BEMIDJI, Minn. -- Bemidji State University’s Bethany Thompson (Sr., OH, Owatonna, Minn.) and Lance Rongstad (Sr., QB, Eleva, Wis.) have been named Beaver Pride Athletes of the Week after recording outstanding athletic performances during the week of Oct. 22-28.
Thompson, an outside hitter for the BSU volleyball team, took control of last Friday's weekend opener. On Senior Night, the team's lone fourth-year player racked up a match-high 17 kills on an impressive .359 hitting percentage to lead a winning effort against University of Mary, snapping a 13-match losing streak. Thompson followed up that performance with 15 more kills and a .419 hitting percentage on Saturday against Minot State University to bring her kills per set average on the weekend to 5.33. She finished the weekend hitting .386 on 70 attacks (11.67 per game). Thompson also had an ace and seven digs in the match, in which she surpassed her career-high in single-season kills with 311. Now at tenth on BSU's all-time kills list with 957, she is one of two players in the NSIC with more than four kills per game (4.09) and is second in points per game with 4.48.
Thompson’s Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week selection marks the second of the season for a member of the BSU volleyball team, while it stands as the fourth of the senior’s career. She also garnered the accolade Sept. 12 this season and Sept. 7 and Nov. 16 of last season.
Rongstad totaled 341 yards of offense and was responsible for four touchdowns guiding the Bemidji State football team to a 37-20 victory at St. Cloud State University Saturday - the first win at SCSU since 1965. Rongstad recorded 226 yards and a touchdown through the air and posted his fourth-career 100-yard rushing game with 115 yards and a career-high three touchdowns (41-, 1- and 5-yard rushes) on the ground to become the first BSU signal caller to record at least 200 passing and 100 rushing yards in a game since 1992. He carried the ball 21 times to average 5.5 yards per carry. He went 17-for-25 (68%) without an interception, averaged 13.3 yards per completion and hit seven different receivers. Rongstad now has 20 career rushing touchdowns to rank seventh all-time at BSU and first among quarterbacks.
This week’s Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week award marks the third of the season for Rongstad, while it stands as the eighth time the Eleva, Wis. native has been recognized by the organization. He was previously honored for excellence on the football field Sept. 5 and Oct. 3 of this season and Sept. 14, Oct. 12 and Nov. 16 of the 2011 campaign, while the multi-sport athlete earned athlete of the week accolades for his performance on the basketball court Feb. 2, 2011 and Feb. 24, 2010.
Saturday’s game wrapped-up the road schedule for the BSU football team, as it went 2-3 away from Bemidji, Minn. in 2012. The final two games of the season with be played at Chet Anderson Stadium, starting with Minnesota State University Moorhead Nov. 3 at 1 p.m. in the annual Battle for the Axe game – a traveling trophy traded between the teams since 1948.
The Bemidji State volleyball team travels to University of Minnesota Duluth to face the Bulldogs in a mid-week NSIC matchup on Thursday. The match will be followed by another NSIC match up at the BSU Gymnasium on Saturday versus St. Cloud State.
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Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).