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Locally: Post Falls graduate Kelcie Hedge earns women’s soccer All-American honors

Kelcie Hedge works out at Rockwood’s Sports Performance center on Oct. 3, 2013, in Spokane. (Tyler Tjomsland / The Spokesman-Review)
Kelcie Hedge works out at Rockwood’s Sports Performance center on Oct. 3, 2013, in Spokane. (Tyler Tjomsland / The Spokesman-Review)
From staff and news services

The awards keep coming for Kelcie Hedge.

The Santa Clara redshirt junior from Post Falls, the West Coast Conference Player of the Year, was named an NCAA Division I women’s soccer All-American by the United Soccer Coaches.

That followed closely the announcement that Hedge was a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy, considered the most coveted individual honor in NCAA Division I soccer, after she was named first-team All-West Region by the United Soccer Coaches on top of her WCC awards, first-team All-WCC and player of the year.

Add to that WCC All-Academic honorable mention, with a 3.39 grade-point average in communication, and you have an armful of awards.

Hedge helped lead the Broncos to their most wins (17) since 2005 and their most regular-season (16) and nonconference (nine) wins since 2001. Her seven goals tied for second on the team. She added two assists and started all but one game. During conference play, she led the team with six goals, scoring all in a span of five matches.

“Kelcie Hedge was an unbelievable force for us this year,” Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith said. “What I appreciated most about what she did was the behind-the-scenes things. Obviously, she could score goals, but she impacted the game off the ball, she impacted the game defensively, and she impacted our culture in training every day.

“She’s absolutely a team-first kid that works her butt off and just had an incredible year for us. Without her, we don’t have the season we did and she is very deserving of being a semifinalist.”

Hedge is one of 15 women’s semifinalists, based on voting by NCAA Division I coaches, for the award provided by the Missouri Athletic Club that goes to a female and male player judged to be the best in the sport. Three semifinalists each will be named Friday. The trophies will be awarded Jan. 4.

Hedge, the 2013 Idaho Gatorade Player of the Year at Post Falls, started her collegiate career at Washington in 2015 and was named to the Pac-12 All-Freshman team after collecting four goals and three assists while starting all 21 games for the Huskies.

She redshirted in 2016 to play with the U.S. Women’s U-20 National team in the Women’s World Cup and transferred to Santa Clara in 2017, where she started 20 games for the Broncos, scoring one goal with two assists.

College scene

Community Colleges of Spokane’s undefeated run to the Northwest Athletic Conference volleyball championship has produced another honor for coach Jenni Rosselli-Hull.

The Sasquatch’s 14th-year head coach has been named one of two Two-Year College West Region Coaches of the Year by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.

The AVCA named co-coaches of the year in four regions. All are eligible to become the 2018 AVCA Two-Year Colleges National Coach of the Year.

Rosselli-Hull shared the West honor with James Cartisser of College of Southern Idaho. The Eagles went 31-2 and won the school’s 12th NJCAA national championship in his first season as head coach after eight as an assistant for his late wife.

In compiling a 40-0 record en route to winning CCS’ ninth conference championship, the Sasquatch dropped just 10 sets all season. They won the NWAC title match in straight sets and became the first school to put together an undefeated NWAC title season since 2008.

Rosselli-Hull earlier was named East Region and NWAC Coach of the Year.

• Western Washington senior libero Aubrey Stephens from Colville was named honorable mention on the American Volleyball Coaches Association Division II All-America team.

Stephens, honorable mention on the AVCA All-West Region team who ranks sixth in the West averaging 4.97 digs per set, joins her older sister, Western grad Joellee Buckner, who was an AVCA Division II All-American in 2017.

• Gonzaga sophomore outside hitter Sarah Penner was named honorable mention on the All-West Coast Conference volleyball team after she led the Bulldogs in kills (313), attacks and points for a second straight season, averaging 2.93 kills per set. She was on the WCC All-Freshman team a season ago.

Penner and three teammates were named WCC All-Academic honorable mention with GPAs of 3.20 or above. Jenna Kuehn (jr.) was on the All-Academic team a season ago, while Faith Smith (sr.) was honorable mention as a junior, too. It was the first academic honor for Penner and Chapin Gray (so.).

