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Scholarship Recipients In Scholar-Athlete Award
Program Announced In Classes C & D

EAST LANSING , Mich. - Feb. 28 - Ten student-athletes at Class C and D member schools of the Michigan High School Athletic Association have been selected to receive scholarships through its Scholar-Athlete Award program.

Farm Bureau Insurance, in its 17th year of sponsoring the award, will give a $1,000 college scholarship to 32 individuals who represent their member school in at least one sport in which the Association sponsors a post-season tournament.  The first 30 scholarships are awarded proportionately by school classification and the number of student-athletes involved in those classes; and there are two at-large honorees to assure minority representation among the scholarship recipients.

A minimum of 12 scholarships will be awarded to Class A student-athletes, 6 female and 6 male; 8 scholarships will be awarded to Class B student-athletes, 4 female and 4 male; 6 scholarships will be awarded to Class C student-athletes, 3 female and 3 male; and 4 scholarships will be awarded to Class D student-athletes, 2 female and 2 male.  The 2 at-large recipients may come from any classification, and are designated by their school at the time of entry.

Each of the scholarship recipients will be honored at halftime ceremonies of the Class C Boys Basketball final game at the Breslin Student Events Center in East Lansing on March 25. Commemorative medallions will be given to other finalists in recognition of their accomplishments.

The Class C Scholar-Athlete Award honorees are:   Alexandria E. Boyd, Saginaw Nouvel;  Joseph Davis, Potterville; Shannon Dibble, Charlevoix; Nathan Gonzalez, Springport; Megan Hooper, Traverse City St.  Francis; Christopher Paul Momont, Iron Mountain; Ben Thayer, Kalamazoo Hackett.  The Class D Scholar-Athlete Award scholarship recipients are:  MacKenzie James Donohue, Fulton-Middleton; Timothy Erdmann, Auburn Hills Oakland Christian; Anna Leutheuser, Hillsdale Academy; and Katelyn Mitchell, Marion.

Overviews of the scholarship recipients of the Class C Scholar-Athlete Award follow. A quote from each recipient's essay is also included:

Alexandria E. Boyd, Saginaw Nouvel.  Three-year letterwinner in tennis and track, two-year letterwinner in volleyball.  Tennis, volleyball and track all-academic awards and senior captain.  Tennis all-league and all-region awards.  Volleyball all-area award.  Track all-region award.  Tennis and track MHSAA Lower Peninsula Finals qualifier.  Class Officer freshman, sophomore, and senior years.  National Honor Society member and president.  Teens 4 Life club member four years.  Math Club member senior year.  Student Ambassadors member sophomore, junior, and senior year.  Theatre production of Grease junior year.  Undecided on which college to attend, but plans to major in chemistry or physical therapy.

Essay Quote  – “Participating in athletics and gaining knowledge of sportsmanship is a key factor in adult development, preparing, and grooming students for life.  If taught correctly, sportsmanship becomes not only an integral part of athletics, but also a way of life.”

Joseph Davis, Potterville.  Earned two varsity letters in football and baseball.  Received special mention AP all-state and first team Detroit Free Press all-state, Class C all-area, and first team all-CMAC in football.  Captain of football team senior year.  Honorable mention all-CMAC and academic all-state baseball.  Member of Student Council four years, sophomore and junior Vice President and senior President.  National Honor Society member junior and senior year.  Peer Assistance Leaders four years.  Class vice president four years.  Participant with youth group four years, March of Dimes Walk three years and Youth Advisory Council four years.  Plans to attend Kalamazoo College, Notre Dame or Beloit to study communications/broadcasting journalism.  

Essay Quote - “The choice is simple.  Good sportsmanship, or bad sportsmanship.  Each brings about a certain degree of respect (high or none), helps determine reputations (good or bad), and even contributes to success (or lack thereof).”

Shannon Dibble, Charlevoix.  Earned three varsity letters in basketball and track.  Basketball honors include team 101% Award, Coach’s Award and first team all-conference as a senior.  Also played on Class C MHSAA Finalist in 2004.  All-conference and all-region track awards.  Track qualifier for Lower Peninsula MHSAA Finals.  3,200-meter relay school record holder.  National Honor Society member junior and senior year serving as president senior year.  Yearbook editor junior and senior year.  Spanish club member for four years.  Volunteer for Adopt-A-Highway, Charlevoix Humane Society and many school functions.  Plans to major in pre-medicine at the University of Michigan or Duke University.

