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“Champions of Character” focus of final convocation

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The final two convocations of the school year recognized student achievements in academics and athletics at Bethel College.

The May 14 Champions of Character Convocation began with a photo recap of the year in sports at Bethel College.

In opening remarks, Diane Flickner, athletic director, called the event “an opportunity to celebrate, share memories and give honor for a job well done.” She also noted that it had been 29 years since the athletic awards event had been held during convocation.

Merle Schlabaugh, professor of German and the faculty representative in the athletic department, announced the academic awards.

Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC) Academic All-Conference Awards went to: Eric Regier, junior from Haysville, Matt Regier, senior from Whitewater, and Trey Ronnebaum, sophomore from Wichita, for men’s basketball; Holly Anthony, senior from Sterling, Samantha Askew, junior from Dodge City, Rachael Bachman, junior from Emporia, Hannah Blackburn, senior from Kingman, Jessica Muckenthaler, junior from Emporia, and Angela Wood, senior from Wichita, for women’s basketball; Ben Moore, senior from Green, and Kevin Leary, sophomore from North Newton, for men’s cross country; Natasha Esau, senior from Hutchinson, Pia Goedicke, senior from Bergheim, Germany, and Jackie Kamphaus, junior from Clay Center, for women’s cross country; Dana Daugharthy, senior from Iola, Kellen Goertzen, sophomore from Henderson, Neb., Garrett Hiebert, senior from Goessel, Matt Regier, Andy Schmidt, senior from Hesston, and Andrew Wiederholt, junior from Hartford, in football; Eric Regier for golf; Will Nagengast, junior from Lawrence, and Greg Shelly, senior from Lenexa, in men’s soccer; Patrici Dixon, senior from Fruita, Colo., Emily Kliewer, senior from Lenexa, Maya Kehr, senior from Goshen, Ind., Michelle Love, senior from Whitewater, Nakita Menefee, junior from Wichita, Kaylee Weichman, senior from Valley Center, Renicia Yoder, sophomore from Newton, and Louise Zurkee, junior from Andale, in women’s soccer; Matt Hershberger, senior from Clay Center, and Ben Moore in men’s tennis; Rachael Bachman, Maya Kehr and Katie Malotte, sophomore from Marysville, in women’s tennis; Natasha Esau, Garrett Hiebert, Ben Histand, senior from North Newton, Jackie Kamphaus, Tiffany Kaufman, sophomore from Moundridge, Kevin Leary, Kristen Lohaus, sophomore from Noble, Okla., Alyssa Schrag, sophomore from Moundridge, and Dorothy Voth, junior from Hesston, in track and field; and Whitney Hiebner, senior from Hampton, Neb., Billye Jerde, senior from Newton, Kristen Lohaus, Alyssa Schrag, Melissa Volk, junior from Newton, Christy Weems, senior from Topeka, and Addison Wolf, junior from Moundridge, in volleyball.

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Scholar-Athlete Awards went to: Matt Regier in men’s basketball; Holly Anthony, Rachael Bachman, Jessica Muckenthaler and Angela Wood in women’s basketball; Natasha Esau in women’s cross country; Dana Daugharthy, Garrett Hiebert, Matt Regier, Andy Schmidt and Andrew Wiederholt in football; Greg Shelly in men’s soccer; Emily Kliewer and Kaylee Wiechman in women’s soccer; Matt Hershberger in men’s tennis; Rachael Bachman and Maya Kehr in women’s tennis; and Natasha Esau, Garrett Hiebert and Daniel Klaassen, junior from Whitewater, in track and field.

Champions of Character Leader Award winners were Natasha Esau, Matt Hershberger, Maya Kehr, Emily Kliewer, Ben Moore, Trey Ronnebaum, Alyssa Schrag, Greg Shelly, Dakota Sorenson, senior from Crestone, Colo., Cameron Voth, junior from Goessel, Addison Wolf and Angela Wood.

Doug Maury, the director of Bethel College’s Athletic Training Education Program, and Jessica Hunter, Bethel head athletic trainer, presented Kansas Athletic Trainers Society (KATS) Awards for academic excellence to Emily Kliewer and Cassie Preston, senior from Valley Center.

Chad Schilling, sports information director and head volleyball coach, along with the other coaches presented the “B” (for Bethel) letter to two-year letter winners with special recognition for senior two-year letter winners.

Two-year letter winners were, in men’s basketball, Trey Ronnebaum and John Watson, sophomore from San Antonio, Texas; in women’s basketball, Jordyn Blanson, sophomore from Oklahoma City, and Jessica Muckenthaler; in men’s cross country, Kevin Leary and Zach Metzler, sophomore from Newton; in women’s cross country, Jackie Kamphaus; in football, Jarret Abell, junior from Phillipsburg, Chris Bloss, junior from Wichita, Kayd Byers, sophomore from Wichita, Matt Gilmour, sophomore from Wichita, Kellen Goertzen, Garrett Hiebert and Lee Voth-Gaeddert, sophomore from Hesston; in golf, Jordan Esau, sophomore from Hutchinson, Eric Regier and John Reimer, sophomore from Hesston; in men’s soccer, Michael Linscheid, junior from Reedley, Calif., and Christian Loeffler, junior from North Newton; in women’s soccer, Orrie Dean, sophomore from Flagstaff, Ariz., Angelica Kaegi, junior from McKinney, Texas, Renicia Yoder and Louise Zurkee; in women’s tennis, Katie Malotte; and in track and field, Jordyn Blanson, Jackie Kamphaus, Kevin Leary, Kristen Lohaus, Andrew McNary, junior from Potwin, Zach Metzler, Alyssa Schrag, Caleb Stephens, junior from Lawrence, Grady Stultz, sophomore from Goessel, and Dorothy Voth.

