Campus News

Bethel Athletic Department Hosts Helm Awards

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MISHAWAKA—With so much uncertainty entering the 2020-21 academic and athletic year due to COVID-19, the Bethel Athletic Department made it a goal to try and make it through the season. Not only did the Athletic Department make it through their 2020-21 seasons, but they did it in style. They claimed four runner-up finishes in the NCCAA National Championships for men’s and women’s cross country, women’s golf and men’s soccer. They also brought home three national championships: two individual and one team. The women’s volleyball team brought home the NCCAA National Title, while Emma Mott and Thomas Jackson both brought home individual titles for Bethel. So, after so many trials and tribulations for Bethel University, Athletic Director Tony Natali wanted to put on an awards ceremony to show the department’s appreciation for their athletes. 

“I told our staff that I had wanted to celebrate our athletes,” Natali said. “We wanted to celebrate having all of our athletes in one place because we haven’t been able to do that this year. We also wanted to celebrate making it through this period of COVID, we wanted to celebrate the successes that we’ve had this season, and we wanted to celebrate the identity that we’ve grown in the athletic department, and that’s a Christ-centered department.” 

Not only did they want to honor the athletic accomplishments of their athletes, but their academic ones as well. They handed out two team scholar awards, one to the best women’s team and one to the best men’s team. The best men’s team GPA went to the men’s golf team who had a 3.73 GPA as a team, and the best women’s team GPA went to the women’s tennis team who had a 3.53 GPA as a team. Along with team scholar awards, they also handed out awards to the best performing individuals on each team to form an all-academic team.  

Pilots All-Academic Team  

Baseball: Colby Sidenbender 

Men’s Basketball: Filip Segota 

Women’s Basketball: Maggie Deboy and Maddie Hess 

Men’s Bowling: Reed Ellis 

Women’s Bowling: Ashleigh Neier 

Competitive Cheer: Faith Livensparger 

Men’s Cross Country: Josiah Railton 

Women’s Cross Country: Emma Mott 

Esports: Corey Bridgeman and Brianna Densmore 

Men’s Golf: Logan Marshall 

Women’s Golf: Brooke Thomas 

Men’s Soccer: Matheus Santiago 

Women’s Soccer: Hannah Mihut 

Softball: Sydney Anderson 

Men’s Swimming: Jakob Forsythe 

Women’s Swimming: Emma McClelland 

Men’s Tennis: Evan Roth 

Women’s Tennis: Emili Runestad 

Men’s Track & Field: Jacob Ropp 

Women’s Track & Field: Cailyn Pentecost 

Women’s Volleyball: Megan Hosinski 

Women’s Lacrosse: Marissa Berg 

Along with announcing the academic awards for the athletes, they also announced the various national awards that the athletes accumulated over the course of the season. 

NAIA All-Americans 

Men’s Basketball: TreVion Crews 

Men’s Indoor Track & Field: Thomas Jackson 

Men’s Swimming: Logan Berndt, Caleb Berrong, Dylan Delong, Ean Erling 

Women’s Indoor Track & Field: Emma Mott, Megan Cooper, Kayla Kunkel, Haley Wimmer 

Women’s Swimming: Abigail Barnes, Sarah Hyska, Vivienne Kunkler, Emma McClelland, Paula Ronda Bou, Elisabeth Wolfe 

NCCAA All-Americans 

Men’s Basketball: TreVion Crews 

Men’s Cross Country: Trevor Miller, Jacob Ropp, Jordan Shoemaker 

Women’s Cross Country: Emma Mott, Megan Cooper 

Women’s Golf: Maria Pardo Victori, Jessica Shurety, Brooke Thomas 

NCCAA Players/Coaches of the Year 

Emma Mott: NCCAA Women’s Cross Country Ray Bullock Award 

Isabelle North: NCCAA Women’s Volleyball Tournament Most Outstanding Player 

TreVion Crews: NCCAA Men’s Basketball National and North Central Region Player of the Year 

Brooke Thomas: NCCAA Women’s Golf North Central Region Player of the Year 

Katie Weiss: NCCAA Women’s Volleyball National Coach of the Year 

Geandra Almeida: NCCAA Women’s Golf North Central Region Coach of the Year 

Steve Drabyn: NCCAA Men’s Basketball North Central Region Coach of the Year 

USTFCCCAA Players of the Year 

Emma Mott: USTFCCCAA Great Lakes Region Women’s Indoor Track Athlete of the Year 

Thomas Jackson: USTFCCCAA Great Lakes Region Men’s Indoor Field Athlete of the Year 

After they announced the academic and athletic awards for the athletes they went into the superlative awards for the athletes. Those awards included Student Worker of the Year, the Ron Paulsen Memorial Grant recipients, the Dave Slater Spirit Award, Reserves Player of the Year, Play of the Year, Breakthrough Athlete of the Year, Rookie of the Year, and Player of the Year.  

