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Nick and Sara Ohman to join UW-Stout Athletic Hall of Fame Saturday

MENOMONIE — Ohman is a name that conjures memories of sporting excellence and state championships for many in Glenwood City and throughout the area.

Brothers Nick and Rob Ohman helped lead Glenwood City to state basketball and football championships, respectively. A pedigree that was passed down to them from their father Roger, who was a football standout for the Hilltoppers back in the late 1960s and 1970.

Nick Ohman, a four-sport letterwinner who graduated from Glenwood City High School in 2001, took his stellar achievements and naturalborn skills to the next level when he enrolled at the UW-Stout and became one the football program’s most accomplished quarterbacks over the next four years.

Those achievements have earned Nick Ohman long-standing recognition and induction into the 2014 UW-Stout Athletic Hall of Fame.

There will also be another Ohman receiving the same honors when a record-setting five athletes are enshrined into the Stout’s Athletic Hall of Fame this Saturday, October 25 – his wife Sara.

Sara (Kahl) Ohman, a native of Menomonie, was an accomplished Blue Devil in her own right. Kahl was a four-year starter of the women’s basketball team and helped lead the team to a conference championship in her sophomore year.

“Being inducted into the Stout Hall of Fame is a culmination of hard work, commitment, and mentoring,” wrote Nick Ohman in an emailed response to the Tribune Press Reporter earlier this week.

“This wouldn’t be possible if it weren’t for my family’s support and excellent coaching I’ve been fortunate to have throughout my life,” added Nick. “I’m honored to be a part of UW-Stout history and join many other outstanding athletes in the Hall of Fame.”

Sara Kahl Ohman concurred, writing, “It’s an honor to be inducted into the Stout Hall of Fame. I can’t believe that after all the hard work and many hours I spent in the gym that I would be awarded by a Hall of Fame induction.”

Nick And Sara Ohman are the first married couple to enter the UW-Stout Hall of Fame at the same time. Stout has one other married couple, gymnasts Terri Traczyk and Mark Rezac, who were inducted in different years.

It’s a feat that makes this honor even more special to the couple.

“It will forever be a special memory for us that we will be inducted together,” said Sara. “Stout already holds a special place in our hearts because that is where we met. Now we are being inducted into an athletic hall of fame together.”

“Sara and I met when she was playing basketball and I was working for the event staff at Stout,” recalled Nick. “I was sweeping the floors at half time and running the scoreboard for the men and women’s basketball games.”

“It is very special that Sara and I are being inducted together especially since we were dating for the majority of our careers at Stout,” added Nick. “We were able to watch each other’s games and see how much work and sacrifice it took to be successful.”

The 2014 UW-Stout Athletic Hall of Fame class features early 21st century athletes whose names still set prominently towards the top of their respective sports’ record books.

Joining the Ohmans in the 2014 Class are: football players Luke Bundgaard (2000-03) and Ben Knepper (2000-03) members of the 2000 WIAC championship team and Jeff Dotson, the goalkeeper for the Blue Devil hockey team from 2000-04.

Retired UW-Stout Chancellor, Charles W. Sorensen, will receive the UW-Stout Athletic Distinguished Service Award.

Nick Ohman was one of the most complete quarterbacks in UW-Stout football history stated a news release from Stouts’ Sports Information Department that announced the 2014 Hall of Fame Inductees this past June.

Nick Ohman was as comfortable running the ball as he was throwing the ball.

Ohman, a second team All-American and a unanimous All-WIAC selection his senior year, threw for 6401 career yards, completing 479-of-936 passes and rushed for 1925 yards. With a 25-13 record, Ohman was the winningest quarterback in school history.

During his senior year, Ohman was the team’s leading rusher, gaining 892 yards on 174 carries and four touchdowns. Five times during his senior year, Ohman recorded 100-yard plus rushing days, accomplishing the feat seven times in his career.

Ohman, a four-year starter, played in 38 games over his career and either completed a touchdown pass or ran for a touchdown in 35 games. Sixteen times, Ohman threw for more than 100 yards in a game and eight times threw for three or more touchdowns.

Ohman was selected as the WIAC offensive player of the week ten times over his career and four-times earned national player of the week honors.

In a 31-21 win over nationally ranked UW-La Crosse in 2004, Ohman collected 472 yards of total offense, completing 30-of-47 passes for 347 yards and two TDs and rushed for 125 yards and a score.