• Washington State senior outside hitters Taylor Mims and McKenna Woodford led four Cougars named to All-Pac-12 volleyball teams.

Mims, the offensive leader of the Cougars who passed 1,000 career kills this season, was named to the 18-player team for a second straight season after receiving honorable mention as a sophomore. Woodford, who had a team-high 398 kills, was honored by the Pac-12 for the first time since being named to the All-Freshman team in 2015.

Juniors Jocelyn Urias, a middle blocker, and setter Ashley Brown received honorable mention.

• Woodford was a first-team selection for a third straight season in leading six Cougars named to 2018 Pac-12 All-Academic teams in volleyball with GPAs of 3.0 or higher.

The other five received honorable mention – seniors Olivia Coale, Ella Lajos and Claire Martin, junior Alexis Dirige and sophomore Penny Tusa.

Alexis Dirige of Washington State was named the Pac-12 Volleyball Defensive Player of the Week following her performance in victories over Oregon State and Washington Nov. 19-25 that helped clinch a hosting spot as the No. 16 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

After contributing 11 digs and four assists in a three-game sweep of the Beavers, the junior defensive specialist/libero had 25 digs, a 1.000 reception percentage and six assists as the No. 20 Cougars overcame the 19th-ranked Huskies in five sets.

• Five players with area ties, led by Jenny Chavez of Eastern Washington and Taryn Miller of Montana, have been named to 2018 United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division I Women’s All-West Region teams.

After being selected to the third team as a sophomore and junior, Chavez, a senior midfielder, was named to the second team. Miller, a senior defender from Central Valley, repeated on the All-West third team.

Kelly Dopke, an Idaho senior defender, was named to the second team while her Vandals’ freshman teammate, forward Myah Merino, and Gonzaga senior defender Ariana Pumpelly were on the third team.

• Washington State junior forward Morgan Weaver and senior defender Maddy Haro were named to 2018 United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division I Women’s All-Pacific Region teams.

Weaver, the offensive leader of the Cougars who had a career-best 13 goals, was named to the first team after collecting third-team All-West Region honors as a sophomore. Haro earned her first all-region honor after finishing her final campaign with a program-record 15 assists.

• Former Central Valley teammates Kasey Ames and McKenna Stocker, now senior teammates at Concordia University in Portland, were named to the United Soccer Coaches Division II Women’s All-West Region third team. Ames in a midfielder, Stocker a defender

• Whitworth senior teammates Sydney Weiler, a defender from University High School and Community Colleges of Spokane, and midfielder Kelly Wucherer were named to the United Soccer Coaches Division III Women’s All-West Region third team.

• Nine Gonzaga women’s soccer players were named Academic All-West Coast Conference honorable mention with GPAs of 3.20 or higher. Senior Jodi Ulkekul collected the honor for a third straight year.

Earning their second straight honorable mention awards were juniors Madeline Gotta, India Jencks and Sophia Viviano. First-time recipients were Callie Best (sr., Lakeside-Nine Mile Falls), Maddie Cooley (jr.), Ariana Pumpelly (sr.), McKenna Ferrera (sr.) and Samantha Heilman (jr.).

• Gonzaga seniors Austin Giftopoulos and Jake Kempf were named to the West Coast Conference All-Academic team in men’s soccer and five Bulldogs earned honorable mention with GPAs of 3.20 or higher.

It was the third WCC academic honor for Giftopoulos after he was honorable mention the last two years. It’s the second honor for Kempf, who was honorable mention in 2016.

Quinn Liebmann (jr.), Ben Willis (sr.), Brady Henderson (so.), Nathaniel Tolton (jr.) and Garrett Wilson (jr.) were honorable mention. Willis earned his third straight honor, while Henderson and Tolton were honored for the second time.

• Washington State landed nine players on the Pac-12 women’s soccer All-Academic honorable mention list with GPAs of 3.0 or above, led by seniors Grace Hancock, Maddy Haro and Maegan O’Neill, who collected their third straight honorable mention awards.

