Christiansen and Sander garner Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week honors
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Christiansen and Sander garner Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week honors
BEMIDJI, Minn. -- Bemidji State University’s Kelli Christiansen (Jr., Bemidji, Minn.) and Ryan Sander (Sr., 6-2, St. James, Minn.) have been named Beaver Pride Athletes of the Week after recording outstanding athletic accomplishments during the week of March 21-27.

Christiansen went 2-0 in singles on the week and 1-1 in doubles with two Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference matches against University of Mary and University of Minnesota Duluth. Christiansen was instrumental in delivering BSU’s second win of the season in a 8-1 victory over U-Mary on March 25. Against UMD, Christiansen picked up the Beavers’ lone singles win with a 5-7, 6-2, 1-0 decision over former Bemidji High School teammate Brittany Thompson. Against the Marauders, Christiansen delivered a 6-4, 6-3 victory at No. 3 singles and teamed with Kara Johnson (Anoka, Minn.) at No. 1 doubles to pick up that duo’s first doubles victory of the season.

This week’s Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week selection is the first of Christiansen’s career and marks the third for the women’s tennis team in the 2010-11 season. She follows Katherine Wolak (Jr., Geneseo, Ill.) and Meg Hafdahl (Virginia, Minn.).

Sander threw a 1-0 complete game shutout March 27 in BSU’s NSIC-opener at Upper Iowa University, recording his first-career complete game shutout. The Beavers got a run in the top of the first inning and that is all Sander needed for the win, scattering six hits, fanning seven batters and allowing just two free passes. The last time the Beavers won 1-0 was March 2, 2003 at home versus Concordia University, St. Paul. Sander also threw 4.2 innings of relief baseball against Minnesota State March 21. In that game he only allowed three runs to the high-powered Maverick offense on six hits, while striking out five batters and issuing zero walks. In all he pitched 11.2 innings and struck out 12 batters with only two walks. Of the 12 hits he allowed on the week, just two were for extra bases. He sits 1-0 this season with a team-leading 2.16 ERA (at least 0.7 innings pitched/team game).

The Beaver Pride weekly award marks the first of the season for Sander and second (April 7, 2010) of his career. The award is also a first for the BSU baseball team his season.

Sander and the baseball squad (9-9, 3-1 NSIC) will take to the road for an NSIC four-game series against Augustana College April 2-3. A doubleheader is scheduled to be played each day beginning at 12 p.m.

Christiansen and the Beavers (2-9, 1-6 NSIC) will next take to the court April 2 against University of Minnesota, Crookston in Grand Forks, N.D. Minnesota, Crookston joins U-Mary as one of two teams that have yet to pick up a conference victory this season in the NSIC.