Upon graduation, Ohman was the Blue Devils’ fifth all-time leading rusher and is still today the third all-time passing leader. He threw for 56 touchdowns, currently third on the all-time list.

“One memory that stands out was beating UW-Eau Claire under the lights in 2002 before a sellout crowd to witness the “war on 94” battle,” said Nick of one of his best on field memories

“My second memory was playing against my brother Rob and UW-River Falls in 2001. My parents had shirts made that were half Stout and half River Falls.”

Sara Kahl Ohman was well known for her prowess on the hardwood.

A four-year starter for the Blue Devils women’s basketball team from 2000-04, Sara Kahl played in 106 games over her career and scored in 105 of them. She earned first team All-WIAC and third team all-region honors during her senior season, a year that saw her lead Stout in scoring (14.0) and rebounds (5.7).

Kahl ranked fourth in league play in scoring, second in steals (2.89) and 13th in rebounds. As a senior, Kahl led the Blue Devils in scoring in 13 games and scored a career-high 25 points against Kalamazoo College.

Kahl scored her 1000th career point and went on to finish her career with 1119 points, currently 11th on the UW-Stout all-time scoring list. Her 469 rebounds is currently 13th on the all-time list.

The Ohmans both acknowledged their families influence during their formative years as a big part of their future successes.

“My parents and my two older brothers,” stated Sara when asked about her early influences on her athletic career.

“My parents were always very involved and excited about our athletics. My brothers were very rough and competitive with me,” she added.

Nick’s biggest mentors and influences naturally came from his dad Roger and older brother Rob.

“My dad and my brother were the biggest influences on my athletic career growing up,” Nick wrote.

“My dad was always there to play catch with us, hit ground balls or make fun of us for dropping balls that hit us in the hands. He would always ask us, ‘Did it hit you in a bad spot!’”

“My brother was three years older than me so I always had the benefit, or pain and suffering, of playing against bigger and better competition which made me better and fueled my competitive side,” added Nick.

Nick’s competitive spirit was honed early on and came to the forefront during his high school days in Glenwood City. Ohman earned 14 letters in all including four each in football, basketball, baseball, and a pair in track and field (which he competed at only in his freshman and sophomore years).

In his senior year (2000-2001), Nick led the Glenwood City football team to an 11-2 record, a second-place conference finish (behind Spring Valley) and an appearance in the level four (state semifinals) playoffs. That fall, Ohman passed for 946 yards and eight touchdowns and ran for 1,591 yards with another 25 touchdowns.

That level of performance throughout the year earned Nick the All-Northwest Football Player of the Year Award.

That winter, Ohman helped the Hilltoppers claim their first and only state basketball title with impressive wins over Kenosha Saint Joseph in the semifinals and Weyauwega-Fremont in the championship to take gold in Division 3. Glenwood City finished the year 26-1, the best mark of any Toppers basketball team. Ohman was named to the state’s all-tournament team.

Sarah Kahl Ohman enjoyed much success in high school athletics for Menomonie, where she played volleyball, basketball, track and softball. She surpassed the 1,000 point career points mark as a high school basketball player.

The Ohmans both graduated in 2006 (Sara in the spring and Nick in the winter after playing arena football in Green Bay for part of the year) with degrees in business management.

The couple were married in July of 2007 and currently reside in Fargo, North Dakota where Nick has been a general manager of a commercial tire center for Bauer Built since January of 2007.

Sara worked for three years as a recruiter for Thrivent Financial following graduation. She is now a stay-at-home mother for their three young daughters: Jordan, 6; Lauren, 3; and Corin, eight months.

The couple will be returning to the area Thursday in preparation for their induction into the Hall of Fame.

Nick said his plans include a little hunting on his parents’, Roger and Joyce Ohman’s, property.

The couple said several family members and friends including Sara’s parents Roger and Judy Kahl will be in attendance for the honors.

The Hall of Fame festivities are scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 25. The inductees will be introduced at halftime of the UW-Stout/UW-Platteville football game, which will get underway at 2 p.m. at Don & Nona Williams Stadium. The banquet and induction will be in the Great Hall of the UW-Stout Memorial Student Center, beginning with a reception at 5:30 p.m., dinner at 6:30 p.m. and the ceremony at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the event are $35 for adult, $20 for 12-years-and-under. No charge for children 5-years-and-under. For more information, please contact the Athletic Office at 715-232-2224.