Olivia Olson excels as the focal point of an offense or as the last line of defense.

Olson helped Benilde-St. Margaret's to back-to-back state titles — as the Red Knights' starting goalkeeper on the Class 2A soccer champion team and as the leading scorer on the Class 3A girls basketball championship team.

For her two-season success, Olson is the All-Metro Sports Awards Female Athlete of the Year for 2024.

"I'm so thankful for everybody that helped me achieve success along the way," said Olson, a senior who is bound for Michigan on a basketball scholarship. "I'm ready for the next chapter now."

Olson, a 6-1 guard, was named Miss Basketball in April after leading the Red Knights (27-5) to their second consecutive state championship with an 81-58 triumph over rival DeLaSalle in the final. She had 30 points, 15 rebounds and six assists in the title game.

Olson scored at least 30 points in all three state tournament games while shooting 54% from the floor and 88% from the free-throw line. She averaged 25.5 points per game over the season.

All five of Benilde-St. Margaret's losses came during the time Olson missed after she broke a bone in her left hand early in the season opener. She sat out seven games and nearly all of the opener. "I had a different view of the game sitting on the bench," Olson said. "I learned how to coach and help out my teammates."

The Red Knights finished the season on a 24-game winning streak.

"We played with a different energy this year," Olson said. "We wanted to win again to complete our goals. The second one was a statement: 'We are here to stay.' "

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Olson, a member of the Star Tribune's All-Metro first team, stands among the nation's most highly recruited basketball players. She was invited to the prestigious McDonald's All-American Game, and ESPN's HoopGurlz rankings have her No. 1 in the state and No. 15 in the nation in the Class of 2024. She holds school records for points (2,619), rebounds (1,078), assists (436) and steals (359).

"Olivia showed daily that the desire to be the best version of herself is what led to her greatness," Red Knights coach Tim Ellefson said. "She made every weakness a strength. This will undoubtedly continue throughout her playing career."

Olson returned to the soccer field for her senior season after not playing as a junior. "I really missed playing the sport," Olson said. "I wanted to play again and have fun with all my friends."

She said being a goalkeeper helps on the basketball court.

"Soccer really improved my vision of the court," Olson said. "It also helped in my communication to my teammates and IQ."

Red Knights soccer coach Scott Helling-Christy is glad she came back.

"She is one of the main reasons we won the state championship," Helling-Christy said. "She was a pleasure to coach, very respectful and hard-working. Olivia is an amazing competitive athlete and a great person."