Essay Quote - “Sportsmanship is a commitment to one’s self, one’s teammates, one’s community, and one’s opponents.  It is out of this fundamental respect that community pride stems.  As athletes, we are role models – a privilege that should never be taken lightly.”

Nathan Gonzalez, Springport.  Awarded four varsity letters in wrestling, three in football and two in baseball.  Received all-state wrestling individual honors freshman, sophomore and junior year.  Named Jackson County Student Athlete of the Year junior year.  Jackson Citizen Patriot all-area team freshman, sophomore and junior years.  Big 8 academic all-conference junior and senior year.  Member of Future Farmers of America four years, Project Red four years, USA Wrestling Youth Program four years and Peer Mentor one year.  Participated in the Spartan Sparkle four years, FFA Labor Auction four years and Family Farm Festival one year.  Will attend Michigan State University to study electrical technology.

Essay Quote  - “Through my participation in football, wrestling, and baseball, I learned the value of working hard to meet a goal, the importance of a “team first” attitude, and the significance of sportsmanship.  I have been blessed to have sportsmanship modeled by my parents, coaches, and teammates.”

Megan Hooper, Traverse City St.  Francis.  Earned three varsity letters in softball and two varsity letters in basketball.  Basketball and softball captain senior year.  Academic Honors freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year.  Student Council secretary sophomore, junior, and senior years.  Key Club member four years secretary junior and senior year.  National Honor Society member junior and senior year.  Praise Team member and co-founder sophomore, junior, and senior year.  Mission trip participant junior year.  GLAD meals soup kitchen volunteer four years.  Organizer of Diocese of Gaylord Youth Rally.  Plans on majoring in Biology or Theology at Saint Mary’s of Notre Dame.

Essay Quote  – “I will never forget how much the support and prayers of my opponents meant to me, my teammates, and my community.  Teaching sportsmanship is more than teaching athletes how to act in a high school game.  Teaching sportsmanship is teaching athletes how to act in the game of life.”

Christopher Paul Momont, Iron Mountain.  Earned four varsity letters in cross country, three in swimming and four in track & field.  Voted captain of cross country team senior year.  Upper Peninsula MHSAA Finals qualifier in swimming.  Upper Peninsula MHSAA Finals qualifier in track.  Member of the Key Club junior and senior year.  Varsity Club member two years.  Industrial Arts Club three years.  Student council one year.  Part of the Youth Advisory Committee at the Dickinson Area Community Foundation for four years, chairman junior and senior year.  Received the Volunteer Achievement Award.  Festival of the Arts People’s Choice Award junior and senior year.  Plans to attend the University of Michigan or Michigan Technological University to study biomedical engineering.

Essay Quote  - “Being an athlete is about much more than winning.  It is about setting an example, setting the mood, and laying a foundation for one’s own attitude. Statistics may show how athletic a competitor is, but it is sportsmanship that defines the caliber of an athlete.”

Ben Thayer, Kalamazoo Hackett.  Received three varsity letters in football and basketball, one in track and baseball.  Captain of football team senior year.  Awarded first team all-conference and team MVP in football senior year.  Stanley E.  Rubleski Award for Junior Male Outstanding Student Athlete, captain, MVP and first team all-conference basketball junior year.  Won Coach’s Award in track and basketball sophomore year.  Member of Spanish Club all four years, treasurer senior year.  National Honor Society member three years, president senior year.  Student Council treasurer senior year.  Varsity Club/Student Athletic Advisory Board three years. Participated as Hackett Youth football announcer/clean-up crew four years.  Group leader for the Hackett Sports Clinics three years.  St. Augustine Cathedral Church Volunteer four years.  Currently undecided on choice of school but plans to study engineering or architecture.

