(MSUB Athletics release)
BILLINGS – Claiming top academic honors in the NCAA on Wednesday, Montana State University Billings women’s soccer junior Amanda Hemmen was named a Google Cloud first-team academic All-American announced by the College Sports Information Directors of CoSIDA.
The center back from Renton, Washington, carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average while working towards her degree in biology. “This award only continues to show the depth of Amanda’s character, and what she means to the program and our university,” MSUB women’s soccer head coach Stephen Cavallo commented. “She commits so much of her life to her academics that it would be impressive for her to have the academic success she has even if she was not a student-athlete. It makes the achievement even more remarkable because she excels so much on the field as well.”
Hemmen is the first MSUB women’s soccer player to earn first-team academic All-America since Jennifer Larsen won the honor in 2012. Overall she is the sixth player in MSUB history to earn the award and the fourth to garner first-team honors.
Proving herself as one of the top defenders in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference, Hemmen earned honorable mention all-league for the second time in her career after a standout 2018 campaign. The second-year captain started all 17 matches on the Yellowjackets’ back line, and ranked second on the team with 1,453 minutes played. She played the full time in seven different games, including a career-high 110 minutes against Colorado Christian University on August 30.
Offensively, she contributed as well with a goal and an assist for three total points. Her second career goal came against the University of Nebraska Kearney on September 6, and helped her earn Rimrock Classic all-tournament honors.
Hemmen earned academic all-GNAC for the second straight year this fall, and for the first time was recognized as a CoSIDA academic all-district selection.
“As a team captain Amanda is constantly looking out for the best interests of the program,” Cavallo said. “The fact that she is able to juggle so many things and excel really shows who Amanda is: A winner. We are lucky to have her in our program.”
Hemmen’s 4.0 GPA is tied for the highest in the GNAC, and she was 1 of 3 players from the conference to earn academic All-America honors. Julia DeVere of Seattle Pacific University, who is a senior with a 3.91 GPA in psychology, joined Hemmen on the first team after being named the 2018 GNAC Defensive Player of the Year. DeVere’s teammate Sophia Chilczuk, a sophomore with a 4.0 in pre-medicine/physiology, was a third team selection.
The Yellowjackets went 4-12-1 overall in 2018 and were 1-11 in GNAC play to finish in ninth place.