Stephens, Barrett, Davis Headline Year-End Athletics Awards

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Macon, GA - The Wesleyan College Department of Athletics honored its student-athletes at its year-end awards banquet on Tuesday night. 

Earning top honors this year as the Pioneers' Athlete of the Year is Abby Stephens. A member of the soccer and softball teams, the sophomore from Griffin, GA, is known for her goal stopping abilities on the soccer field and her catching abilities on the softball diamond.  Having started every game of her career in goal, Stephens was named a captain of the soccer team this season.  Furthermore, her performance on the field earned her GSAC All Conference Team honors.  New to softball this year, Stephens started the year as an outfielder but quickly took over the catching responsibilities on a regular basis.

Named the Multi-Sport Athlete of the Year, sophomore Lexi Barrett comes by it honestly, having been a member of the soccer, softball and equestrian teams this year.  Known for her speed on the soccer and softball fields, she started 13 soccer games as a midfielder and was used primarily as a pinch runner and outfielder for the softball team.  Most in her element on horseback, Barrett is a member of both the Equestrian team and Equestrian Club.  She is very dedicated to her team and has a strong passion for horses. 

Receiving the 2013 Pioneer Spirit Award was Sydney Davis.  All year, the freshman from South Africa went above and beyond the physical parameters of athletics, embracing the department with a positive attitude, an outstanding work ethic, a heart for service and a team first mentality.  Davis was a member of both the soccer and basketball teams.  On the soccer field, she played both defender and mid-fielder and she started 14 games.  On the basketball court, she played post, starting 11 games and averaging over 21 minutes per game.  While committing a great deal of time to practices and games, she gave an equal amount of time to her studies as well as to community service efforts and helping others in need.  Always positive and encouraging regardless of the situation, she could be found at many other athletic events when she wasn’t playing in a game of her own. 

The athlete recognized for having achieved the highest overall grade point average this year was senior Stephanie Jamison.  Maintaining an impressive 3.91 GPA, she has proven herself to be a hard worker both in the classroom and on horseback.  Despite her obligations to the classroom, she has always gone above and beyond in dedicating her time to the equestrian team and working at the barn.  Clearly a master of time management, she has
learned how to strike a balance between academics, athletics and service.

For the second consecutive year, the Pioneer Equestrian team has won the Team GPA Award with an overall grade point average of 3.448. All freshmen on the team are required to attend study hall for three hours per week along with any other team members who have lower than a 3.0 GPA.  Having embraced this process, the equestrian team is setting a trend for excellence in athletics and academics and are proving to be a well-rounded group of young ladies.

Throughout the evening, each of the department's seven programs presented individual awards to their top athletes, and they are listed below:

Cross Country:
Most Valuable Runner - Ashly Annecchiarico
Team Leadership Award - Sheila Walton
The Endurance Award - Jessie Spannagel

GSAC Academic All Conference selections (GPA of 3.25 +/Sophomore, Junior or Senior) - Ashly Annecchiarico, Christina Mayfield, Sheila Walton

Soccer:
Most Outstanding Player - Jessica Suarez 
Best Defensive Player - Abby Stephens 
Soccer Student-Athlete Award - Sydney Davis 

GSAC All Conference team selection - Abby Stephens
GSAC Academic All Conference selections - Anna Jones, Christina Mayfield, Ansley Teipel

Volleyball:
Most Valuable Player: Rebecca Navarre
Most Outstanding Performance - Adrianne Woodward
Outstanding Volleyball Player - McKenzie Bragg

GSAC All Conference and All Freshman team selections - McKenzie Bragg
GSAC Academic All Conference selections - Hannah Finch, Rebecca Navarre, Sophia Theodus

Basketball:
Leadership Award - Sha'Vonda Jones
Heart & Hustle Award - Kellie Bacon

GSAC All Conference team selection - Kellie Bacon

Softball:
Most Valuable Player - Colleen DeGraff
Coach's Award - Aisha Coles
Rookie Award - Sara McMahon

GSAC Academic All Conference selections - Colleen DeGraff, Hannah Finch, Anna Jones, Christina Mayfield, Katy Trietsch

Tennis:
Most Competitive Award - Anastasia Kozhakova 
Most Dedicated - Katie McIntosh 

GSAC Academic All Conference selections - Anastasia Kozhakova, Katie McIntosh, Lauren Mitchell, Gloria Oduyoye, Fangjie Wu

Equestrian:
Coach's Award - Beth Hurst
Most Improved - Charline Van der Beek
Best Sportsmanship - Brittany Pye 

IHSA All-Academic First Team selections (GPA of 3.8 +) - Stephanie Jamison, Brittany Pye, Aaron South, Charline Van der Beek
IHSA All-Academic Second Team selections (GPA of 3.5 +) - Beth Hurst

IHSA Jon Conyers Memorial Scholarship recipient - Katlynn Cross