Two outstanding Blinn College student-athletes were recognized for their performances this season when NJCAA All-America awards were announced Tuesday.
Garcia, a forward from El Paso, Texas, is the first All-American in Blinn soccer history.
“To be the first soccer All-American at our school is an honor,” Garcia said. “I worked hard for this moment, and as I continued to work, I believed this could be a possibility. I was always looking to score on the soccer field or help my team by making a positive contribution, and to be recognized for those efforts and also help bring more recognition to our program is an amazing feeling.”
In his second season as a Buccaneer, Garcia finished with a team-high 19 goals, which tied for the second-highest total in NJCAA Division I. Four of Garcia’s goals served as game winners and the talented striker added seven assists for a Buccaneer club that finished with a program-best 14-7 overall. Garcia also was named to the Region XIV all-region first-team.
Garcia concludes his time at Blinn as the program’s career scoring leader with 35 goals.
Garcia arrived at Blinn after graduating high school with zero NCAA Division I offers. He is now weighing 21 offers from Division I programs.
Blinn men’s soccer head coach Michael McBride has coached 23 All-American soccer players during his 23 years as a head coach. However, he passed along the credit for Garcia’s achievement to Garcia and assistant coach Rudy Roediger, who spearheaded Garcia’s recruitment to Blinn.
“This is a seminal moment for Blinn men’s soccer, and every person involved with our program is very proud of David’s historic achievement,” McBride said. “Kudos to coach Rudy for identifying David during the recruiting process, and kudos to David for making the most of the junior college route. He certainly seized the opportunity given to him, drove himself to be successful, and is now reaping the rewards.”
Dorotik earned her All-American nod thanks to a profound collegiate debut. The right-side hitter from East Bernard, Texas, led a talented group of Buccaneer hitters by registering a team-best 522 kills. Her kill total was fourth best in NJCAA Division I and helped propel Blinn to a 34-7 overall record and a fourth consecutive trip to the NJCAA Division I Volleyball Championship tournament. Dorotik also added 164 digs and 78 combined blocks on defense.
(Pictured: Blinn College freshman hitter Kellen Dorotik prepares to spike the ball against Casper College on Nov. 16, 2023)
“This is awesome, and it really reflects both the hard work I put into my game, and the hard work of the team that was around me this season,” Dorotik said. “Earning recognition like this is just the icing on the cake to a fantastic season we had, and it makes me want to work even harder next season.”
Blinn head coach Terry Gamble praised Dorotik for her abilities on the court but also for her first-rate character.
“Kellen is one of the best players in the country and she’s an even better young lady,” said Gamble. “It’s great when one of your players earns an award like this, but it’s even greater when it’s earned by someone who has great character like Kellen does. She will be the first one to tell you that this award was possible because of her teammates. Without a strong team around you doing their jobs, passing and setting the ball your way, this award doesn’t happen. Kellen’s appreciation for her teammates is obvious and that makes this moment more special.”
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 45 NJCAA national championships since 1987.