Carlos Garcia and Vivian Lacy were named the male and female athletes of the year at Tusculum College’s annual athletics banquet Monday night at Pioneer Arena. Over 350 student-athletes, coaches and guests were in attendance at the event, which honors individuals for both on the field and off the field success.
Garcia, a senior on the Pioneer men’s team, was named the 2008 South Atlantic Conference Player of the Year where he posted an 18-1 singles record, including 7-0 in league matches. The Caracas, Venezuela native was also named the SAC Tournament Most Valuable Player, while becoming the first men’s player in school history to post an undefeated SAC career singles record (25-0). He was also a four-time All-SAC selection, leading TC to SAC regular season and tournament titles.
Lacy, a senior outside hitter on the Tusculum volleyball team, was the SAC Player of the Year for her sport as she led the Pioneers with 4.75 kills per game, which were ninth in the nation. The Palm Bay, Fla. product was named the AVCA National Player of the Week and became the first volleyball player in school history to earn Division II All-America honors.
Women’s Basketball coach Missy Tiber and tennis coach Tommy Arnett are this year’s co-recipients of the Art Argauer Coach of the Year Award.
Tiber, who is in her third season at Tusculum, earns this honor for the first time. Tiber led the Pioneers to its first 20-win season in over a decade, posting a 26-5 record and winning the SAC Championship. Three of her players earned All-Conference honors, including Stephany Neptune, who earned All-America recognition. Tiber guided TC to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history, while accounting for the program’s third straight winning season, all during her watch. For her efforts, she was named Division II Region Coach of the Year.
Arnett, who is wrapping up his seventh year in Greeneville, earns the Argauer Award for a second time. Arnett guided the Tusculum tennis program to a combined 40-4 record, including a SAC Men’s Championship, while sweeping both the men and women’s SAC Tournament titles. Eight of his players earned All-Conference honors and both his squads are nationally ranked. Both will also be competing at next week’s NCAA Tournament. Arnett was also named the SAC Men’s Tennis Coach of the Year, marking the third time in his career that he has earned that accolade.
Senior volleyball player Alexis Rowles was the recipient of the Walter T. Dette, Jr. Spirit Award. This award is presented to the graduating senior who has excelled in several areas while making outstanding contributions to Tusculum Athletics. Rowles, a native of Simpsonville, S.C., earned All-SAC Second Team honors in 2006 and was the SAC Scholar Athlete for volleyball in 2007. She was also tabbed to the ESPN the Magazine Academic All-District IV First Team and is the school’s all-time leader in digs.
Soccer player Amanda Tripp was the female recipient of the Duffield Award, which is given to the top male and female student-athlete for academic achievement. Tripp earns this honor for a first time posting a 3.9 cumulative grade point average. There are two male recipients of the Duffield Award with identical 3.94 GPAs. Honored this year are baseball player Dustin Morrow and tennis standout Henrique Rodrigues.
Academic achievement was also recognized with the presentation of the Male and Female Freshman of the Year Academic Awards. Cross country runner Simon Holzapfel is the male recipient, while Blake Thompson of the women’s tennis team was the female award winner.
2007-08 TUSCULUM COLLEGE ATHLETICS MOST VALUABLE PLAYERS
Athletic Training (Nathan McCoy Memorial Award): Katie Catterall & Kim Coapstick
Cheerleading (Most Spirited): Hannah Smith
Women’s Cross Country: Alicja Dembna
Men’s Cross Country: Simon Hozapfel
Football: Jeremy Thompson
Men’s Soccer: Bruno Conceicao
Women’s Soccer: Danielle Tanner
Volleyball: Vivian Lacy
Men’s Basketball: Jordan Lear
Women’s Basketball: Stephany Neptune
Baseball: Maikol Gonzalez & Boo Morrow
Softball: Ashley Basilicato
Men’s Tennis: Carlos Garcia
Women’s Tennis: Bronwyn Hartley
Men’s Golf: Chris Wynne
Women’s Golf: Mary Ann Vizcarrondo