Bemidji State men’s hockey continues to shine in classroom
Thursday, January 6, 2005
Team posts grade-point average of 3.18 during Fall 2004 semester

BEMIDJI, Minn. - Bemidji State men’s ice hockey continued its recent history of standout performances in the classroom, posting a team grade-point average of 3.18 during the Fall 2004 semester. Two BSU skaters posted perfect 4.0 GPAs in the fall term - defensemen Peter Jonsson and forward Andrew Murray, both seniors.

With the fall performance, the squad’s cumulative grade-point average now stands at 3.31 and 22 of 26 skaters sport cumulative GPAs higher than 3.0.

“It is nice to have consistency out of our academics,” BSU head coach Tom Serratore said. “It’s no different than your play on the ice; the more effort you put in, the more consistent you are, the more success you’ll achieve.

“The last few years the guys have achieved a lot,” Serratore added. “The freshmen know coming in that strong academics is part of the culture of our program. They know they are expected to work hard and smart on the ice, and we expect the same thing to carry over to the classroom.”

BSU has flourished academically under the direction of assistant coach Bert Gilling, who oversees academic affairs for the program. Under Gilling’s guidance, BSU’s cumulative team GPA has climbed from 2.58 to 3.31 in the last six years.

“We want to create a strong foundation at BSU, athletically, academically and competitively,” Gilling said. “We are definitely on our way academically. This is a tribute to the student-athletes in our program and to our staff. This shows the commitment and pride our student-athletes and coaches have in representing Bemidji State University at the Division I level.”

The fall success in the classroom continues Bemidji State’s history of academic excellence. BSU has established a College Hockey America record by having 16 players named to the Academic All-CHA team each of the last two years, and since 2001 the Beavers lead CHA with 39 Academic All-Conference selections. Niagara is a distant second with 30 selections in the same timeframe.

BSU’s excellence in the classroom has been recognized across the nation. In the last two years, BSU has four College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-District V selections. There have been just five Division I men’s ice hockey players honored on the Academic All-District V team in that span.

Bemidji State is 9-7-0, and is second place in College Hockey America at 4-2-0 in league play. The Beavers continue a Division I-era record eight-game homestand this weekend, playing host to the Air Force Academy Falcons, Jan. 7-8. Opening faceoffs are slated for 7:35 and 7:05 p.m., respectively, from the John Glas Fieldhouse on the BSU campus. BSU is 10-0-1 in its last 11 games against Air Force and has won each of the last eight meetings.