Leidner's first Gophers start earns weekly honor

  • Article by: NEWS SERVICES
  • Updated: September 24, 2013 - 2:03 AM
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Gophers quarterback Mitch Leidner gained 151 yards rushing and scored four touchdown Saturday.

Photo: MARLIN LEVISON • mlevison@startribune.com,

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Gophers quarterback Mitch Leidner was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week on Monday after rushing for four touchdowns and 151 yards against San Jose State.

Leidner also completed five of 12 passes for 71 yards in Saturday’s 43-24 victory.

The last Gopher to be selected freshman of the week was Philip Nelson, on Oct. 29, 2012. Nelson, now a sophomore, missed Saturday’s game because of a strained right hamstring. Leidner, a redshirt freshman from Lakeville South, was making his first career start.

Truax wins middleweight title

Caleb Truax of Osseo stopped Cerresso Fort of St. Paul in the fourth round of their scheduled 12-round bout Saturday and claimed the Minnesota state middleweight boxing championship.

The victory, at the Minneapolis Convention Center, was the fifth in a row for Truax (23-1-1), who also won the vacant U.S. Boxing Association middleweight title.

In other bouts Saturday, Jamal James of Minneapolis improved to 11-0 by defeating Mohammed Kayongo for the state welterweight title, and Tony Lee (8-1-1) of St. Paul beat Jeremy McLaurin for the state lightweight championship.

Another big week for Dixon

Gophers senior middle blocker Tori Dixon received Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors in volleyball, her third weekly honor in four weeks this season.

Dixon also was named the Player of the Week following the UAB/Samford Challenge, and added Defensive Player of the Week accolades after the Diet Coke Classic the weekend of Sept. 7.

Dixon led the charge for the Gophers this past weekend at the Dartmouth Duals. Playing in three of the four matches, she had 40 kills and was selected to her third all-tournament team. Dixon averaged four kills per set, hit .485 on the weekend, led the team with five aces, 13 blocks and established 26 digs as a six-rotation middle blocker.

She registered only seven errors in 68 attempts and gathered a team-best 53 points for Minnesota. On the season, the All-America leads the team in kills (166), kills per set (4.26), attack percentage (.471), aces (14), blocks (53) and blocks per set (1.36).

The Gophers will play host to Indiana in their Big Ten opener Wednesday night at the Sports Pavilion, and will play host to Purdue on Sunday.

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