Bemidji State Athletics hand out year-end awards at annual Beaver Nation Celebration

Apr. 24—BEMIDJI — Bemidji State Athletics honored its 386 student-athletes at the 2024 Beaver Nation Celebration Tuesday night. A night of celebrating the triumphs and successes of its student-athletes was capped when four Beavers were selected from a pool of nominations as Bemidji State's Student-Athletes of the Year.

Bemidji State Women's Soccer defender Megan Ko and men's golfer Caden Lick were voted as the Beavers' 2023-24 Female and Male Newcomers of the Year. Women's soccer defender Halle Peterson and men's hockey defenseman Kyle Looft were highlighted as BSU's Female and Male Student-Athletes of the Year.

In addition, softball senior Stella Dolan was named the recipient of the fifth annual BSU Community Impact Award for her involvement in campus groups and service to the community.

Sixteen student-athletes also excelled in the classroom, achieving a perfect 4.0 GPA, and were named Female and Male Scholar-Athletes of the Year. Zack Seitz (Football); Bill Ketola (Football); Logan Schoepp (Golf); Logan Acheson (Hockey); Patrik Satosaari (Hockey); Rachel Koenig (Basketball); Sydney White (Basketball); Mary Goodwin (Cross Country/Track); Abbie Thompson (Hockey); Taylor Nelson (Hockey); Isabella Vannavong (Soccer); Katrina Barthelt (Soccer); Lilian Wade (Soccer); Alyssa Hill (Track/Basketball); Kylie Struble (Volleyball); and Lauren Sitter (Volleyball) were all recognized as Scholar-Athletes of the Year.

The Bemidji State Volleyball team was recognized as this year's Outstanding Female Academic Team, compiling a team GPA of 3.72, and the Men's Hockey team was awarded the Outstanding Male Academic Team, totaling a team GPA of 3.58.

In total, 61 seniors were recognized during the event in addition to 16 NSIC Myles Brand Academic with Distinction Award winners and two NSIC Elite 18 Award winners — Maggie Cade (Soccer) and Logan Schoepp (Golf).

Dolan has made a tremendous impact throughout the community while also serving on student and professional committees. Dolan has served on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, which has organized numerous events to help people within the community. She has volunteered her time with the United Way of Bemidji, the Mount Zion Church Soup Kitchen and has helped teach multiple youth softball programs throughout the Bemidji and St. Paul communities.

Dolan has served on many young professionals committees, including the BSU President's Student Commission Council and the Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce's Young Professionals Network. She has presented for Minnesota Undergraduate Scholars, the Nebraska Business Honors Academy Case Competition, and the Bemidji State Student Achievement Conference. In addition, Dolan has been awarded the NSIC Myles Brand All-Academic Award. She's a three-time NSIC All-Academic Team of Excellence selection and a two-time BSU Most Outstanding Major Award winner in Sport Management.

Ko was one of four freshmen on the team to play in all 23 games and made 22 starts, second most among BSU rookies. She was an All-NSIC Second Team selection and helped the Beavers to an NSIC Tournament Championship and a third consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. Logging 1,443 minutes on the pitch — the seventh most on the team — Ko helped the Beavers' backline finish third in the NSIC with just 16 goals against and 12 shutouts. She also contributed one assist and three shots on goal in the offensive half.

Lick appeared in 25 rounds for the Beavers during his freshman season and averaged 75.8 strokes per 18 holes with an average of four-over-par, the third-best average on the team. His best finish this season was at the NSIC Championship, where he tied for second, earning NSIC All-Tournament Team status. He posted his best round this season of 72 on five different occasions, with the most recent coming at the NSIC Championship helping the Beavers to their first conference title since 2000.

Peterson led the Beavers by playing in 94.7% of the team's minutes on the pitch, totaling 1,980 minutes during the 2023 season. She was named the NSIC Defensive Player of the Year, All-NSIC First Team selection and is a two-time All-Region selection. She helped the Beavers to an NSIC Tournament Championship and a third consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament.

Peterson solidified the Beavers' backline, which limited opponents to just 95 shots on goal and 16 goals over 23 games, including 12 shutouts. Not only a shutdown defender, Peterson also contributed offensively, tying for the NSIC lead with four goals from the backline. She also excelled in the classroom and was a Scholar All-America First Team selection.

Looft captained the Beavers to a MacNaughton Cup championship and Mason Cup championship game appearance during the 2023-24 season. He was named the CCHA's Defenseman of the Year and Best Defensive Defenseman while also earning All-CCHA First Team honors.

Looft finished second on the team despite missing six games due to injury and posting 28 points in 32 games. He led the team with 22 assists. He led all league defensemen in points and finished seventh among all league skaters, averaging 0.88 points per game. Looft finished second in the conference with an on-ice rating of plus-17. Four times during the season, he was named league Defenseman of the Week and twice the Defenseman of the Month.