Katie Jones (jr.) earned her second with Alysha Overland (sr., Moses Lake), Brianna Alger (so.), Elyse Bennett (so.), Sydney Pulver (so.) and Rachel Thompson (jr.) earning their first.

• Seniors Kyler Little from Lake City and Chandler Teigen from Asotin were named to the 10-member men’s first team and led a contingent of five men and six women from Washington State on 2018 Pac-12 Cross Country All-Academic teams with minimum GPAs of 3.0.

It was the third straight honor for both Little, who has a perfect 4.0 GPA, and Teigen. The men’s honorable mentions included Paul Ryan (sr., Logos of Moscow), honored for a third time; and Cameron Dean (jr., Mead) and Nathan Wadhwani (sr.), who collected their second.

Samantha King-Shaw (so.,) was a women’s second-team selection, joined by five WSU honorable mentions – Marie Gaudin (jr.), Melissa Hruska (jr.), Vallery Korir (sr.), Pia Richards (so.) and Desi Stringer (jr.).

• Idaho senior guard Mikayla Ferenz was named the Big Sky Conference co-Player of the Week in women’s basketball after she totaled 61 points in loses to Boise State and Long Beach State in the Beach Classic in Long Beach, California.

Ferenz, named to the all-tournament team, followed a 30-point game against Boise with a season-high 31 against Long Beach. She added 14 rebounds and was 9 for 9 on free throws during the weekend. It was the sixth weekly honor of her career and the first this season. She shared it with Hannah Friend of Sacramento State.

• Volleyball’s Kahle Elliott and football’s Mitch Fettig have been selected as the Eastern Washington athletic department November Scholar-Athletes of the Month.

Elliott, a senior outside hitter from Austin, Texas, has a 3.63 GPA in psychology and is vice president of EWU’s Student Athlete Advisory Council. In 19 sets in November, she hit .116 with 58 kills. She had three matches with double-digit kills and averaged 3.05 kills, 1.21 digs, .42 blocks and .21 aces per set.

Fettig, a senior safety and co-captain from Olympia, has a 3.76 GPA and will graduate in December with a degree in criminal justice. He is third team All-Big Sky Conference, but unfortunately will be lost for the playoffs with an injury. He started 43 of the 44 games he played in his career. His 282 tackles are six behind the school record for a defensive back.

• Twenty-two athletes with area ties were named to 2018 Cascade Collegiate Conference Fall Academic All-Conference teams with 12 of them also honored as Daktronics NAIA Scholar-Athletes.

Candidates for CCC honors must be at least a sophomore with a minimum GPA of 3.2 while those receiving NAIA awards are at least juniors with a minimum 3.5 GPA.

Honors by school (* denotes NAIA award):

Carroll – Terry Cox, sr., Ferris, men’s soccer; Konar Skindlov, jr., Coeur d’Alene HS, men’s soccer. College of Idaho - *Jocelyn Cook-Cox , sr., Lakeside-Nine Mile Falls/North Idaho College, women’s soccer. Corban – *McKenzie Wade, jr., Shadle Park, women’s cross country. Eastern Oregon – *Josee Bassett, jr., Coeur d’Alene HS, women’s soccer; *Sarah Carpenter, sr., University, volleyball; *Nan Kiebert, jr., Sandpoint, women’s soccer.

Evergreen – *Natalie Taylor, sr., Lake City, volleyball. Multnomah – Madison Schuh, sr., Northwest Christian HS/Community Colleges of Spokane, volleyball. Northwest Christian – Moriah Duenich, so., Deer Park, women’s cross country. Northwest – *Ashlyn Juul, sr., Mead, women’s soccer; Quinn Larson-Dhaenens, so., Northwest Christian HS, women’s cross country; *Rylee Rassier, sr., University, women’s soccer; *Noah Roberts, jr., Moses Lake Christian, men’s soccer; *Riley Sine, sr., Central Valley, men’s cross country; *Keann White, jr., Central Valley, volleyball.

