McKendree Magazine - Summer 2018

Coaching News

Jim KisgenHead men’s wrestling coach Jim Kisgen was named the NCAA DII Coach of the Year by the National Wrestling Coaches Association, NCAA Central Super Region Coach of the Year and GLVC Coach of the Year. In his 15th season, he led the squad to a 17-5 dual-match record with a first place finish at the GLVC Championships, second place finish at the NCAA Super Regionals and seventh place finish at the NCAA DII National Championships. Since transitioning to the NCAA, he has led the Bearcats to five top 10 national finishes.

Shannon O’KeefeNow in her fourth season as the head coach of the women’s bowling program, Shannon O’Keefe guided the Bearcats to a strong regular-season campaign in 2017-18. The Bearcats won four regular-season tournaments under her leadership before capturing their first MIAA Championship in March. For her efforts, Shannon was named as the cowinner of the 2017-18 MIAA Coach of the Year award, NTCA DII/DIII Coach of the Year and MIAA Coach of the Year (along with McK alum Brandi Branka ’13 who is the head coach at Maryville University). She also won the United States Bowling Congress Queens Tournament, her second major PWBA championship in May.

Jimmy TierneyHead swimming & diving coach Jimmy Tierney was a co-recipient of the GLVC Women’s Coach of the Year honor. In his second season, he led both the women and men’s program to a fourth place finish at the GLVC Championship and had ten qualify for the 2018 NCAA Swimming & Diving National Championships.

Nickie Sanlin, head women and men’s volleyball coach, served as a head coach for the USA Volleyball Women’s Collegiate National Team this summer in Detroit, Mich. She has been a long-time member of the USA High Performance program, which is part of USA Volleyball.

Chris Foster is the new men’s basketball coach for the Bearcats. He spent the last four years as the head coach of Truman State University in Kirksville, Mo. Chris guided the Bulldogs to a 20-win season each year and four GLVC Conference Tournament bids. He earned 83 victories during that span. His 2017-18 squad earned a share of the GLVC West Division title with a 13-5 mark. The Bulldogs reached the championship contest at the GLVC Tournament in 2018 and made appearances at the 2017 and 2018 NCAA Tournament. A 2005 graduate of the University of Northern Iowa (UNI) and a four-year member of the Panthers’ basketball team, Chris played for the UNI teams that made back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Tournament in 2004 and 2005.

Colleen Lischwe is the new head coach of the men’s water polo program. The only current female head coach of a men’s program at the NCAA level, she has also served as the Bearcats’ women’s water polo coach since 2017.






8 teams were recognized with national team academic awards from the American Volleyball Coaches Association, Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC), Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA), College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA), U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) and Women’s Basketball Coaches Association.

12 squads earned Team Academic All-GLVC honors for maintaining a 3.30 GPA.

29 athletes received the GLVC Council of Presidents’ Academic Excellence Award for maintaining at least a 3.5 GPA during their academic career.

35 athletes were named Academic All-American honorees from the American Collegiate Hockey Association, National Wrestling Coaches Association, USTFCCCA, CSCAA, ACWPC, and IWLCA.

37 athletes received the GLVC Brother James Gaffney Distinguished Scholar Award for achieving a 4.0 GPA.

263 athletes were named to the GLVC, Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletics Conference and Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Academic All-Conference squads by maintaining a 3.30 GPA.