EDINA, Minn. -- Fifteen Bemidji State University student-athletes were recognized today when the Western Collegiate Hockey Association announced its All-WCHA Academic Team as a part of its postseason awards list.
With twenty-one members of the team’s 27-man roster selected as recipients of the 2015-16 academic award, BSU ranks third among its fellow WCHA’s member institutions.
Members of the Beavers’ 2015-16 team recognized as part of the All-WCHA Academic Team include: Nate Arentz (Jr., F, Lakeville, Minn.); Kyle Bauman (So., F, Apopka, Fla.); Brett Beauvais (So., D, Prince Edward Island); Michael Bitzer (So., G, Moorhead, Minn.); Myles Fitzgerald (So., F, Port Alberni, British Columbia); Markus Gerbrandt (Sr., F, Edmonton, Alberta); Brendan Harms (Jr., F, Steinbach, Manitoba); Jordan Heller (So., F, Bemidji, Minn.) Graeme McCormack (Sr., D, Thunder Bay, Ontario); Reid Mimmack (Jr., G, Brainerd, Minn.); Charlie O’Connor (Jr., F, Elk Grove Village, Ill.); John Parker (Sr., F, Lake Geneva, Wash.); Ruslan Pedan (Jr., D, Moscow, Russia); Carter Struthers (Jr., D, Weyburn, Saskatchewan); Jesse Wilkins (Jr., G, Calgary, Alberta)
To earn recognition as a member of the All-WCHA Academic Team, student-athletes must: 1) have completed one year of residency at present institution, prior to the current academic year; and 2) have a grade point average of at least 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) for the previous two semesters or three quarters.
A total of 140 student-athletes, representing all 10 WCHA-member institutions, have earned distinction as members of the men’s 20151-6 All-WCHA Academic Team.
Today’s announcement came in conjunction with the WCHA’s individual award winners and All-WCHA honorees. Michigan Tech’s Alex Petan was named WCHA Player of the Year; Teddy Blueger of Minnesota State University, Mankato earned Casey Nelson earned Defensive Player of the Year laurels; league coaches voted Ferris State University’s Corey Mackin Rookie of the Year; the Outstanding Student-Athlete of the Year is MTU’s Jamie Phillips and Michigan tech head coach Mel Pearson pulled down the WCHA Coach of the Year award.
With the 2015-16 regular season behind it, Bemidji State (16-14-6; 11-12-5 WCHA) opens the WCHA playoffs as the No. 6 seed and will face Bowling Green State University (20-12-6; 16-7-5 WCHA), the tournament’s No. 3 seed, at BGSU Ice Arena in Bowling Green, Ohio. March 11-13. The best-of-three series is set to get underway Friday at 6:07 p.m. (CT), with game two scheduled for at 6:07 p.m. Saturday and if necessary, game three at 6:07 p.m. Sunday. The series winner will earn a berth into the WCHA Final Five March 17-19 at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich.
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.