Tyra Aska & Alex Bedard named SWOSU athletes of the year
Updated: Jun 29
The SWOSU Athletic Department handed out their top honors on Wednesday night with a Virtual All-Sports Banquet to conclude the 2019-20 athletic season.
Claiming the top honors for the year were Lady Bulldog Basketball standout Tyra Aska and SWOSU Baseball’s Alex Bedard, who were named the Athletes of the Year, while Kaitlyn Dillon of SWOSU Volleyball and Academic All-American Football player Braden Sweet were chosen as the Scholar-Athletes of the Year.
Tyra Aska (Meridian, Oklahoma) has been a four-year starter for the Lady Bulldogs and gives the Female Athlete of the Year award to a basketball player for the third consecutive season. As a senior, she guided her team to their third consecutive Great American Conference regular season championship and the Lady Dawgs were selected to participate in the NCAA Division II Central Regional Tournament for the third straight season.
She is the second four-time All-GAC Selection in program history and she was named First Team All-GAC for the second straight year. Aska also earned a spot on the D2CCA All-Central Region team and she was named to the GAC’s All-Decade Team in January with her career still in progress. Aska graduates from SWOSU ranked fifth on the all-time scoring list with more than 1,500 career points and she finishes second in school history in career steals and assists.
Alex Bedard (Levis, Quebec) opened the 2020 season with the first home run in all of NCAA Baseball and never looked back. Although his senior season was limited to 18 games, he had at least one hit in 14 games with two five-hit games to his credit.
He led the Great American Conference in batting average, hits per game, runs per game and stolen bases while anchoring one of the top hitting team in the conference from his leadoff position. Bedard and his team were in contention for a spot in the postseason and on pace for their third consecutive 20-win season when play was halted due to COVID-19.
He becomes the sixth SWOSU Baseball player to be named SWOSU’s Male Athlete of the Year and second in the past three seasons.
Kaitlyn Dillon (Edmond, Oklahoma) helped the Bulldog Volleyball team to a second-place finish in the Great American Conference for the second straight year and earned honors as the GAC Defensive Player of the Year and a First Team All-GAC selection. She graduates as the program’s all-time leader in digs and service aces and she’s one of four players in conference history to record more than 2,000 career digs.
Earlier this year, she was one of two SWOSU Volleyball players selected to the GAC’s All-Decade Team and she was also chosen to represent the conference at the NCAA Student-Athlete Leadership Forum. Dillon has been a four-year starter for the Bulldogs and she becomes the third member of SWOSU Volleyball to be chosen as SWOSU’s Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. She will graduate from SWOSU next month with a degree in Business Marketing and a grade point average of 3.97.
Braden Sweet (Perry, Oklahoma) ranked fifth in the Great American Conference with 98 tackles during his senior season while also recording one interception, one fumble recovery and three pass breakups. He played his final season as a graduate student at SWOSU, having already claimed a bachelor’s degree with a 3.98 undergraduate grade point average in Accounting and he’s currently working towards a Master’s of Business Administration postgraduate degree with a 4.00 GPA.
Sweet started 30 games over the past three seasons and he graduates with 192 career tackles. In December, he earned his second CoSIDA Academic All-American honor and became the second player in program history to be named a First Team Academic All-American.
This is the seventh time in nine seasons that the SWOSU Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year award is claimed by a Bulldog Football player, with Sweet joining previous Academic All-Americans Cameron Nix and Brandon Roe to extend their streak to five straight years.
Most Valuable Player Awards by the coaches
Each coach spoke briefly about their season and presented their respective Most Valuable Player awards. A list of those can be found below:
Volleyball – Kaitlyn Dillon, senior (Edmond, Okla.)
Soccer – Elizabeth Moreno, freshman (Allen, Texas)
Cross Country – Sienna Collins, freshman (Saltillo, Texas)
Track & Field – Alexis Chao, sophomore (Lawton, Okla.)
Football – Braden Sweet, senior (Perry, Okla.)
Cheer – Miranda Opela, senior (Prague, Okla.)
Pom – Denise Anderson, senior (Elgin, Okla.)
Mascot – Coltan Ash, freshman (Broken Arrow, Okla.)
Men’s Basketball – Damion Thornton, sophomore (Edmond, Okla)
Women’s Basketball – Tyra Aska, senior (Meridian, Okla.)
Women’s Rodeo – Winter Williams, junior (Copan, Okla.)
Horse of the Year – Jimmy, owned by Winter Williams
Men’s Rodeo – Cody Keathley, sophomore (Sweetwater, Okla.)
Horse of the Year – PeeWee, owned by Layton Little
Women’s Golf – Zoe Morton, redshirt freshman (Perthshire, Scotland)
Men’s Golf – Kason Cook, senior (Hydro, Okla.)
Softball – Amanda Moreno, junio (Moore, Okla.)
Baseball – Alex Bedard, senior (Levis, Quebec)