DOBSON — Surry Community College student-athletes were honored and recognized on May 5, during the Athletic Awards Ceremony held at the Shelton-Badgett North Carolina Center for Viticulture & Enology.
SCC President Dr. David Shockley welcomed the student-athletes, parents and guests and during his speech emphasized the values and life lessons that are gained by participating in athletics. He also commended the student-athletes for all of their efforts and commitment to community service projects during the academic year.
The volunteer work by the Surry softball team was recognized as “Champions for the Community” in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Review for the second consecutive year. The national publication acknowledged the team for its outstanding volunteer work with Operation Christmas Child. Other community service highlights include the baseball team assisting with the Surry County Sheriff’s Association Food Drive and Delivery for the ninth consecutive year and the volleyball team hosting the “Dig Pink” event for the sixth consecutive year to raise funding and awareness for breast cancer.
“All of our student-athletes participate in community projects throughout the academic year. Many of the teams do more than one charitable effort, which gives these student-athletes the opportunity to make a difference in their communities and serve as role models,” said Surry Athletic Director Mark Tucker.
Surry awarded the “Student-Athlete of the Year” to sophomore golfer, Gatlin Hiatt of North Surry High School. Hiatt has been a volunteer Young Life Leader for the past three years, an active member in her youth group and performs in the Praise Band at Antioch Baptist Church. While at Surry Community College the last two years, she has been a Dean’s List and President’s List student posting a 3.61 Grade Point Average and being inducted into Phi Theta Kappa. Hiatt has also served as a College Ambassador this past academic year. She has worked in the Marketing Department at Surry and also completed an internship with SouthData in Mount Airy. Hiatt was one of three winners of the redesign of the Surry
Cellars wine labels, and the W. Byron Wolfe Tri-County Charitable Foundation selected her logo design in a competitive process. In addition, she was named Directors Choice Winner for Best Original Love Song for Paramount Songs. On the golf course, Hiatt has been named All-Region for the past two years, while also qualifying each year for the Women’s National Tournament. The past two seasons, she has received the Coach’s Award in golf.
Baseball Coach Jamie Lowe recognized eight Surry baseball players who were selected for honors by the coaching staff: Most Valuable Player, Ben Temple of Forbush High School; Offensive Player of the Year, Jamison Nagle of South Stokes High School; Defensive Player of the Year, Tanner Lomax of West Stokes High School; Pitcher of the Year, Travis Tuttle of Reagan High School; Most Improved, Colton Narron of Smithfield-Selma High School; and the Roy A. Vernon Coach’s Award to Ryan Gravley of Northwest Guilford High School, Ross Hoffner of Davie High School, and Brad Miller of Indian Rocks High School. The Roy A. Vernon Coach’s Award is given to the baseball player who demonstrates outstanding citizenship, character, work ethic and sportsmanship while also being a quality student-athlete. The award is named after former assistant baseball coach, Roy Vernon, who coached 14 years at Surry.
The baseball players were also acknowledged for their assistance with the Surry County Sheriff’s Association Food Drive for needy families, a project the team has done for nine consecutive years. Additionally, the baseball team hosted youth from the Surry County Children’s Center on campus for various events.
The Surry men’s golf team finished as Region X Runners-Up with Chandler White capturing the overall Region medalist. White qualified to participate in the Men’s National Tournament held in Scottsboro, Alabama. In addition, Surry golfers Kasie Tolbert and Gatlin Hiatt qualified for the Women’s National Tournament in Mesa, Arizona, with Tolbert finishing 28th overall while Hiatt finished 54 out of 106 golfers.
Women’s and Men’s Golf Coach Tom Pendergraft recognized several golfers at the recent banquet: Most Valuable Player (Men), Chandler White of West Forsyth High School; Most Improved, Josiah Blevins of Elkin High School; and Coach’s Award, McKinley Johnson of East Wilkes High School. In addition, Pendergraft recognized the Most Valuable Player (Women), Kasie Tolbert of North Surry High School; and Coach’s Award, Gatlin Hiatt of North Surry High School. The Surry golfers were also recognized for hosting the Region X Fall Golf Tournament.
Softball Coach Blaine Bullington recognized several of the Lady Knights softball players during the banquet. Shey Steelman of Forbush High School was recognized as Most Valuable Player. The Defensive Player of the Year went to Rachel Wagoner of Starmount while Kelsie Griffin of Hibriten High School was named Offensive Player of the Year. Haley Tickle of North Surry High School was honored as Pitcher of the Year with Molli Huffman of West Wilkes being recognized with the Coach’s Award.
Surry softball team claimed the Region X Championship and first ever school appearance in the Softball Junior College World Series in Clinton, Mississippi. The Lady Knights finished the season ranked 19th nationally. Surry softball players Regan Gentry of Forbush High School, Molli Huffman of St. Stephens High School, Rachel Wagoner of Starmount High School, Lacey Grubbs of West Stokes High School, Taylor Little of South Iredell High School and Shey Steelman of Forbush High School were named to the
Region X All-Tournament team. Shey Steelman was named Most Outstanding Player of the Region X Softball tournament. In addition, Surry’s Rachel Wagoner, Kelsie Griffin, Lacey Grubbs and Shey Steelman were named first team All-Region. Taylor Little was named second team All-Region, and Haley Tickle was named Honorable Mention All-Region. Shey Steelman was named Region X Pitcher of the Year for the second consecutive year.
The team was also recognized for a second consecutive year as “Champions for the Community” by the NJCAA for their volunteer efforts with Operation Christmas Child in which team members collected and sent packages to needy children across the world for Christmas.
Volleyball Coach Jan Marion-Kiser recognized five Surry volleyball players during the banquet. The Most Valuable Player was Haley Hartman of Starmount High School.
Sidney Shelton of South Stokes High School received the Coach’s Award. Defensive Player of the Year went to Cassidy Palmer of West Stokes High School and Offensive Player of the Year was Cassidy Gregory of East Wilkes High School. The Most Improved Award went to Tiffany Coe of Surry Central. Haley Hartman was also named All-Region in volleyball.
The volleyball players participated in the “Spike Hunger Campaign,” collecting over 1,000 pounds of canned food items for the Foothills Food Pantry. Team members also organized and held the sixth annual Dig Pink event, which raises funds for breast cancer awareness and research.
For more information about the Knights Athletic program, contact Mark Tucker at 336-386-3217 or go to www.surryknights.com. Follow the team at twitter.com/SurryKnights or facebook.com/surryknights.