally May, juniors Myia Starks and Abby Woollacott, redshirt-sophomore Paulina Castro, and sophomore Riley Blackwell each earned the honor for their achievements in the classroom. NIU was one of four programs to have six honorees, with Miami leading the MAC with eight selections.
Voigt, a Nursing major with a 3.933 grade point average, was named to the Academic All-American Second Team by the College Sports Information Directors of America this year. She was also named to the All-MAC Second Team. The senior led NIU in scoring with 19.5 points per game and 98 three-pointers which are second-most in a single season in program history. On Dec. 8, Voigt set NIU and MAC single-game records with 52 points and 11 three-pointers in the Huskies’ win over Western Illinois. She finished her career fifth on the NIU scoring chart with 1,741 points. This is Voigt’s third consecutive Academic All-MAC honor.
May earned her second consecutive Academic All-MAC honor. A Nursing major with a 3.802 GPA, May led NIU in rebounding with 8.6 rebounds per game which was fourth-best in the MAC. The forward had six double-doubles on the year, including a career-high 18-point effort with 15 rebounds at Bowling Green on Jan. 16. She pulled down a career-high 17 boards with 16 points in NIU’s 109-102 double overtime win over Brown on Dec. 31.
Woollacott and Castro were named to the Academic All-MAC team for the second straight year as well. A Rehabilitation and Disability Services major with a 3.854 GPA, Woollacott played in 31 of 32 games this season. The Rockford Lutheran graduate recorded her first career double-double on Feb. 6 with 11 points and 10 rebounds against Bowling Green in 14 minutes off the bench. Castro, a Health Science/Pre-Physical Therapy with a 3.588 GPA, also played in 31 games this year. She tied her career-high in scoring with 14 points in NIU’s win over Chicago State on Dec. 21.
Starks, a Marketing major with a 3.615 GPA, earned her first Academic All-MAC honor. The junior guard led NIU in assists with 3.1 per game. She tied a career-high with 25 points in the Huskies win over Brown, and finished the season third on the team in scoring with 11.7 points per game. Starks scored 20 points in NIU’s 70-69 win over Western Michigan in the first round of the MAC Tournament.
Blackwell, an Accountancy major with a 3.799 GPA, was also named to the Academic All-MAC Team for the first time in her career. The sophomore forward averaged 5.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game while starting all 32 games. Blackwell scored a career-high 16 points in NIU’s 82-71 win over Miami on Jan. 5 to open MAC play, adding eight rebounds. On Feb. 6 against Bowling Green, Blackwell was a perfect 5-for-5 from the field with four three-pointers on her way to 14 points with seven rebounds.
To qualify for the Academic All-MAC honor, a student-athlete must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have participated in at least 50 percent of the contests for that particular sport.