Photo Courtesy: SAU Athletics (Mike Jones)
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (GAC) - Southern Nazarene senior softball player Amy Madden and Southern Arkansas senior cross country runner Mickey Hammer received the 2012-13 Great American Conference Scholar-Athletes of the Year, announced Monday at the second annual GAC Night of Champions from the Bricktown Event Center.
The league's faculty athletic representatives or designees voted on the male and Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards. They were not allowed to vote for their own student-athletes.
2012-13 GAC FEMALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
AMY MADDEN, SOUTHERN NAZARENE, SOFTBALL
In her first year in the GAC, Madden earned First-Team All-GAC honors - her third-straight all-conference first-team selection - and Second-Team NFCA All-Central Region. She led the conference in on-base percentage and placed second in home runs, slugging percentage and RBI.
Madden established the Crimson Storm career records for home runs, 50, and RBI, 213, as she hit above .370 for the fourth-straight year. She earned NFCA All-American honors as a sophomore and junior and garnered the Diamond Sports Catcher of the Year as a sophomore. She owns the top three single-season home run tallies in Southern Nazarene history as also set the single-season RBI record with 78 in 2012.
She added the Capital One Academic All-America of the Year honor - an award recognized as the most prestigious academic award in collegiate athletics. She graduated with a 4.00 GPA as a biology/chemistry major. Previously, she made the Capital One Academic All-District team following both her sophomore and junior seasons. She received the Southern Nazarene University President's Award - the highest honor available for any SNU student. She will continue her education at the University of Oklahoma Medical School.
Other nominees for the 2012-13 GAC Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year award included Arkansas-Monticello senior Maggie Sands (softball), Arkansas Tech senior Jessica Weatherford (basketball), East Central senior Ashley Cardwell (golf), Harding senior Amber Schinzing (volleyball), Henderson State senior Amber Wilburn (softball), Northwestern Oklahoma State senior Stephanie Martin (golf) Ouachita Baptist senior Allison Frizzell (volleyball), Southeastern Oklahoma State senior Paige Priest (softball), Southern Arkansas senior Brittany Wood (softball) and Southwestern Oklahoma State senior SaRaya Oyler (basketball).
Former East Central softball player Emily Kennemer won the inaugural Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year award.
2012-13 GAC MALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
MICKEY HAMMER, SOUTHERN ARKANSAS, CROSS COUNTRY
Hammer completed a stellar four-year career at Southern Arkansas as he won the individual title at the 2012 GAC Cross Country Championships. He added the GAC Runner of the Year award and First-Team All-Central Region honors. In his two years in the GAC, he won seven Runner of the Week awards. He leaves SAU as the record holder in the 8-K and 10-K. Hammer received the 2013 Auburn Smith Award - the most prestigious award available to student-athletes at Southern Arkansas.
He graduated Cum Laude with a degree in exercise science. During his time at SAU, he earned a spot on the Dean's List four times. He became the recipient of the distinguished Outstanding Student Award for the College of Education. Hammer received a nomination for Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges.
He has offered his time to the Marshall Physical Therapy Clinic and assisted with in-patient and out-patient therapy. Active in the community, Hammer also participated in the Ace Project that worked on reconstructing different areas on SAU's campus. He earned an Exercise Science internship at the Spectrum Sports Performance in Winter Park, Fla.
Other nominees for the 2012-13 GAC Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year award included Arkansas-Monticello senior Taylor Eaves (baseball) Arkansas Tech senior Jared Williamson (basketball), East Central senior Dakota Robbins (golf), Harding senior Austin Smithey (football), Henderson State senior Nathan Eller (baseball), Northwestern Oklahoma State senior Trevor Long (baseball) Ouachita Baptist senior Landon Flax (baseball), Southeastern Oklahoma State senior Chris Roussell (basketball) Southern Nazarene senior Matt Berry (baseball) and Southwestern Oklahoma State senior Colton Rainey (football).
Former Southeastern Oklahoma State football player Travis Kincheloe won the inaugural Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year award.