Minnesota Golden Gopher soccer players Kelsey Hood and Katie Bethke were each named to Soccer Buzz All-Great Lakes Region teams for their performances during the 2007 season, it was announced late last week. Hood, a junior midfielder from Ankeny, Iowa, was named to the All-Region Third Team for the second consecutive year. Bethke, a freshman forward out of Eau Claire, Wis., was named to the Great Lakes Region All-Freshman team.
This marks the third straight season that at least one Gopher athlete has received Soccer Buzz All-Region honors, and the second in three years in which multiple Minnesota players have been recognized. In addition to Hood’s third team selection a year ago, former Gophers Molly Schneider (goalkeeper) and Nicki Burnie (defense) were named to the All-Region Second and Third Teams in 2005. Current Gopher midfielder Clare Grimwood also became the first Minnesota player to make the regional All-Freshman Team in 2005.
Hood, who scored one goal and started every conference contest for Minnesota in 2007, was also named to the All-Big Ten Second Team for her play this fall. A former top-100 recruit, Hood has established herself as one of the best possession players in the conference. She earned the Gophers’ Co-Midfield MVP award in 2007 and will serve as a team captain for the second consecutive season in 2008.
Bethke’s honor comes on the heels of one of the finest debut seasons in program history. The freshman finished the season with a team-high 10 assists and led the Big Ten in that category during the regular season. She also ranked 14th nationally in assists per game (0.53). For her efforts, Bethke was also named to the Big Ten’s All-Freshman Team and earned Minnesota’s “Rookie of the Year” award.
Bethke’s assist total was the third-highest by a freshman in program history, and she teamed up with fellow forward Lindsey Schwartz to become the first Gopher duo since 1999 to notch at least 20 points apiece in the same season.
The Gophers finished the 2007 season with a 9-8-2 record and were ranked 13th regionally in the final Soccer Buzz polling.