Mason Larson earns GPAC Defensive Player of the Year, while Koln Oppold makes honor team for DWU men

Both seniors were recognized when the GPAC postseason awards were announced Wednesday.

Dakota Wesleyan University's Mason Larson (15) blocks the shot attempt of University of Jamestown's Brady Birch during a Great Plains Athletic Conference game on Wednesday, February 2, 2022 at the Corn Palace.
Mitchell Republic file photo

SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Dakota Wesleyan men's basketball's Mason Larson earned recognition as the Great Plains Athletic Conference's Defensive Player of the Year for his efforts during his final season in blue and white.

The 6-foot-7 senior forward led the Tigers at 1.3 blocks per and grabbed 5.3 rebounds with 10.1 points and 2.1 assists per game this season. Larson was also one of two Tigers named as honorable mention selections, joining fellow senior forward Jeffrey Schuch, who posted 11 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game.

A third DWU senior forward, Koln Oppold, was the lone Tiger named to either of the 10-man all-conference teams. Oppold was a first-team honoree after posting per-game averages of 14.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 3.6 assists, all team-highs for DWU, which finished the season with a record of 13-16 after falling in the GPAC semifinals.

Jamestown's Mason Walters took home GPAC Player of the Year honors, while Dordt's Luke Rankin was named Freshman of the Year. Briar Cliff's Mark Svagera was recognized as the conference's Coach of the Year.

2021-22 GPAC Men’s Basketball All-Conference Teams


  • GPAC Player of the Year: Mason Walters, Jamestown
  • GPAC Defensive Player of the Year: Mason Larson, Dakota Wesleyan
  • GPAC Freshman of the Year: Luke Rankin, Dordt
  • GPAC Coach of the Year: Mark Svagera, Briar Cliff

First Team (10 Members, Listed Alphabetically by Last Name — Name School Height Year Position Hometown)
Bryce Coppock Dordt 5-11 Sophomore G Hawarden, Iowa
Josiah Gardiner Doane 6-8 Sophomore F Milford, Nebraska
Trent Hilbrands Northwestern 6-0 Senior G Remsen, Iowa
Zach Imig Morningside 6-3 Senior G Gretna, Nebraska
Carter Kent Concordia 6-2 Junior G Crete, Nebraska
Jaden Kleinhesselink Briar Cliff 6-2 Senior G Sheldon, Iowa
Koln Oppold Dakota Wesleyan 6-4 Senior F Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Gage Smith Concordia 6-6 Junior F Elizabeth, Colorado
Alex Van Kalsbeek Northwestern 6-6 Sophomore F Orange City, Iowa
Mason Walters Jamestown 6-9 Junior F Jamestown, North Dakota

Second Team
Cade Bleeker Dordt 6-5 Junior F Sioux Center, Iowa
Kyle Boerhave Briar Cliff 6-6 Senior F Ashton, Iowa
Will Cordes Jamestown 5-11 Sophomore G Shakopee, Minnesota
Karson Gansebom Hastings 6-2 Junior G Bennington, Nebraska
Tyrell Harper Mount Marty 6-6 Senior F Sanford, Florida
Marc Kjos Jamestown 5-10 Junior G Lake City, Minnesota
Laurence Merritt Midland 5-10 Senior G Chicago, Illinois
Alec Oberhauser Doane 6-8 Senior F Parkersburg, Iowa
Bo Sandquist Midland 6-5 Senior G Johnston, Iowa
Aidan Vanderloo Morningside 6-1 Sophomore G Sioux City, Iowa
Justin Wiersema Concordia 6-3 Junior G Loveland, Colorado
Quinn Vesey Briar Cliff 6-1 Junior G Indianola, Iowa

Honorable Mention
Briar Cliff: Connor Groves, Quinten Vasa
Concordia: Noah Schutte, A.J. Watson
Dakota Wesleyan: Mason Larson, Jeffrey Schuch
Doane: Anthony Laravie, Brady Timm
Dordt: Luke Rankin, Jacob Vis, Jackson Louscher
Hastings: Dashawn Walker
Jamestown: Cole Woodford, Devon Schultz
Midland: Ryan Larsen
Morningside: Trey Brown, Trey Powers
Mount Marty:
Northwestern: Matt Onken, Grant DeMeulenaere

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