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Vote: Who should be SBLive's Minnesota Athlete of the Week? (9/19/2023)

Read through the candidates and cast your vote

Here are the candidates for the Minnesota High School Athlete of the Week for Sept. 11-17 as nominated by coaches, fans and readers.

Read through the nominees and cast your vote. Voting will conclude Sunday at 11:59 p.m. and the winner will be announced Monday.

If you would like to make a nomination in a future week, please email with “MNHSAW Nomination” in the subject line.

Editor’s Note: Our Athlete of the Week feature and corresponding poll is intended to be fun, and we do not set limits on how many times a fan can vote during the competition. However, we do not allow votes that are generated by script, macro or other automated means. Athletes that receive votes generated by script, macro or other automated means will be disqualified.


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Jackson Puelston, North Branch (Boys)

The freshman goalkeeper had 22 saves in a 2-1 victory over Big Lake on Sept. 11. He leads the state with 107 saves on 123 chances.

Jonathan Banegas, Worthington (Boys)

The senior had three goals and two assists in a 7-0 shutout of Fairmont, Sept. 12. He also assisted on six of seven goals scored in a shutout of Austin, Sept. 9. His 16 assists are the most in Minnesota.

Jacob Oliver, St. Cloud Cathedral (Boys)

The senior midfielder had four goals and four assists over four games last week – all victories. He had two goals and two assists in a 10-0 rout at Central Minnesota Christian on Sept. 12 and scored the lone goal in a shutout at Hillcrest Lutheran Academy on Sept. 16. He’s tied for fifth in the state with 14 goals.

Sam Perez, St. Charles (Girls)

The junior midfielder put 21 shots on goal over two games, scoring five times. She had a hat trick on 13 shots in a 5-0 win at Caledonia, Sept. 14, and another two on eight shots at Winona Cotter, Sept. 12.

Maddyn Greenway, Providence Academy (Girls)

The sophomore forward scored eight goals and assisted on another to lead her team to three shutout victories last week. She had a hat trick and an assist in a 7-0 win at Spectrum on Sept. 16. She had another hat trick in a 6-0 win over St. Paul Academy two days prior.


Maddy Benka, Minnehaha Academy

The senior outside hitter had 34 kills, 10 digs and five aces in a 3-2 victory over Mounds Park Academy, Sept. 11. She had 19 kills, 17 digs and three aces in a 3-0 win over Blake two days later. She’s second in Minnesota with 197 kills.

Kadence Hesse, Sleepy Eye

The senior had 13 kills, four aces, four digs and three blocks in a 3-0 win over New Ulm Cathedral on Sept. 12. She leads the state with 19 solo blocks.

Grace Tverberg, Concordia Academy

The junior setter had 37 assists in a 3-1 win at Apple Valley, Sept. 14, 26 assists in a 3-0 win at Cretin-Derham Hall, Sept. 13, and 23 assists in a 3-0 win at St. Agnes, Sept. 12. Her 283 assists are fifth-most in Minnesota.

Erica Lee, Benilde-St. Margaret’s

The senior outside hitter had 30 kills and three blocks in a 3-2 loss at Minneapolis Southwest on Sept. 15. A day prior she had 13 kills without a single error in a 3-0 win over St. Louis Park. She also had 10 kills, seven digs, and two blocks in a 3-0 victory at Jordan on Sept. 12.

Sonja Laaksonen, Holy Family

The junior committed to Western Kentucky played eight matches last week, scoring 91 kills, 53 digs, 12 aces and 10 blocks to pace Holy Family to a 5-3 record. She ranks third in kills (186) and fifth in digs (146).


Caleb Hullopeter, Owatonna

The senior caught three passes for 97 yards and two touchdowns and rushed one time for 36 yards in a 17-7 win over New Prague on Sept. 15.

Kalvin Eull, Rogers

The junior running back had 18 carries for 287 yards and five touchdowns in a 52-21 rout at Irondale, Sept. 14. He leads all of Minnesota with 708 rushing yards and is tied for fifth with nine touchdowns.

Leyton Patzer, Forest Lake

The senior carried the ball 24 times for 200 yards and two touchdowns and had one catch for 10 yards in a 24-8 win over Mounds View on Sept. 15. He’s fourth in the state with 563 rushing yards and eighth in rushing yards per game.

Teddy Knapp, St. Thomas Academy

The senior defensive lineman recorded three sacks and six total tackles in a 35-17 win over Cretin-Derham Hall, Sept. 15. His five sacks on the season are tied for the most in Minnesota.

Carter Holcomb, Rochester Mayo

The senior had seven receptions for 165 yards and a touchdown, averaged 11.8 yards per punt return, 17 yards on kick returns, and recorded eight total tackles in a 46-27 win over Farmington on Sept. 15. He’s fourth in the state with 363 receiving yards.

Ryan Meagher, Minneota

The junior rushed 28 times for 271 yards and three touchdowns in a 42-28 win at BOLD, Sept. 15. His 549 rushing yards rank fifth in Minnesota and his 10 touchdowns are tied for second.

Colby Milbradt, Ogilvie

The senior had seven total touchdowns, throwing four and running for three more, in a 61-20 drubbing of Hill City/Northland on Sept. 15. He completed nine of 13 pass attempts for 197 yards and rushed 10 times for 47 yards. His 10 passing touchdowns are tied for the most in the state.

Dan Plamann, St. Agnes

The junior had three interceptions, a fumble recovery, and five total tackles in a 35-7 win over Breck, Sept. 15. On the other side of the ball, he caught six passes for 128 yards and a touchdown. His six interceptions are the most in Minnesota.

Veronica Veran, Anoka

The senior placekicker hit the deciding field goal from 23 yards out to lift Anoka over Blaine, 18-16 on Sept. 15. She was also good from 20 yards earlier in the game. Her three field goals made (on three attempts) are third-most in the state.

Jackson Thornburgh, Apple Valley

The junior completed 13 of 19 pass attempts for 224 yards and two touchdowns and ran eight times for 30 yards in a 31-7 win at St. Louis Park, Sept. 14. His 630 passing yards are ninth-most in Minnesota.