Hamann inducted into Augsburg Hall of Fame
Natasha Hamann, Perham class of 1995, was recently inducted into the Augsburg College Hall of Fame.
Hamann finished her career as one of the best setters in the history of Augsburg's volleyball program, re-writing the record book in the assist category.
She finished her career with a school record 3,926 assists - the first of only two players to ever have 3,000 career assists at Augsburg. Her 8.76 assist-per-set mark is second best in school history. Her 1,193 assists in the 1997 season is a school record, one of three season assist totals Hamann has on the school's top-10 record list.
She also ranks second in school history in career aces (168) and eighth in career digs (1,071), while also contributing 375 kills and 114 blocks.
She played in all but one set of every match in her collegiate career, playing in a school record 123 matches and 448 sets.
Hamann earned all-Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) honors in both 1997 and 1998, while earning all-conference honorable mention honors in 1996.
Hamann was also a member of Augsburg's women's golf team for two seasons.
Hamann graduated Magna Cum Laude from Augsburg in 1999, majoring in biology.
She earned academic all-MIAC honors three times, was a GTE academic all-district selection her senior year, and was named a co-honor athlete in 1999.
Hamann later attended medical school at the University of Minnesota and now serves as a family practice physician at Allina Medical Clinic in Buffalo, Minn., where she lives.
Hamann cites the most important lessons about life truly do happen in youth.
Born and raised in Perham, watching athletes before her show the fun, hard work and competition of sports was exhilarating and her hope was to pass on the same passion to younger student-athletes.
High school sports are truly about the game/sport, as there are no promises of money, playing time, a professional career etc.
"I remember playing volleyball for the first time in the old high school gym (third grade), and the coaches gave us these orange nerf balls, and I had to go ask Mr. (Mike) Pederson where the 'real' volleyballs were. You know, the ones the big girls play with," Hamann said.
Peterson laughed and said the team had to start with the soft ones.
"Well, boy did my parents hear about that afterward, probably all day."
Being a Yellowjacket was a source of pride for Hamann.
"Going through the ranks, 'see one, do one, teach one.' I think you learn about the details of a sport as you play and in volleyball the ebb and flow of a dynamic team sport. The more I practiced the more flaws I found in myself, and that led to yet more practice. I feel sports (and other extracurricular activites) where you are a member of a team or group who want the same outcome is how real life works. You learn the similarities and differences about people and how to respect their individuality as well as the altruistic nature of the team or group and let us not forget in the age of computers/texting/and Facebook (which I do not participate in), that physical wellness and the high of physical activity leads to healthier and happier individuals. The medical statistics directly correlate and are quite amazing."
Hamann advises parents to encourage their kids to play anything, do anything physical as these habits start now and will lead to a healthy and happy future.
"Of course, I thank my past coaches who taught me at a young age and inspired me to be the best athlete I can be and the teammates I had the joy to play with who taught me so much about myself and the memories are as vivid as ever."
The following remarks are portions of Tasha's Augsburg Hall of Fame speech:
"What an honor it is to be inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame.
I want to honor all the Augsburg athletes that are here tonight for I would not be here without you. Past student-athletes have paved the way of excellence at Augsburg. Our coaches and teachers have come to expect discipline, determination, and desire in all that we as Auggies do on the court and in the classroom.
Not withstanding the expectation that our actions be done with an underlying sense of compassion, camaraderie, and most importantly Christianity.
The teammates I had the opportunity to play with and befriend, have taught me so much about life, and left me with wonderful memories and lifelong friendships
I vividly remember walking into the Augsburg gym on what was my first day of preseason volleyball. Though it was my first day as an Auggie, the team had started practice the week prior.
I was immediately met with smiles and warmth.
Coming from Perham, a small northern community, I became a member of a team so diversified in backgrounds, ethnicity, family life, study majors, and life goals.
My eyes were opened to a larger life experience in just one day. You can imagine what four years at Augsburg did for my perspective on human life and I believe has been instrumental to my practice of family medicine."