Valley athletes well represented in college sports this fall

SNOQUALMIE - There are a number of local athletes competing for various college sports teams this fall.

Leading the list are former Mount Si football players Alex Smart and Brett Bergstrom who are attending Eastern. Smart, a redshirt freshman, has seen time as a backup quarterback this season, going 4-for-7 in that role in three games. He threw for one touchdown and 42 yards in a win earlier this season against Western Oregon.

As for Bergstrom, the redshirt junior has seen most of his time on special teams, as both a punter and kickoff specialist. On kickoffs, he's done well. He's averaged almost 61 yards a kick on his kickoffs, and has 10 touchbacks in 33 kicks. Both Smart and Bergstrom have also seen time defensively this season for the 3-2 (2-1 Big Sky I-AA Conference) Eagles.

Also making major noise once again this season is soccer player Kristen Berndt. A former Wildcat girls soccer star who tore it up last year as a college freshman, Berndt is doing it again this year as a sophomore for the Whitman College womens soccer team in Walla Walla. She leads the team with six goals, 13 points and 41 total shots, 22 of which have been on goal (also tops). Two of her five goals have been game winners. Berndt's efforts have helped the Missionaries to a 6-3-2 (4-2-2 Northwest Conference) record.

Volleyball has its stars, as well. The last three big stars to rise through the Mount Si program are all playing small college ball at local schools. In addition to senior Stephanie Turner at PLU, former Wildcats Maggie Olson (Central Washington) and Marissa Hill (Western Washington) are playing on conference rival teams this season.

Hill, after her stellar start to the season that saw a "Player of the Week" award come her way, has seen less action as of late, playing most recently, Sept. 22 for the Vikings in a loss to Seattle University. Hill, a freshman this season, is fourth in total kills with 100 and fifth in total service aces with 10 for the 11-6 (7-2 GNAC Conference) Vikings.

Olson, a redshirt freshman, has also seen limited action; she has played in only five games for the nationally ranked 14-3 (8-1 GNAC) Wildcats. Olson last played Sept. 29 in a win over Seattle Pacific. She is third on the team in sets with 30.

Even local athletes who did not graduate from Mount Si are doing well. Fall City resident Scott Barnum, who graduated from Eastside Catholic and is a freshman at Whitworth College in Spokane, is getting it done as a goalie with the Pirates mens soccer team. Barnum currently is 5-0 with two shutouts and a 0.79 goals against average in his first college soccer season.

Other local athletes include Mount Si grads Caitlin Braun, Jessica Hanna, Kristen Everett, Emily White, Yosef Yetneberk, Chaz Carr and Geoff Hise. Hanna plays womens soccer for Whitworth; White plays for Bethany College womens volleyball team (currently 5-8) in California; and Everett competes at another California school, Notre Dame de Namur (currently 4-17). Last Saturday Bethany defeated NDNU at home and the two teams meet again Nov. 10.

Braun is listed on Eastern Washington's womens soccer roster, but has not seen varsity game action this season. Yetneberk is playing this fall for the Bellevue Community College mens soccer team, Carr is playing on the University of Puget Sound football team and Hise is finishing his college career this season on Western Washington's football squad.

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