Day, Hefner named athletes of the year at athletic banquet

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Carson-Newman football player Kevin Day (Soddy-Daisy, Tenn.) and softball player Brittany Hefner (Talbot, Tenn.) have been named the university's male and female athlete of the year, respectively.  The honors were determined by a vote among Carson-Newman coaches, administrators, team officials and Eagle Club members.

Cross country's Hannah Reese (Brandon, Miss.) and football's Zach Witherspoon (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) took home the female and male scholar athlete of year awards, respectively.  Tiffany Delias (Morristown, Tenn.) of the women's tennis team won the Eagle Club's Academic Athlete of the Year.

Day, a member of the 2012 AFCA Good Works Team, picked up Male Athlete of the Year honors thanks in part to his selection to the Don Hansen All-America first team.  The distinction made him Carson-Newman's seventh consensus All-American since the school joined Division II in the early 1990s and its fist in a decade. 

The status puts Day in the company of current C-N defensive coordinator Mike Clowney and former Washington Redskin and Houston Texan Cedric Killings. 

The Jacob's Blocking Award winner and first team all-SAC center helped clear the way for the nation's top rushing offense in Division II.  The Eagles piled up nearly 380 yards a game while scoring 52 rushing touchdowns en route to an NCAA quarterfinal appearance.  The 52 scores on the ground are the most among all schools in all divisions.  Day has graduated and now teaches social studies at Knoxville West.


Hefner garnered the Eagle Club Female Athlete of the Year honor after leading the nation and conference in runs batted in with 75.  That total reset the single season record for both the SAC and Carson-Newman.  Hefner obliterated a school record for home runs in a year with 19 – setting that school record in early March before the season reached its midpoint. 

Hefner nearly won the first ever triple crown in SAC history, she was second in the league in batting average with a .451 figure. A two-time SAC player of the week, first team all-SAC selection and SAC player of the year, Hefner was just the fifth player in NCAA Division II history to hit three grand slams in a single season. 

She had a school record 141 total bases this year and matched a Carson-Newman single game record with eight RBI against Lees McRae. 

Delias took home Academic Athlete of the Year thanks to her pristine 4.0 grade point average.  The women's tennis team's six seed went 6-6 in singles and 4-4 in league action.  The English literature major graduates this May.

Witherspoon, a key special teams cog for Ken Sparks' football club, helped C-N to a quarterfinal appearance against Valdosta State this year. In the classroom, he has maintained a 3.712 grade point average as a double major in biology and exercise science. 

Reese took home the Female Scholar Athlete honors after taking home first place at the Eagles home meet at Panther Creek Park. A food, nutrition and dietetics major, Reese has maintained a 3.9739 grade point average at Carson-Newman. She is the second straight cross country runner to be named Female Scholar Athlete of the Year. 

Jaycob Coleman (Norton, Va.) was lauded with the Charles E. McDonald Leadership Award while all-American kicker Curt Duncan (Morristown, Tenn.) took home the Roy Harmon Award.

2012-2013 Eagle Club Athletic Awards

Eagle Club Male Athlete of the Year

Kevin Day, Football

Eagle Club Female Athlete of the Year

Brittany Hefner, Softball

Eagle Club Academic Athlete of the Year

Tiffany Delias, Tennis

Male Scholar Athlete of the Year

Zach Witherspoon, Football

Female Scholar Athlete of the Year

Hannah Reese, Cross Country

Roy Harmon Award

Curt Duncan

Wayne Sloan Booster of the Year

Andy Croley


Athletic Training

Wounded Warrior of the Year - Kirby Ellis

Wounded Warrior of the Year - Alex Briit



Leadership Award – Kaila Nelson

Eagle Spirit Award – Shaleia Whitehead 

Cheerleader of the Year -  Morgan Weber and Jessica Hamby


Dance Team

Leadership Award – Tessa Deforges

Technique Award – Tinsley Tullos

Dancer of the Year – Lindsay Mays


Men's Soccer

Freshman of the Year – Sindre Welo 

Player's Player of the Year – Trystan Dafydd

Player of the Year – Rumwald Le Guevel 


Women's Soccer

Freshman of the Year – Mikayla Gregg 

Player's Player of the Year – Sam Thomsit

Player of the Year – Sidnee Edwards


Men's Tennis

Most Improved Player – Jon Allen

Most Wins – Jon Allen 

Most Valuable Player – Juan Sebastian Perez


Women's Tennis

Most Improved Player – Brooke Sanderson

Most Wins – Brooke Sanderson

Most Valuable Player – Megan Wilson



Bobby Wilson Scholar Athlete Award – Ryan Fillers

Frosty Holt – Most Dedicated Award – Zach Long

Best Defense -  Kevin Franchetti

Best Offense – Bo Ausmus

Best Pitcher – Chris Armstrong




Best all-around Award – Brittany Hefner

Best Defense – Bri Shoemake

Most Dedicated – Cassie Elliot


Women's Basketball


Best Offense – Tatum Burstrong

110% Award – Jai Jai McLaughlin

Coaches Award – Nikki James

Most Improved – Lacy Miller



Captain – Brandon Haywood

Captain – Kevin Day

Most Improved Award – Sean Rawson

Eagle Spirit Award – Will Alderman

John Abe Teague Award – Zack Fleming

McDonald Leadership Award – Jaycob Coleman


Men's Golf

Most Valuable Player – Gavin Hay
Most Improved – Chase McCown

Lowest Stroke Average – Jonathan Kim-Moss


Women's Golf

Most Improved – Chelsea Passmore

Eagle Spirit – Meridith Hawkins

Most Valuable Player – Danielle Bee-ahn-co



Most Valuable Player – Angelle Hayes

Best Exemplified Team Theme "Ignite Greatness" Angelle Hayes

Coaches Award – Kianna Sedlacek


Men's Cross Country

Workhorse – Mark Edwards

100% Eagle – Joey Nielson

Frontrunner – Luke Hall


Women's Cross Country

Workhorse – Amanda Bowman

100% Eagle – Sammy McConeghey

Frontrunner – Hannah Reese


Men's Track

Outstanding Thrower – Lucas Mathis

Highest Point Winner – Cassadine Blassingame

Most Versatile – Randall Freeman


Women's Track

Most Dedicated – Anna Bauder

Team Leadership Award – Hannah Reese

Highest Point Winner – Jessica Azor