WWU's Erickson Red Lion Volleyball Player of Week
Western Washington middle blocker Kayla Erickson (2) had 24 kills to earn Red Lion Player of the Week honors.
Western Washington middle blocker Kayla Erickson (2) had 24 kills to earn Red Lion Player of the Week honors.

Monday, October 1, 2012

PORTLAND, Ore. - Thirteen Great Northwest Athletic Conference athletes, including Western Washington middle blocker  Kayla Erickson have earned Red Lion Player of the Week honors for their performances during the period of Sept. 24-30, 2012.  They include:


Offense – Kayla Erickson, Western Washington (MB, 6-0, So., Gig Harbor, WA) had 24 kills in two matches, including the match-winner as the Vikings handed Western Oregon its first conference loss.  Erickson, who hit for a .388 percentage, also had five blocks in earning Red Lion Offensive Player of the Week honors.  She had 11 kills and a team-high three blocks against the Wolves. Defense – Marcy Hjellum, Central Washington (OH, 5-11, Sr., Kennewick, WA – Kamiakin)  led Central Washington offensively with 39 kills and defensively with 36 digs as the Wildcats ran their win streak to five with road victories at Seattle Pacific and Montana State Billings.  Hjellum, the Red Lion Defensive Player of the Week, also hit for a team high .270 percentage, 94 points better than CWU’s team percentage of .176 in the two matches.   Honorable Mention – Kyndal Williams, Montana State Billings; Samantha Hutchinson, Western Washington; Sam Harthun, Alaska Fairbanks; Allison Oddy,  Alaska Fairbanks; Krissi Kemper, Western Oregon; Cailin Fellows, Seattle Pacific.


Offense – Bo Palmer, Simon Fraser (RB, 5-9, 209, Sr., North Vancouver, BC) rushed for 145 yards on just 17 carries  and scored four touchdowns leading the Clan to a 41-28 home win over Dixie State.  Palmer earned Red Lion Offensive Player of the Week honors scoring in each period – from two yards in the first quarter, 37 early in the second period, 54 late in the third stanza and one midway through the fourth quarter as the Clan earned their first conference victory of the season.  Palmer, who averaged 8.5 yards per rush,  also caught four passes for 23 yards as SFU had a total of 463 yards in total offense. Defense – Isaiah Davis, Central Washington (CB, 6-0, 176, Fr., Bremerton, WA – South Kitsap) had 10 tackles and broke up three passes (including two in the end zone) leading the Wildcats to a 31-3 win over ninth-ranked Humboldt State, which came into the contest ranked ninth nationally in scoring averaging 42.5 points. The Red Lion Defensive Player of the Week award winner also had 98 return yards, including 42 yards on five punt returns and 56 on two kickoffs. His 40-yard return on the game’s opening kickoff set up a 56-yard, 11-play touchdown drive. Special Teams – Alexander Bradt, Western Oregon (P, 6-1, 210, Fr., Salem, OR – West Salem) averaged 42.8 yards on eight punts including a long of 54 in the Wolves’ 20-7 road win at Azusa Pacific to take Red Lion Special Team Player of the Week honors.  Bradt, who had two punts over 50 yards and one inside the 20, currently ranks eighth nationally in punting averaging 44.1 yards per attempt.  Honorable Mention -  Demetrius Sumler, Central Washington; Casey Chinn, Simon Fraser; Cody VonAppen, Western Oregon; Kraig Akins, Western Oregon.


