MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University Sports Hall of Fame will induct four new members on Saturday, April 13 in the Great Lakes Room of the University Center. The dinner and program begins at 6 p.m. and the Sports Hall of Fame ceremony will once again be held in conjunction with the Student-Athlete Awards Banquet.
The final inductee into the class of 2013 is Lúcia (Pereira) Shyiak. Shyiak lettered three times in volleyball from 1995-98 and was a two-time All-American. She holds NMU records for kills per game in a career (4.58), kills per game in a season (4.79) and kills in a match (33).
During the 1997 season, Shyiak was named a first-team All-American by the American Volleyball Coaches Association and Asics/Volleyball Monthly. She was also named to the NCAA II Elite Eight All-Tournament Team, All-Great Lakes Region (AVCA) and Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference First Team. The Wildcats finished with an overall record of 35-4 and a perfect 18-0 in the GLIAC and won 28 straight matches during the season.
“Lucia was really dynamic and explosive,” former NMU and current University of Michigan volleyball coach Mark Rosen said. “She wasn’t real big, but was a good jumper and had a really good arm. It was always funny to watch the other teams' reactions to her during warm-ups. You could always see the concern on their faces.”
Shyiak was also a first-team AVCA and Asics/Volleyball Month All-American in the 1998 season. She was the Great Lakes Region Player of the Year and GLIAC First Team selection as well. The 1998 team finished 30-6 and 19-0 in the GLIAC.
“Lucia was a player that came in and carried on the elite tradition of NMU volleyball that Jim Moore began and we were able to sustain, even after some people expected us to drop back a little,” Rosen said. “She was somebody who kept us elite.”
Shyiak finished her NMU career third with 1,256 kills. Her .321 career attack percentage ranks fifth. The ‘Cats were 98-15 in her three seasons on the team.
“Early on we tried to make her a well-rounded player and have her involved in the ball control, but that wasn’t her forte or interest,” added Rosen. “We created this role for her to get tons of points and she embraced the role and system, and dominated on offense.”
Shyiak was born in Petrópolis, Brazil and started playing volleyball at the age of 11. At the age of 14, she moved to Rio de Janeiro to play for Supergasbras for a year and a half before being selected to play for the state team that won Nationals.
After Rio, she moved to Belo Horizonte and played for Minas Tenis Clube for a season, in 1989. She started her collegiate career at NMU in 1995. She redshirted her first season (1995) and played in 54 sets in 1996 before suffering a season-ending knee injury in early October.
Shyiak graduated from NMU in May of 1999 with a degree in marketing and obtained a job working for what is now ABC 5 & 10 as an account executive before being promoted to sales manager. While in Marquette, she joined the Rotary West in Marquette, became a member of the NMU Hall of Fame search committee and a member of the athletic council.
She is married to Dave and has two sons (Kristian and Sheldon) and one daughter (Isabela). Dave was a co-captain on NMU’s 1991 NCAA Championship hockey team. He has a bachelor’s and master’s degree from NMU, and began his coaching career at Northern under Rick Comley in 1992-93. He was the head coach for the Alaska Anchorage Seawolves for eight seasons.
Tickets for the evening are $20 for adults and $15 for students. They can be purchased at the NMU Superior Dome Ticket Office or by calling 906-227-1032.
Photos: Lucia (Pereira) Shyiak
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