Larva and Leonhardt garner Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week honors
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Larva and Leonhardt garner Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week honors
BEMIDJI, Minn. -- Bemidji State University track and field standouts Ashley Larva (Fr., Floodwood, Minn.) and Brian Leonhardt (So., Blaine, Minn) have been named Beaver Pride Athletes of the Week after recording outstanding athletic performances during the week of April 18-24.

Larva assembled the most complete performance of her career April 23 at the North Country Invitational having a hand in two first-place finishes.  The freshman took first place in the long jump with a leap of 15 feet, six and one-half inches. In addition, she was a part of a BSU 4-by-100-meter relay team that took first place and missed the school record by less than five tenths of a second with a season-best time of 49.78.

This week’s Beaver Pride Athlete of the Week selection is the first of Larva’s young career and marks the sixth occasion a member of the BSU women’s track and field team has been recognized during the 2010-11 campaign. She follows senior captain Kristi Buerkle (Stacy, Minn.) who is a five-time recipient of the award this season.

Leonhardt led the BSU men’s track and field team at the North Country Invitational.  The sophomore won two throwing events and garnered runner-up honors in another.  He won the discus title with a mark of 151-05 and out distanced the field in the shot put with a throw of 49-01. In addition, Leonhardt placed second in the hammer throw stretching the tape to a season-best 159-02, ranking him sixth in the NSIC in the event.

Also a tight end on the BSU football team, Leonhardt demonstrated his well-rounded athletic ability this week wrapping up the spring football season with two catches for 17 yards and a touchdown in the Beavers’ annual Green/White Game.

Leonhardt stands as the fifth member of the BSU men’s track and field team to be selected for Beaver Pride’s weekly award, while it stands as the second of his career.  While he follows Jacob Nelson (Jan. 19), Tandy Juell (Feb. 16 and April 13) and Raphael Gelo (Mar. 2), he previously garnered the award Oct. 21, 2010.

The BSU men’s and women’s track and field teams are in the midst of a busy week of competition.  Select members of the teams will participate in the Kip Jarvin Open at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa Friday, while the entire BSU contingent will complete in the Al Sahli Invitational Saturday at Northern State University in Aberdeen, S.D.  In addition, BSU’s multi-event athletes will open the 2011 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) Outdoor Track and Field Championships Sunday and Monday with the heptathlon and decathlon.