VIRGINIA BEACH -- Accomplishments of more than 300 student-athletes at Virginia Wesleyan College were celebrated Wednesday at the 44th annual Marlin Athletic Awards ceremony held in the Jane P. Batten Student Center.
In addition to highlighting the top achievements by different sports throughout the 2012-13 athletic year, special recognition was also bestowed on individuals who earned a part of the spotlight during their respective seasons.
Top award winners included senior Jessica Edelman (Voorhees, N.J./Eastern Regional), who was named the Norfolk Sports Club Award, given annually to the College's top student-athlete. David Buckingham, Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Enrollment Services, presented the award to Edelman, a member of the highly successful women's soccer program.
She is a two-time All-American and an Academic All-American. She has been an offensive leader throughout her VWC career and has won numerous post-season awards, including two Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards in her sport. Edelman is a seven-time Dean's List honoree and owns a 3.95 grade point accume as a business major.
Jack Ankerson, the Executive Director of the Hampton Roads Sports Commission and the Master of Ceremonies, presented Kala Guy (Fishersville/Wilson Memorial) andChris Astorga (Suffolk/Virginia Beach Cape Henry Collegiate) with the Senior Award, honoring the College's top senior student-athletes. Guy, the volleyball program's first all-region and first All-American, is VWC's all-time leader in kills and total attacks. She holds numerous records and is a three-time ODAC first team honoree. In the classroom she is a double major in recreation and leisure studies and religious studies was named the outstanding student in both majors last week. She is a six-time Dean's List honoree and owns a 3.88 GPA.
Astorga has played an integral part in the success of the men's basketball team for the past four years. His Marlin teams have finished 98-23 overall and 53-11 in ODAC player. Those teams advanced to the NCAA tournament all four years. Astorga led the Marlins in scoring this year with 15.0 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. He led the team in three-point shots made, ranked second in rebounds and shots, and scored in double figures in 25 of 31 games. He exits the program with 1,511 points scored, ranking him No 7 among VWC's all-time leading scorers.
Dr. Timothy O'Rourke, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Kenneth R. Perry Dean of the College, presented the W.B. Shafer, Jr. Scholar-Athlete Awards to sophomore Kerri-Leanne Taylor (Stockport, England/The Hill School, Pa.) and juniorDarren Driscoll (Haymarket/Battlefield). Taylor, a member of the women's basketball team, owns a 4.00 GPA as a double major in communications and English. Driscoll, a top distance runner in cross country and track, is a five-time Dean's List honoree and owns a 3.96 GPA. He was the 2012 ODAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year in indoor track and in cross country.
The Marlin Athletic Club/Donald M. Forsyth Award was presented by Dr. Larry Hultgren, the NCAA Faculty Athletic Representative. This year's recipients are junior Kelly Keys (Manassas/Osbourn Park) and Driscoll. Winners of this award must have made a contribution to his or her team(s), must exhibit enthusiasm, have a great work ethic and be a leader. They must also be involve in college community affairs and own respectable academic achievements.
Keys, a member of the softball team that is currently in Montclair, New Jersey, preparing for the opening round of the Montclair Regional in the NCAA championship tournament, owns a .396 batting average. She ranks second on the team in hits, first in doubles, third in home runs, runs scored and steals. A business major, minoring in English, Keys is a five-time Dean's List honoree who will graduate a year early. She owns a 3.8 GPA.
Driscoll owns the fifth and eighth fastest 8K times in VWC running history. He is an All-ODAC and All-Sout honoree in cross country. In indoor track, Driscoll owns the VWC record in the 3K and was part of the Marlins' record-setting distance medley relay that set the fastest time in ODAC championship meet history.
Andrea Hoover, the Academic Integration Coordinator, the women's head volleyball coach, and the Senior Woman Administrator, presented the VWC Freshman Athlete Award, along with J.P. Stewart, the head men's lacrosse coach. Hoover presented the award to Courtney Bogan (Round Hill/Woodgrove), a member of the softball team, and Stewart presented the award to Josh Currier (Peterborough, Ontario/Holy Cross-Hill Academy), a member of the lacrosse team.
Bogan currently owns a .427 batting average, the third highest by a rookie in VWC history. She was named to the 2013 ODAC All-Tournament team and was named a National Player of the Week by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association earlier this season. Currier emerged as one of the top rookie in the nation, scoring a VWC record 74 points. That broke the varsity record of 70 set in 1995. He led the ODAC in assists and points per game and was named the ODAC's Rookie of the Year, a first for the VWC men's lacrosse program.
The 2013 award recipients:
>>Norfolk Sports Club - Jessica Edelman, women's soccer (Sr., Voorhees, N.J./Eastern Regional)
>>Senior Athlete - Kala Guy, volleyball (Fishersville/Wilson Memorial) and Chris Astorga, men's basketball (Suffolk/Virginia Beach Cape Henry Collegiate)
>>W.B. Shafer, Jr. Scholar-Athlete - Kerri-Leanne Taylor, women's basketball (Stockport, England/The Hill School, Pa.) and Darren Driscoll, cross country and track and field (Haymarket/Battlefield)
>>MAC/Donald M. Forsyth Award - Kelly Keys, softball (Manassas/Osbourn Park) and Driscoll
>>Freshman Athlete - Courtney Bogan, softball (Round Hill/Woodgrove) and Josh Currier, men's lacrosse (Peterborough, Ontario/Holy Cross-Hill Academy)
>>Elaine F. Sears Courage Award - Hunter Melius, cross country/track (Shakopee, Minn./Shakopee)
>>Athletics Community Service Award - VWC women's lacrosse team
>>Battered Fish Award - Kala Guy
>>Marlin Coaches Awards:
Women's soccer -- Jenna Riegel (Sinking Spring, Pa./West Lawn Wilson)
Field hockey -- Nikki Cuthbert (Morrisville, Pa./Fairless Hills Pennsbury)
Women's basketball -- Katie Tassa (Bristow/Manassas Osbourn Park)
Baseball -- Josh Miller (Norfolk/Greenbrier Christian)
Men's lacrosse -- Mikey Connors (Horseheads, N.Y./Horseheads)
Golf -- Kevin Wolfe (Chesapeake/Indian River)
Men's soccer -- Josh Richardson (Hampton/Kecoughtan)
Men's basketball -- Jordan Griggs (Chesapeake/Hickory)
Cheerleading -- Ashlyn Slater (Lewisville, N.C./West Forsyth)
Volleyball -- Taylor Allen (Bowie, Md./Bladensburg Elizabeth Seton)
Women's lacrosse -- Brittani Hans (Lexington Park, Md./Great Mills)
Men's Cross Country -- Gabe Higgins (Chester/Thomas Dale)
Men's Track and Field -- Cody Below (Norfolk/Virginia Beach Ocean Lakes)
Women's Track and Field -- Charnelle Adkins (Richmond/J.R. Tucker)
Women's Cross country -- Courtney Gwin (Virginia Beach/Floyd E. Kellam)
Softball -- Tori Higginbotham (Glen Allen/J.R. Tucker)
Men's tennis -- Donnie Greathouse (Yorktown/Grafton)
Women's tennis -- Stephanie Bittner (Westminster, Md./Francis Scott Key)
>>Special Friends of Athletics - Kathy Bartkus, Mike Rigby, Susan Larkin, Butch Everett