MARQUETTE, Mich. — During the 2015-16 season, many Wildcats had memorable individual performances.
School records were broken. Games were won in the final seconds. Individual titles were captured.
For the first time, Northern Michigan will give a “Performance of the Year” award to one student-athlete based on a social media vote.
Fourteen Wildcats, one from each team, are up for consideration for the inaugural award. Fans can vote for their favorite on Northern Michigan Athletics’ Facebook page by liking their photograph in the post on the award.
The winner will be announced at the annual Northern Michigan University Student-Athlete Awards Sunday, April 17. Voting concludes Wednesday, April 13 at noon.
Sept. 20, 2015 at the GLIAC North Invitational | Men’s Golf
Eliasson set a school record with his first-round 66 at his second collegiate invitational. He was one of only four golfers to break par that day, and his score was the lowest posted during any round at the GLIAC North Invitational. Eliasson ultimately finished second in a field of more than 70, shooting a 139 (63-73).
Oct. 3-4, 2015 at the Ashland University Invitational | Women’s Golf
Guthrie secured a top-10 finish, shooting a two-round 162 (78-84) to finish tied for 10th in a field of 73. Her first-round 78 is the second-best score posted by a Wildcat women’s golfer during the team’s inaugural season to date.
Oct. 31, 2015 against Michigan Tech | Women’s Soccer
Milam deflected a corner kick into the net in the 69th minute of play to lift the women’s soccer team to a 2-1 win over the Huskies on senior day. With the victory, the Wildcats clinched the fifth seed in the GLIAC Women's Soccer Tournament. It was the sophomore defender’s first collegiate goal.
Oct. 31, 2015 against Ferris State | Volleyball
Whitehead led the volleyball team to a five-set upset of No. 1 Ferris State on senior day with a career-best 26 kills, including four in the decisive fifth set. She also recorded a hitting percentage of .429 and three blocks. The Bulldogs entered the match 23-1 and an unbeaten 12-0 in GLIAC action.
Oct. 31, 2015 at Walsh | Football
Brown tossed touchdowns 20, 21, 22 and 23 against the Cavaliers, breaking Northern Michigan’s single-season record, set by Matt Hoard in 1996. He threw for 299 passing yards as the Wildcats toppled Walsh under the lights, 35-17. Brown finished the season with 30 touchdowns and a school record 3,123 passing yards.
Nov. 7, 2015 at the NCAA Midwestern Regional | Cross Country
Burmeister paced the Wildcats with a 14th-place finish as they qualified for their first NCAA Cross Country National Championship since 2005 by claiming fourth at their regional meet. She posted Northern Michigan’s fastest 6K time of the season, clocking in at 21:28.776.
Dec. 4, 2015 at Alabama-Huntsville | Hockey
With 17 seconds left on the clock, Shine capped his first career hat trick with a shorthanded penalty shot strike to lift the hockey team to a 4-3 comeback victory over the Chargers. It was one of only three hat tricks posted in WCHA play during the 2015-16 campaign. Shine went on to lead the WCHA in goals (6), points (8) and shots (28) in December en route to capturing his first Player of the Month award.
Jan. 3, 2016 at the U.S. Skiing Championships | Men’s Nordic Skiing
Martin placed third overall, and second among American skiers, in the 15K classic. He completed the course in 40:47.0 and was one of only two collegiate athletes to finish in the top 20 in a field of almost 200. Martin ultimately earned a spot on America’s World U-23 Championship team based on his performance at the U.S. Skiing Championships. It was the Nordic skiing teams’ first event of the season, as their four December events were canceled because of limited snowfall.
Jan. 21, 2016 against Saginaw Valley State | Men’s Basketball
Echols scored 31 points, the most by a Wildcat this season, in the men’s basketball team’s 83-79 loss to GLIAC frontrunner Saginaw Valley State. The freshman went 10 of 16 from the field and 6 of 9 from beyond the three-point arc. He was the first Wildcat since 2010 to reach the 30-point plateau.
Feb. 1, 2016 against Michigan Tech | Women’s Basketball
Gaspervich hit a last-second layup to vault the women's basketball team past the GLIAC North leading Huskies, 71-69. She recorded a team-high 21 points on 9 for 13 shooting and also dished out five assists. The performance kicked off a stretch where she hit the 20-point plateau four times in five games, leading the Wildcats to a 4-1 record over that span.
The 4x400 relay team of Brzezinski, Dutcher, Becker and Huebner clocked in at 4:01.65 to set a school and Burns Wellness Fieldhouse record. The quartet finished 11.27 seconds faster than the second-place team and broke a school record that had stood since 2011.
Feb. 11, 2016 at the GLIAC Championships | Men’s Swimming & Diving
Knox-Leonard became the first Wildcat to win a men’s title at the GLIAC championship meet, setting a school and meet record in the 400 IM. He clocked in at 3:51.65, a time that automatically qualified him for the NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships. He went on to break that record at the national championship meet en route to an All-American finish.
Feb. 20, 2016 at the NCAA Central Regional Championships | Women’s Nordic Skiing
Schimpl captured the 5K freestyle regional crown with a time of 13:50.7, 10.2 seconds faster than the second-place skier. Her performance secured 24 points for the Wildcats, who ultimately edged Alaska-Fairbanks for the team title by two points. Northern Michigan was without four of its top skiers, who were at the World U-23 and World Junior Championships in Rasnov, Romania.
Mar. 11, 2016 at the NCAA National Championships | Women’s Swimming & Diving
Kearney took fifth in the 1-meter dive at the national meet, capturing All-American honors for the seventh time in her decorated career. Her 459.70 score was the best she posted in the 1-meter dive at the national meet. Earlier in the competition, Kearney took seventh in the 3-meter dive and first in the 1-meter prequalification round.