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Westwood Patriots’ Nathan Beckman an Upper Peninsula Sports Hall of Fame scholar: 4 in U.P. honored for excellence as students, athletes

Westwood’s Nathan Beckman, center, is guarded closely by Marquette’s Raffy Millado in a game played at the Redmen gym on Jan. 29 in Marquette. (Photo courtesy Daryl T. Jarvinen)

HARRIS — A Westwood High School senior was among four Upper Peninsula student-athletes to receive a prestigious honor at the 48th annual U.P. Sports Hall of Fame banquet at the Island Resort and Casino in Harris on May 11.

Nathan Beckman was one of the soon-to-be graduates to receive a $1,000 scholarship from the UPSHF executive council. The other recipients were Paxton Johnson of Escanaba, Sydney Herioux of Gladstone and Luke Terrian of Kingsford.

Beckman was unable to attend the induction and presentation apparently due to a school function, though the other three were present.

Beckman has a 4.0 grade-point average and is valedictorian of the Westwood class of 2019.

He has earned nine varsity letters in football, basketball and track and field. He has been a state qualifier in Business Professionals of America for three straight years and has been his class’ vice president all four years of high school.

Westwood's Nathan Beckman, right, puts up a short jumper as Gladstone's Nolan Johnson defends in their high school boys basketball game played at the Patriots' gym on Feb. 18. (Photo courtesy Daryl T. Jarvinen)

In his essay that accompanied the application for the scholarship, Beckman stated that high school sports have taught him how to fight through adversity, which will prepare him for the future.

Beckman will attend Michigan Tech University and play football while majoring in engineering.

Johnson, the three-time defending U.P. girls golf champion, has a 4.2 GPA and is in the top 10 of Escanaba’s class of 2019. She has six varsity letters in volleyball and golf, and has signed to Northern Michigan University, where she will major in biochemistry and play on the women’s golf team.

Johnson’s recommendations stated she has overcome many obstacles throughout her high school career, and is well respected by her peers. She works at the Escanaba Country Club and teaches golf to youth in the summer.

“I’m very thankful and excited at the same time, but I am appreciative of all the people that helped me get here because I didn’t do this all by myself,” Johnson said.

Herioux has a 4.0 GPA and is valedictorian of Gladstone’s class of 2019. She has 12 varsity letters in tennis, swimming and softball. She will attend Saginaw Valley State and major in accounting and play softball.

“After my sophomore year, I kind of got into the whole downstate recruiting thing on the (softball) travel team,” Herioux said. “I got my offer in September and I accepted the offer in late October because I kind of knew that’s where I wanted to be .. so it was my junior year that I decided.”

Herioux also touched on the life of a student-athlete and what it means to get this honor.

“It’s tough going from practice to practice, to homework, to school the next day or to games. It can be tough, but it’s really awesome .. I love it,” she said.

Terrian has a 4.1 GPA and is ranked No. 1 in the Kingsford class of 2019 while taking advanced classes. He has earned nine varsity letters in football, basketball and baseball.

Terrian has been selected as student of the month and has an Air Force math and science award. He will attend Michigan Tech to play football and major in pre-med.

“This is one of the biggest honors I’ve ever had,” Terrian said. “I’m just so thankful for my parents and my family that have helped me get here, all the teams I’ve played on and all my teammates that have helped make this possible because they’re all team games .. so I feel very, very honored.”

In his essay, Terrian wrote about how high school sports have taught him valuable lessons about time management and how much time must be devoted to each area of his life in order to be successful.