April 9, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. ---- The University of Georgia Athletic Association honored student-athletes from all 21 varsity sports at the annual awards banquet held at the Tate Center Grand Ballroom on Monday evening.
"I think it's a great opportunity to get so many student-athletes together for one cause and to showcase what they are doing here at the university in academics, in community service and in leadership and being rewarded for it," Director of Student Services Heather LaBarbera said.
"Tonight is one of those rare opportunities we get to thank them and recognize them for being well-rounded student-athletes, which is always very important to us," said Executive Associate Athletic Director Carla Williams.
Several special recognition awards were announced, including the athlete of the year, presented to winners swimming's Mark Dylla of Littleton, Colo., and Marta Silva Zamora of Santiago de Compostela, Spain from women's golf.
"It's a great honor to receive it my senior year especially," said Silva Zamora. "To be athlete of the year, not just in golf means so much. We have such a great athletic association here with all the sports at UGA. It's the best; I feel great."
Also, highlighting the banquet were the men's cross country and women's swimming and diving teams who were the recipients of the Faculty Athletics Representative Award for earning the highest team grade point average (GPA).
Joel Eaves Award winners, football's Ty Frix of Calhoun, Ga., swimming's Wendy Trott of Capetown, South Africa, and cross country's J.P. Hackney of Marietta, Ga., were recognized for earning the highest GPA for a male and female student-athlete. The gymnastics team was also awarded the Bulldog Cup for participation in community service, leadership programs, and support of other teams.
Other special award winners include:
Dick Bestwick Scholar-Athlete Award: J.P. Hackney, Marietta, Ga., men's cross country/track and field.
Clifford Lewis Leadership Award: Wendy Trott, Capetown, South Africa, women's swimming and diving.
Dick Copas Leadership Award: Ty Frix, Calhoun, Ga., football.
Hornsby Howell Community Service Award: Noel Couch, Towaco, N.J., gymnastics.
Inspiration Award: Jarryd Wallace, Watkinsville, Ga., member of Bulldog cross country/track and field team in 2008.
Athletes receiving recognition for earning all A's during their academic careers include Nicki Alexander, Atlanta, Ga., equestrian; Alex Andes, Atlanta, Ga., equestrian; Samantha Belcher, Carbondale, Colo., equestrian; Madi Berger, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., equestrian; Greg Bingham, Columbus, Ga., football; Olivia Boggs, Smyrna, Ga., women's swimming and diving; Jenna Buckley, Atlanta, Ga., soccer; Noel Couch, Towaco, N.J., gymnastics; Matthew DeGenova, Kenner, La.; football; Kathleen Eastman, Jackson Hole, Wy., soccer; Hadley Ferguson, Fernandina Beach, Fla., women's cross country/track and field; Will Freeman, Atlanta, Ga., men's swimming and diving; Ty Frix, Calhoun, Ga., football; Andrew Gemmell, Wilmington, Del., men's swimming and diving; Jessica Hale, Marietta, Ga., track and field; Julia Hemingway, Alpharetta, Ga., equestrian; Morgan Justiss, Alpharetta, Ga., equestrian; Lauren Herring, Greenville, N.C., women's tennis; Marrion Kalafut, Acworth, Ga., women's cross country/track and field; Alisha Laing, Schoolcraft, Mich., volleyball; Maddie Locus, Sugarland, Texas, women's swimming and diving, Erica Malagón, Athens, Ga., women's swimming and diving; Jordan Mattern, Aurora, Colo., women's swimming and diving; Michelle McKeehan, Greenwood, Ind., women's swimming and diving; Bret McDaniel, Atlanta, Ga., women's cross country/track and field; Emily McNutt, Woodstock, Ga., women's cross country/track and field; Connor Nolte, Alpharetta, Ga., men's basketball; Darcie O'Brien, Lawrenceville, Ga., women's swimming and diving; Jenna Owens, Highlands Ranch, Colo., soccer; Lucie Ondraschkova, Opava, Czech Republic, women's track and field; Sarah Perry, Lawrenceville, Ga., women's cross country/track and field; Camille Pfister, Kennesaw, Ga., gymnastics; Maria Palumbo, Alpharetta, Ga., soccer; Christian Riess, New Orleans, La., men's swimming and diving; Maria Salazar, Portland, Ore., equestrian; Kate Skoglund, Tualatin, Ore., equestrian; Rachel Stallman, Atlanta, Ga., equestrian; Kelsie Stovall, New Orleans, La., women's track and field; Paige Stawicki, Argyle, Texas, equestrian; Ali Sullivan, Wilton, Conn., equestrian; Wendy Trott, Capetown, South Africa, women's swimming and diving; Shannon Vreeland, Overland Park, Kansas, women's swimming and diving; Allison Updike, Nesquehoning, Pa., women's track and field; Shayla Worley, Orlando, Fla., gymnastics.
Academic Achievement honorees include:
Baseball: Colby May, Guyton, Ga.
Gymnastics: Kaylan Earls, Chicago, Ill.
Soccer: Ashley Baker, Lilburn, Ga.
Softball: Ashley Pauly, Kennesaw, Ga.
Tennis: Ignacio Taboada, Atlanta, Ga., and Alina Jeromina, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Volleyball: Briana Bahr, Pensacola, Fla.
Scholar-Athlete honorees include:
Baseball: Peter Verdin, Alexandria, Va.
Men's Basketball: Matt Bucklin, Marietta, Ga.
Football: Drew Butler, Duluth, Ga.
Men's Golf: T.J. Mitchell, Albany, Ga.
Men's Swimming: Bill Cregar, Sewell, N.J.
Men's Tennis: Wil Spencer, Ponce de Leon, Fla.
Men's Track: David Schiedt, Marietta, Ga.
Women's Basketball: Meredith Mitchell, Midfield, Ala.
Equestrian: Kate Skoglund, Tualatin, Ore.
Women's Golf: Tess Fordham, Metter, Ga.
Gymnastics: Kat Ding, Sparks, Nev.
Soccer: Torri Allen, Stafford, Va.
Softball: Taylor Schlopy, West Hills, Calif.
Women's Swimming: Wendy Trott, Capetown, South Africa.
Women's Tennis: Kelli Jordan, Tifton, Ga.
Women's Track: Kylie Foley, Acworth, Ga.
Volleyball: Alisha Laing, Schoolcraft, Mich.