Oregon Tech – Kelly Kylio, sr., Lakeside-Nine Miles Falls/CCS, men’s soccer. Providence – Andrew Davey, so., Gonzaga Prep, men’s soccer. Rocky – Jessica Kloepfer, sr., Lewiston, women’s soccer. Southern Oregon – Daniel McDevitt, so., Lakeland of Rathdrum, men’s soccer. Walla Walla – *Kandice Gage, sr., Livingstone Adventist Academy (Lewiston), women’s cross country; Alexa Johnson, so., Coeur d’Alene HS, women’s cross country.


Dan Stewart, an official for 39 years who has participated in numerous WIAA playoff games, received the Inland Empire Football Officials Association’s most prestigious honor, the Larry Becker-Chic Sale Distinguished Service Award, at the association’s annual banquet.

The award recognizes an IEFOA member for service to football and officiating over a lengthy period in a manner exemplary of the highest standards of the vocation. Stewart has become one of IEFOA’s top “white hats” (referees), has served in every board position and has led many training sessions and association committees.

Other IEFOA award winners: Ron Schafer, Official of the Year; Greg Meager, Rookie of the Year (second-year official); and Ron Carpenter, Apprentice of the Year (first-year official).

• Leading IEFOA in 2019 will be newly elected president Dennis Williams and vice president Joel Murphy. Tim Davis becomes the past president. John Ehrbar and Jared Frank continue on the board and will be joined by newly elected board member Tyler Zyph.

• Northwest Christian High School from the Northeast 2B League is the 2018 recipient of the IEFOA’s annual Sportsmanship Award in recognition of outstanding sportsmanship exhibited by the team in 2018.

The Crusaders and coach Brian Gardner were presented with the award during a school assembly last week.

Since 2005, the IEFOA has sought to promote sportsmanship in school and youth football. Officials recommend teams based on sportsmanship observed while working games. There were 12 nominations this season, and all received a certificate recognizing the sportsmanship behind the nomination. Tom Reser chairs the IEFOA sportsmanship committee.

Letters of intent

Gonzaga women’s cross country and track – Brittney Hansen, distances, Meridian, Idaho.

WSU men’s golf – Pono Yanagi, Hilo, Hawaii.


Spokane Junior Rifle Club Gold won the team title and its four members had top-six finishes at the 2018 Washington State Civilian Marksmanship Program Championship Nov. 17-18.

Taylor Christian, 16, Spokane Valley Tech, finished third in the field of 48 with teammates Cassidy Wilson, 18, home schooled, fourth; Mason Maystrovich, 17, Northwest Christian, fifth; and Zachary Pearsall, 17, home schooled, sixth. Christian shot 583 out of a maximum 600.

Just four points separated them in the three-position air rifle match in which two targets were shot at each position from a distance of 33 feet. Gold shot 2,324 out of a maximum 2,400.


Ray Serrano from Moses Lake, a former member of U12-U14 Spokane Shadow teams who now plays for Seattle Sounders FC and lives in Graham, Washington, has been named by the United Soccer Coaches to its Youth Boys All-America and All-West Region teams.


Longtime referee Rusty Wellman became the seventh member of the Spokane Area Volleyball Referees Association Hall of Fame, inducted at the organization’s annual banquet Nov. 19.

He has officiated volleyball for 34 years, all but five assigned by the Spokane board. He officiated in one NCAA Tournament, several NWAC championships and WIAA state tournaments. He is also a longtime advanced trainer of officials in Spokane.

Juli Argotow-Jones was voted by her SAVRA peers as Referee of the Year. She served as line judge for the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament in Pullman.

Other 2018 SAVRA award winners: Dale Goodwin, Partner of the Year; Alan Hirayama, Contributor of the Year; Devin Darrough, Line Judge of the Year; Jason Gonwick, Most Improved and Best Third-Year Official; Jeff Davis, Best Second-Year Official; and Tyler Martindale, Rookie of the Year.

• SAVRA officers for 2019 are Keith Ward, president; Ben Goodwin, vice president; Patty Kells, past president; Jones, Brent Radford, Linda Kildew and Darrough, members-at-large.

Debbie Spray, Dale Goodwin and Hirayama are advanced trainers/rating committee; Lisa Paull, Margie Ray and Wellman, appeals committee; Barb Twohig, basic trainer; Phil Robinson, treasurer; Bob Francis, assigner; and Hirayama, assistant assigner.

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