Seniors who were two year-letter winners were Aaron Gingerich, Kalona, Iowa (men’s basketball); Parker Bugosh, Castro Valley, Calif., Darin Derstein, Ford, Ben Mosier and David Mueller, Halstead (football); Greg Shelly (men’s soccer); Christian Loganbill, Wichita, and Shawn Sullivan, Hutchinson (men’s tennis); and Darin Derstein and Ben Santos, Smithville, Mo. (track and field).

Four-year letter winners were seniors Hannah Blackburn (women’s basketball); Derek Benson, Chris Cornejo, David Daugharthy, Iola, Reed Hammond, Hesston, Joel Maple, Umatilla, Fla., James McCartney, Hesston, Darron Morgan, Oklahoma City, Jesse Mueller, Halstead, and Andy Schmidt (football); Jordan Bartel, Lakewood, Colo. (golf); Aaron Hull, Wichita (men’s soccer); Rosie Hamman-Hartkop, Lima, Ohio, Emily Kliewer, Michelle Love and Kaylee Weichman (women’s soccer); Sam Gaeddert, Hutchinson, and Matt Hershberger (men’s tennis); Maya Kehr (women’s tennis); and Natasha Esau, David Daugharthy, Jesse Mueller and Dakota Sorenson (track and field).

Schilling also announced KCAC and NAIA honors for the year, as follows:

Women’s Basketball, KCAC All-Conference, First Team – Hannah Blackburn

Honorable Mention – Angela Wood

Women’s Cross Country, KCAC All-Conference, Honorable Mention – Natasha Esau

Football, KCAC All-Conference, 1st Team – James McCartney, defense

2nd Team – Reed Hammond and Joel Maple, defense; Jarret Abell, Albino Quinones, senior from San Antonio Texas, and Lee Voth-Gaeddert, offense

Honorable Mention – Caleb Stephens, defense; Lance Francis, senior from Port Charlotte, Fla., Jeremy Newhouse, senior from Newton, and Matt Regier, offense; Reed Hammond, specialty

Golf, KCAC All-Conference – Zach Frey, junior from Goessel

Men’s Soccer, KCAC All-Conference, Honorable Mention – Aaron Hull and Marcus Maust, senior from Bay Port, Mich.

Women’s Soccer, KCAC All-Conference, 2nd Team – Michelle Love and Megan Schrock, junior from Wellman, Iowa

Honorable Mention – Kaylee Weichman and Kelsie Wilson, junior from Dodge City

Men’s Tennis, KCAC All-Conference, 1st Team – Sam Gaeddert

2nd Team – Matt Hershberger

Women’s Tennis, KCAC All-Conference, 1st Team – Maya Kehr, Katie Malotte and Miranda Weaver, freshman from Hesston

2nd Team – Rachael Bachman and Allison Kaster, junior from Wichita

Men’s Track and Field, All-KCAC – David Daugharthy, Garrett Hiebert, Andrew McNary, Ben Santos, Dakota Sorenson and Caleb Stephens

Honorable Mention – Darin Derstein, Ben Histand, Kevin Leary, Zach Metzler, David Mueller, Jesse Mueller and Grady Stultz

Women’s Track and Field, All-KCAC – Jordyn Blanson, Kristen Lohaus and Dorothy Voth

Honorable Mention – Natasha Esau, Kara Gerber, freshman from Conway Springs, Jackie Kamphaus, Tiffany Kaufman and Alyssa Schrag

Volleyball, KCAC All-Conference, 1st Team – Christy Weems

2nd Team – Bethany Thiesen, junior from Moundridge, and Addison Wolf

Honorable Mention – Whitney Hiebner

During their respective seasons, KCAC Player of the Week awards went to Addison Wolf twice (volleyball, defense), Angela Wood (women’s basketball), Zach Frey (golf), Maya Kehr (women’s tennis) and Katie Malotte (women’s tennis).

James McCartney was KCAC Player of the Year in Football-Defense and Katie Malotte was KCAC Player of the Year in Women’s Tennis. Also in women’s tennis, Miranda Weaver received the KCAC Sportsmanship Award.

NAIA All-American honors went to McCartney (1st Team Defense) and to Hannah Blackburn (Honorable Mention, women’s basketball). Tennis and track and field All-American winners will be announced at a later date.

The final presentations of the Champions of Character convocation were three awards honoring Bethel coaches and administrators.

Football coach Travis Graber and women’s basketball coach Mark Fox presented the 2010 George Rogers Outstanding Athlete of the Year Award to James McCartney and Hannah Blackburn, respectively. The award, instituted in 1998, is named for George Rogers III of Newton, an athlete in his Bethel student days who from 1969-98 served variously as a coach, faculty member, athletic director and dean of students at Bethel.

Diane Flickner announced the 2010 Douglas A. Penner Champions of Character Scholarship recipients, Garrett Hiebert and Cameron Voth. Instituted in 2002, the award honors former Bethel athlete, faculty member and president (1997-2002) Doug Penner, Topeka.

Finally, Flickner presented a Bethel College letter jacket to Merle Schlabaugh, winner of the 2010 Gerry Sieber Service Award. Sieber coached men’s soccer at Bethel for 13 years and, during that time, started the women’s soccer program. After his retirement from coaching soccer, Sieber re-started the cross country program at Bethel and is now developing a new cross country program at Hesston College.

Bethel College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. Bethel is known for its academic excellence and was the only Kansas private college to be ranked in’s listing of “America’s Best Colleges” for 2009 and one of only two Kansas colleges profiled in Colleges of Distinction 2009-10. For more information, see the Bethel Web site at

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