BSU’s Smith, Johnson named NSIC Honorable Mention
Friday, May 4, 2007
BSU’s Smith, Johnson named NSIC Honorable Mention

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Sophomore infielders Bridget Smith (Burnsville, Minn.) and Mara Johnson (Bemidji, Minn.) were named All-Conference Honorable Mention as announced by the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference office on Friday evening at its awards banquet which is held in conjunction with the 2006 NSIC Softball Championship in Marshall, Minn.

The all-conference award is the second of Smith’s two-year career and the first for University of Minnesota, Duluth transfer Mara Johnson. This also marks the second year in a row that Bemidji State placed two players on the all-conference list. Last season Smith and outfielder Jamie Docken (Jr., Owatonna, Minn.) were each selected.

Johnson, who was BSU’s sure-handed utility infielder, spent time at first base, second base, and third base while starting in all 38 games and amassing a team-leading batting average of .368. Her batting average ranked her fourth in the NSIC. Johnson also led the team in slugging percentage (.623) and on-base percentage (.417), while tying for the team lead in home runs (5) and hits (39). She ended the season second on the team in runs scored with 20 and third for the Beavers with 18 RBI. Johnson also compiled a very solid .957 fielding percentage, committing just four errors in 92 chances.

Smith, BSU’s everyday shortstop, started all 38 games for the Beavers this season and had the second highest batting averag on the team with at a .333 clip. Smith led the team in at-bats (117) and tied for the team lead in doubles (8) and hits (39). She was also third on the team in slugging (.453) and OBP (.350). Smith clubbed two home runs on the season and had a team-best only striking out once every 19.5 at-bats.

Regular season co-champions Southwest Minnesota State and Winona State placed led the league in All-NSIC selections with six and five, respectively. In addition, SW Minnesota State took three of the four individual awards with Erin Dickhausen being named the NSIC Player of the Year, Amanda Johnson named NSIC Pitcher of the Year, and head coach Shawn Semler selected as the NSIC’s Coach of the Year.

The NSIC’s other individual award, the Rookie of the Year, was given to the University of Mary’s Dre Brunskill.

Bemidji State’s season also came to an end on Friday after being eliminated from NSIC Tournament by Wayne State. Under first year head coach Shane Veenker, the Beavers finished the 2007 season with a 10-28 record, which included a 4-14 mark in the NSIC.