Alaska Sports Hall of Fame announces 2019 director awards
It’s a tip of the cap to community leaders and their contributions to the state’s sports scene. The Alaska Sports Hall of Fame announced their 2019 Directors awards on Thursday. The award recipients will be recognized alongside the Class of 2019 during the Hall of Fame ceremony on April 25.
The Joe Floyd award recognizes significant and lasting contribution to Alaska through sports, and that’s exactly what Christiansen did over his coaching career. Christiansen helped create the University of Alaska Anchorage hockey program, and went on to be the Seawolves' head coach from 1979-96. He led UAA to the quarterfinals of the 1991 NCAA Tournament and is the winningest coach in program history.
The Trajan Langdon award recognizes leadership, sportsmanship and inspiration, which perfectly describes Andy Beardsley. The marathon runner from Anchorage pushed his friend Larsen Klingel in a wheelchair through the 2018 Boston Marathon. Klingel has cerebral palsy. The duo survived poor weather conditions to finish in the top half of the field.
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The Pride of Alaska Award is given to athletes for consistent excellence in athletic competition, and no UAA athlete comes to mind quicker than Caroline Kurgat. The Kenyan distance runner continues to rewrite the record books at UAA, winning five NCAA National Championships.
Girdwood’s Keegan Messing also won the Pride of Alaska Award after a career year on the Grand Prix figure skating circuit. Messing won a silver medal at the 2018 Skate Canada International, and placed third at Canadian nationals.
Kendall Kramer’s trophy case continues to grow. The West Valley junior has already won multiple state championships in cross-country skiing, cross-country running and track. At just 16 years old she competed with the United States ski team at a World Cup event in Quebec City, Canada.
If his name wasn’t already a dead giveaway, Jersey Truesdell is an athlete, excelling in multiple sports for the Soldotna Stars. The junior was an all-state quarterback for the Stars, and the Div. II offensive player of the year. Truesdell also played a huge role on the Stars' basketball team, and was named third team all-state.
More information on these athletes can be found at