Ducote, Louw named SFA athletes of the year
NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The Stephen F. Austin athletics department honored its student-athletes at the annual Champions Dinner in the Baker Pattillo Student Center Grand Ballroom Tuesday evening. SFA is in the midst of a successful athletics season that has the program in the hunt for another SLC Commissioner's Cup.
In addition to the individual honors that were handed out Tuesday, SFA also honored its three Southland Conference championship teams, which included soccer, women's indoor track and field and tennis. All three squads recorded historical seasons that will be remembered by SFA for years to come. The women's soccer team recorded one of the most dominant seasons in conference history after posting a 15-3-1 overall record, and a perfect 9-0 mark in league play. SFA recorded 13 shutouts during the year, surrendering only one goal in conference outings. The Ladyjack track and field team was just as impressive winning their fourth-straight conference indoor title, and seventh consecutive overall. The SFA group of seniors became the first group in program history to go all four years having never lost a conference meet. The women's tennis team closed out the season with a magical run to its first-ever league championship. The SFA women recorded a program-best 23 wins, and won the conference tournament to advance to the NCAA Championships for the first time in school history. The team has been ranked for the majority of the season, and achieved a conference-best national ranking of No. 35 earlier this season.
Every year the banquet is highlighted by the Ralph Todd and June Irwin Athletes of the Year Awards. Senior linebacker Devin Ducote was named the Ralph Todd Award winner, while soccer standout Kylie Louw received the June Irwin Award for a second-straight season.
A former walkon, Ducote became one of the best linebackers in the nation. Moving from the secondary in 2008, Ducote overcame serious injuries to help lead the Lumberjacks to the 2009 and 1010 SLC titles while leading the league, and finishing second in the nation with 137 tackles in 2009. A three-time All-SLC selection, the former All-American recorded more than 400 career tackles, including 32 for losses and 5.5 sacks. He played a key role in becoming part of the first class to bring back-to-back conference titles to SFA, and during his final season helped the 'Jacks lead the nation in sacks and tackles for losses.
Louw was the recipient of the June Irwin Female Athlete of the Year Award for a second consecutive season. A former SLC Freshman of the Year, Louw set a new SFA single-season school record with 14 assists in 2011 while leading the Ladyjack to the one of their best seasons in program history. SFA finished the year 15-3-1 on the season, and wrapped a perfect 9-0 conference slate to win the league championship. The two-time SLC Player of the Year selection was named the league's 2011 student-athlete of the year, and enters her final year as the school's all-time leader in assists. Following the school year, Louw will head to London, England with the South African National team to compete in the 2012 Summer Olympics.
Two-year letterman Jacob Fincher was the winner of the Dick Wright Award. One of the Southland's top defensive ends during his career, Fincher overcame injuries to help the Lumberjacks lead the nation in sacks and tackles for losses in 2011. Fincher graduates from SFA recording 72 tackles, including 14.5 for losses and 9.5 sacks while guiding the Lumberjacks to the 2009 SLC title and a top-10 national ranking.
Standout pole vaulter Macy Agnew was named the 2012 Steve McCarty Award winner. A proud member of the SFA Athletics family, Agnew has been a part of seven SLC championship teams having never lost an indoor conference title. Agnew was the conference runner-up, and earned All-Southland Conference during the indoor season as a junior. She will look to close out her career, along with the rest of the 2012 senior class, with a fourth-straight outdoor title in San Marcos, beginning Friday May 11, 2012.
The school's all-time leader in RBIs, Jarid Scarafiotti received the Bob Shelton Award Tuesday evening. A former walk-on, Scarafiotti battled his way into the starting lineup as a freshman and leave the university as one of the all-time greatest players. A two-time All-SLC selection, Scarafiotti is ranked in the school's all-time top-10 in games played, starts, hits, home runs, RBIs, doubles and runs scored. In addition to his success on the diamond, Scarafiotti is the true definition of a student-athlete being named the league's male scholar athlete of the year in 2010 and twice being named to the Academic All-SLC team.
2012 SFA Champions Dinner
Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Ralph Todd Award – Devin Ducote
June Irwin Award – Kylie Louw
Steve McCarty Award – Macy Agnew
Bob Shelton Award — Jarid Scarafiotti
Dick Wright Award — Jacob Fincher
Kathy McGough Award — Madison Hanlan
Jené Carter Award – Randi Plentl
Mart Crawford Award – Devin Ducote
Cally Belcher – John Steel
Scotty Bailess Award – Madison Hanlan
Michelle Reid Award – Sabrina Burns
Lucille Norton Award – Tammara Marion
Sue Gunter Award – Porsha Roberts
Gary Blair Award – Amina Sawyer
Pam Thorstensen Award – Kylie Louw
George Reese Award – Mitchell McLeroy
Ladyjack Golf MVP – Chelsea Simmons
Ladyjack Bowling MVP – Nicole Parkhurst
Dianne Baker Award – Alina Shazhko
Robert Maluski Award – Adam Saloom
Gwen Cole Award – Lauren Smith
Buddy Lowery Award – Taylor Smith
George Johnson Award – Antonio Bostic
Murray Shaw Academic Awards
Baseball – Josh Wright
Men's Golf – Jordan Wynn
Women's Golf – Sara Jones
Men's Basketball – Desmond Haymon
Women's Basketball – Amina Sawyer
Soccer – Kylie Louw
Softball – Jessica Arana
Tennis – Alina Shazhko
Women's Track & Field/Cross Country – Becca Bluebaugh/Amanda Walters/Heather McPherson/Carrie Hahn
Men's Track & Field/Cross Country – Adam Saloom
Football – Jacob Fincher
Volleyball – Sabrina Burns
Bowling – Sierra Gibbons