Offense – Justin Wallace, Simon Fraser (M, 5-11, Jr., Kamloops, BC – Thompson Rivers) scored two goals and had four assists as the Clan had a pair of dominating performances in beating third-ranked Seattle Pacific 5-1 and Saint Martin’s 6-0 to earn Red Lion Offensive Player of the Week honors.  Against the Falcons, Wallace earned assists on SFU’s first goals and scored the third in the 29th minute as the Clan bolted to an early 3-0 lead.  Against Saint Martin’s he earned assists on the Clan’s fourth and fifth goals before completing the scoring with an unassisted goal in the 61st minute.  “Justin was brilliant against SPU,” SFU coach Alan Koch said. “He was a constant offensive threat and a big part of why our offense exploded against the No. 3 team in the nation. He continued an impressive week with a great strike against SMU. He is starting to find his stride and is thoroughly deserving of this honor.”  Defense – Matt Besuschko, Simon Fraser (M, 5-10, Sr., Port Moody, BC) led the Clan defense which limited its opponents to just 16 shots in two lopsided wins and also scored a goal. “Matt anchored our defense to two key victories,” Koch said. “He fought through illness to help us contain an excellent SPU attack, and he was the leader of a back 4 against SMU that limited them to very few opportunities. It was also nice to see him go forward and score an excellent goal.” Honorable Mention – Justin Moore, Western Washington; Pat Cole, Western Washington; Jaime Torres, Northwest Nazarene; Dylan Coffee, Northwest Nazarene; Thomas Sheets, MSU Billings; Matt Brink, MSU Billings.


Offense – Shayla Page, Seattle Pacific (D, 5-6, Fr., Redmond, WA - Eastlake) scored  the game-winning goal with 10 seconds remaining in overtime as the Falcons edge Saint Martin’s 2-1 Saturday at Interbay Stadium to avoid their third consecutive 1-1 draw and earn the Red Lion Offensive Player of the Week honors. Page has scored goals in three of SPU’s last four games, including the first goal in a 2-1 win against Western Washington on Sept. 19 and their lone goal in Thursday’s 1-1 draw with Western Oregon. Defense – Ashton Griffen, Western Washington (M, 5-4, Jr., Duvall, WA – Cedarcrest) had a pair of assists and also contributed to two more home shutouts  while playing right back and center mid  to earn Red Lion Defensive Player of the Week honors.  The Vikings have outscored their opponents 17-0 in five home games this fall and have posted 11 consecutive home shutouts dating back to a 1-0 win over Central Washington on Sept. 17, 2011. “Ashton's work ethic and fitness level is fantastic,” WWU coach Travis Connell said.  “This past weekend she covered so much ground, tirelessly closing down the ball, dominating in the air and winning knockdowns. Her commitment to the team was inspiring.”  Honorable Mention – Joana Houplin, Western Washington; Marina Austin, Western Oregon; Hillary Lutz, Western Oregon; Jaucelyn Richter, MSU Billings; Whitney Siler, MSU Billings.


Men –  Jesse Baggenstos, Northwest Nazarene (Sr., Renton, WA – Kentridge) was the GNAC’s top finisher in the Willamette Charles Bowles Invitational at Salem placing 14th in a 8,000-meter time of 25:29.02 to earn Red Lion Athlete of the Week honors.  Baggenstos finished exactly one minute after race winner Lars Erik Malde of the University of Portland. Women –  Whitney Mickelsen, Montana State Billings (Sr., Aurora, Utah) finished second in the non-Division I division and 18th overall in the University of Colorado Rocky Mountain Shootout at Boulder, Colo.  The Red Lion Athlete of the Week award winner covered the 6,000-meter course in a time of 22:24 to lead the Yellowjackets to the team title in the non-Division I  division.  Honorable Mention – Clint Choquette, MSU Billings; Will Harrison, Seattle Pacific; Katie Morris, Seattle Pacific.


Mark Strickland (So., Mukilteo, WA – Kamiak) fired a seven-under par 209 total   to lead the Viking men to the team title in the Western Washington Invitational at the Bellingham Golf and Country Club and earn Red Lion Golfer of the Week honors. Strickland shot a five-under par 67 – the best round of the tournament – in Monday’s opening round, then followed that up with rounds of 73 and 69 to finish one shot ahead of Josh Zhang of British Columbia and Mark Geddes of Grand Canyon.  Honorable Mention – Eric Gravbrot, MSU Billings.


Anna Bourland, Montana State Billings (5-3, So., Bainbridge, WA)  tied with teammate Kristen Hansen (Fr., Spokane, WA – Mead) for 10th place in the Grand Canyon Fall Invitational Monday and Tuesday in earning Red Lion Golfer of the Week honors. Both players had 36-hole totals of 151.  Bourland opened with a 76, then carded a 75.  Hansen had a 78 on Monday and a 73 on Tuesday.  Honorable Mention – Katie Fish, Montana State Billings.