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Voss earns first team all-GPAC honors

All year long, teams in the Great Plains Athletic Conference game planned to stop Dakota Wesleyan University forward Jalen Voss. No method or theory of slowing down the big man inside worked as the junior averaged 20.9 points and 7.4 rebounds per game, helping the Tigers to an 18-14 record and a semifinals appearance in the GPAC tournament.

Wednesday, Voss added another feather in his cap as he was selected to the all-GPAC first team for the first time in his career.

Dordt’s Kyle Lindbergh took home the conference player of the year award, while Dordt’s Dalton Franken was selected the freshman of the year.

“I am pretty excited,” Voss said. “But I am more excited that we had four guys on our team that got honored all-GPAC. That just shows how well our season went. I wasn’t sure how to handle double teams, but coach Wilber really helped me with how to protect the ball and improve my scoring.”

As a sophomore in 2012, Voss earned honorable mention all-conference nods after averaging 14.2 points and 9.4 rebounds per game.

Voss’ dominance in the paint opened up a wealth of shot opportunities for guards Trae Bergh, Jade Miller and Kris Menning. Bergh, who averaged 16.6 points per game and ranked third in 3-pointers made per game with 3.48, was selected to the all-GPAC second team. Menning, a Corsica native, earned honorable mention honors along with transfer point guard and Mitchell native Tate Martin. Menning averaged 16.1 points per game, while Martin led the GPAC in assists with 185.

“Jalen is a very good basketball player,” first-year DWU men’s basketball coach Matt Wilber said. “He kept evolving throughout the season to the defenses that he would see. He made it difficult for teams to key on him because he started hitting shots from the perimeter.

“He used his teammates, and they were very good in getting him the basketball. I think our guys really complemented each other well.”

Wilber also said Miller, a former Mitchell Kernel, and Corsica native Luke Bamberg had good seasons despite not earning all-conference honors.

Four DWU women earn all-GPAC honors

Junior guard Celeste Beck, senior guard Amanda Hart and junior forward Katie Johnson each earned second-team all-GPAC honors, it was announced Wednesday. No Wesleyan women earned first-team honors, but all three players were integral in the Tigers’ second straight season with double-digit wins in conference play.

Hart, an Alexandria native, led Wesleyan in scoring with 13.1 points per game, followed by Beck, who tallied 12.5 points per game and Johnson, who scored 11.7 points and grabbed 6.4 rebounds per game.

Kim Johnson earned honorable mention all-conference honors for the Tigers, who finished 18-13 overall this season. The senior forward averaged 10.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, after averaging 18.5 points per game last season and earning second-team All-American honors.

“All four contributed to our team,” DWU women’s basketball coach Jason Christensen said. “We don’t have a standout kid or a go-to player. We were more of a team this year. Any given night, one of them could go off for 20 points, and that was kind of the luxury of our team this year.”

Tabor native and Mount Marty College basketball player Raquel Sutera was also voted second-team all-GPAC, while Parkton graduate and Mount Marty guard Logan Wagner was selected honorable mention all-GPAC.