Alyssa Barrera, Ola Jordheim Selected as Utah’s Pac-12 Hansen Medal Recipients
SAN FRANCISCO – Utah graduate softball student-athlete Alyssa Barrera and senior skier Ola Jordheim have been selected as Utah's recipients of the 2020-21 Pac-12 Tom Hansen Conference Medal. The Tom Hansen Conference Medal is awarded annually to each member institution's outstanding senior male and female student-athlete based on the exhibition of the greatest combination of performance and achievement in scholarship, athletics and leadership. Jordheim's twin sister, Guro, was a 2020 Hansen Medal winner for Utah.
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2020-21 Tom Hansen Conference Medal Winners are announced! Awarding each school's outstanding senior male & female student-athlete based on performance & achievement in scholarship, athletics & leadership.#BackThePachttps://t.co/ui30LhY51g
— Pac-12 Conference (@pac12) June 23, 2021
Barrera, a two-time team captain from Chino Hills, Calif., twice earned All-Pac-12 and NFCA All-Region honors, and finished her career ranked sixth in Utah history in games played & hits, fourth in at-bats and second in sacrifice flies. A 2017 Pac-12 All-Freshman choice, Barrera also was a three-time Academic All-Pac-12 choice and 2020 CoSIDA Academic All-District.
Barrera earned her bachelor's degree in communication with a minor in business and completed her master of science in information systems. Chosen to be the Senior Speaker for Utah's 2021 Crimson Carpet Awards, Barrera was active in the community with her fellow student-athletes, participating in "Trunk or Treat," serving as P.E. Volunteer at Whittier Elementary and in P.E. Day at Wallace Stegner Academy, as well as Fan Fest.
"I couldn't be more excited about the news of the Tom Hansen Conference Medal that Alyssa has received," said Amy Hogue, Utah's head softball coach. "This recognition is representative of the hard work she has put in since she set foot on this campus. She was our lone 'super senior' this year, after COVID shut down our season in 2020, and we relied on her to lead us both on and off the field. She may have been surprised at the news of the award, but those of us who have been lucky enough to rub elbows with her know she has earned this honor with the greatness she has achieved both academically and athletically. I am so proud of her!"
Jordheim, a native of Hemsedal, Norway, was a three-time All-RMISA second-team selection for the Utes. In 2019 he earned All-America honors in the 20K classic at the NCAA Championships, helping Utah win the national championship. For his career he had five podium finishes, 12 top-five finishes and 29 top-10 finishes.
A two-time USCSCA National Collegiate All-Academic Ski Team selection, Jordheim completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees in mechanical engineering in just three years with a 3.94 GPA. He earned six semesters on the A.D. Honor Roll and two semesters on the Dean's List, while also winning the 2021 Crimson Carpet Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award. He has been an active member of the Salt Lake City community, volunteering for Utah Athletics' Trunk or Treat and at the Deer Valley Rug Workshop among other endeavors.
"Throughout Ola's career at Utah, he has possessed a tireless work ethic towards excellence both on and off the skis, and incredible passion to live life to the fullest," said Miles Havlick, Utah's head Nordic coach, and the school's 2013 male Hansen Award winner. "His intoxicating energy has spilled over into his teammates, providing unwavering leadership that has raised the level of our program over the last three years. Ola is much deserving of this award and we wish him the best in his future pursuits beyond Utah Skiing!"
Barrera is Utah's second softball student-athlete selected for the award, joining Hannah Flippen (2017). Jordheim is the third men's skier selected, following previous honorees Havlick (2013) and Martin Bergström.
Conference medal winners have been named every year since 1960-61. In 2009, the Pac-12 renamed the award the Tom Hansen Conference Medal in honor of Hansen, who retired in June of 2009 after serving for 26 years as commissioner of the Pac-10.
Utah's Pac-12 Tom Hansen Conference Medal recipients:
2012: Derrick Shelby (football), Maria Graefnings (skiing)
2013: Miles Havlick (skiing), Rachel Messer (women's basketball)
2014: Ben Tasevac (men's tennis), Mary Beth Lofgren (gymnastics)
2015: Delon Wright (men's basketball), Georgia Dabritz (gymnastics)
2016: Brandon Taylor (men's basketball), Breanna Hughes (gymnastics)
2017: Hunter Dimick (football), Hannah Flippen (softball)
2018: Martin Bergström (skiing), Maddy Stover (gymnastics)
2019: Chase Hansen (football), Kari Lee (gymnastics)
2020: Terrell Burgess (football), Guro Jordheim (skiing)
2021: Ola Jordheim (skiing), Alyssa Barrera (softball)