Student Worker of the Year 

Nominees: Nick Sherk – Athletic Department Intern, Jessica Shurety – Facilities and Game staff and Ben Wilt - Athletic Department Intern 

Winner: Ben Wilt – Athletic Department Intern 

Ron Paulsen Memorial Grant Recipients 

Men’s Nominees: Willian dos Santos – Men's Soccer, Trevor Miller – Men's Cross Country, and Evan Roth – Men's Tennis 

Winner: Willian dos Santos – Men's Soccer 

Women’s Nominees: Emma Mott – Women's Cross Country, Grace Haley – Women's Tennis, Kelsey Brickner – Women's Basketball, and Mattie Reese – Softball 

Winner: Emma Mott – Women's Cross Country 

Dave Slater University Spirit Award 

Men’s Nominees: Luke Hillegonds – Men's Golf, Andrew Miranda – Baseball, and Sebastian Alonso – Men's Track & Field 

Winner: Sebastian Alonso – Men's Track & Field 

Women’s Nominees: Gabrielle Reinhoehl – Competitive Cheer, Paige Sextella – Women's Bowling and Women’s Golf, and Grace Beck - Women's Soccer 

Winner: Grace Beck – Women's Soccer 

Reserves Player of the Year 

Men’s Nominees: Seth Shetler – Men's Basketball and Jacob Imhoff – Men's Soccer 

Winner: Jacob Imhoff – Men's Soccer 

Women’s Nominees: Paige Sextella – Women's Golf, Haley Berger – Women's Volleyball, Halle Shipp – Women's Basketball, and Shaelyn Mulder – Softball 

Winner: Halle Shipp – Women's Basketball 

Play of the Year 

Men’s Nominees: Jared DeHart – Men's Basketball and Eli MacDonald – Baseball 

Winner: Jared DeHart – Men's Basketball 

Women’s Nominees: Isabelle North – Volleyball, Emma Mott – Women's Cross Country, and Nyla Asad – Women's Basketball 

Winner: Isabelle North – Volleyball  

Breakthrough Athlete of the Year 

Men’s Nominees: Nathan Aerts – Men's Basketball, Myles Moser – Men's Bowling, and Elisha Fleming – Men's Track & Field 

Winner: Nathan Aerts – Men's Basketball 

Women’s Nominees: Megan Cooper – Women's Cross Country, Haley Ragonesi – Softball, and Sarah Konecny – Women's Lacrosse 

Winner: Megan Cooper – Women's Cross Country 

Rookie of the Year 

Men’s Nominees: Edward Mitchell – Rocket League, Caleb Berrong – Men's Swimming & Diving, and Kurtis Davis – Men's Tennis 

Winner: Caleb Berrong – Men's Swimming & Diving 

Women’s Nominees: Maddy Payne – Women's Volleyball, Paula Ronda Bou – Women's Swimming & Diving, and Maria Pardo Victori – Women's Golf 

Winner: Maddy Payne – Women's Volleyball 

Player of the Year 

Men’s Nominees: TreVion Crews – Men's Basketball, Thomas Jackson – Men's Track & Field, and Jose Barquin – Men's Soccer 

Winner: Thomas Jackson – Men's Track & Field 

Women’s Nominees: Emma Mott – Women's Cross Country and Women’s Track & Field, Isabelle North – Women's Volleyball, and Grace Haley – Women's Tennis 

Winner: Emma Mott – Women's Cross Country and Women’s Track & Field 

“I think we’ve learned some things since it’s the first time we’ve held something like this,” Natali said. “Next year we hope to have a dinner to go with the ceremony. We also want to make this an annual event. We wanted to make it happen last year, but we couldn’t. This is something that we want to celebrate yearly. We want to celebrate not only the achievements that our athletic teams accomplish, but also celebrate Christ and Him being at the center of all that we do.” 

For more information on Bethel University athletics visit

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