Former Wissahickon High School star Katie O'Donnell beat out another former area standout yesterday and was named the Honda collegiate woman athlete of the year for field hockey.
O'Donnell, a junior who led Maryland to a school-best 23-1 record and the runner-up spot to North Carolina in the NCAA Division I championship this season, finished ahead of three other nominees in the voting. They included Princeton sophomore Katie Reinprecht, a graduate of Mount St. Joseph.
O'Donnell, a member of the U.S. national field hockey team since 2005, led the nation with 87 points and 31 assists this season and became the 24th player in NCAA history to reach 200 career points in only her third year of eligibility.
"I was speechless when I first heard it, and I'm not usually at a loss for words," O'Donnell said. "Winning this award makes this season one I will never forget."
A three-time Atlantic Coast Conference offensive player of the year, O'Donnell holds numerous Maryland and conference records. With 28 goals and 31 assists this season, she became the first Maryland player to surpass 25 goals and 30 assists in a season. She is the school's career leader with 208 points and 74 assists.
In a 7-5 win over Princeton in the NCAA semifinals, O'Donnell posted nine points for a new playoff record.
Winning the field hockey award automatically nominates O'Donnell for the Honda Broderick Cup that is given to the nation's top female collegiate athlete.
"Winning that would be amazing," O'Donnell said.