Essay Quote - “Sportsmanship plays a role in our future as well.  How we act in these situations as adolescents will soon be how we act as young adults and professionals.  The way you carry yourself in attitude and confidence in high school is commonly the same way in the rest of your life.”

Other Class C girls finalists for the Scholar-Athlete Award were:   Amy Vanni, Bloomfield Hills Academy of the Sacred Heart; Katherine Northrup, Decatur; Libby Veldkamp, Grandville Calvin Christian;
Alie Church, Harbor Springs; Alicia Simmons, Reading; Bridget Sobek, Saginaw Nouvel; Kara Bensley, Schoolcraft; Jessica  Solgat, Vassar; and Natalie Niblock, White Pigeon.

Other Class C boys finalists for the Scholar-Athlete Award were:  Nathaniel Sotuyo, Charlevoix;
Eric Glynn, Dansville; Jared Kapa, Mayville;  Jonathan Birchmeier, New Lothrop; Matthew Pung, Pewamo-Westphalia; Nicholas Pavloski, Rudyard; Rahul Kamalapurkar, Sandusky; and Aaron Kuhl, Unionville Sebewaing.

Overviews of the scholarship recipients of the Class D Scholar-Athlete Award follow. A quote from each recipient's essay is also included:

MacKenzie James Donohue, Fulton-Middleton.  Four-year varsity letterwinner in football and baseball and two-year varsity letterwinner in basketball.  League honorable mention basketball in 2005.  Baseball league, district, and regional champions in 2005.  First team Academic all-area and all-region in 2005.  League honorable mention baseball 2005.  Football captain in 2005.  First team league defensive back as a sophomore, junior and senior.  Lansing State Journal all-area team.  Class D football all-state in 2005.  National Honor Society member three years.  National Science Society member two years.  Student council member junior year.  Class float-prom committee three years.  Volunteers with St. Martin’s youth group, and other summer youth camp programs.  Plans to attend Michigan State University to major in history.

Essay Quote  – “Helping a teammate or opposing teammate up on the field or on the court is a good display of sportsmanship.  I have seen this happening more this past football season.  I know the feeling of needing a helping hand, and I am grateful the opposing team member was willing to offer one.”

Timothy Erdmann, Auburn Hills Oakland Christian.  Earned three varsity letters in track, two in cross country, one in soccer and baseball.  All-conference and all-region awards in cross country.  Soccer team reached MHSAA Semifinals in 2002.  National Honor Society member junior and senior year.  Class secretary and treasurer freshman and sophomore year.  Four-year marching and pep band member.  Robotics Rookie award at Detroit regional junior and senior year.  Volunteers for church ministries including mission trips, class service projects, and Project LEAD (Leadership Education And Development).  Plans on attending the University of Michigan to study aerospace engineering. 

Essay Quote  – “Teams that practice good sportsmanship will always show it.  The encouragement and support that comes along with sportsmanship produces strong bonds between the players, coaches, and fans.”

Anna Leutheuser, Hillsdale Academy.  Four-year varsity letterwinner in basketball, volleyball, and track & field.  Academic all-state for track.  MHSAA Lower Peninsula Division 4 runner-up in discus in 2005.  Three-time team and conference MVP for Track and Field.  First team all-conference and Coach’s Award for basketball and volleyball.  Four-year National Honor Society member serving as secretary junior year and president senior year.  Student council member freshman and sophomore year serving as secretary sophomore year.  Four-year choir member.  Volunteers for walk for life, local crisis pregnancy center, and as a church pianist.  Plans to attend Hillsdale College and study history and political science. 

Essay Quote  – “Athletics are at their highest level if a spirit of sportsmanship prevails; the athletes perform better, the coaches contribute more, and the fans are more animated and encouraging.  Sportsmanship ennobles any contest, and therefore must be welcomed, encouraged, and expected.”

Katelyn Michell, Marion.  Four-year varsity letterwinner in basketball and track and field and three-year letterwinner in volleyball and softball.  Awarded all-conference basketball all four years.  All-conference volleyball and softball in 2005.  All-conference track 2004, 2005.  Track and field MHSAA Regional champion 2004 and 2005.  All-state basketball 2004.  All-state track 2005.  Academic all-state basketball in 2004 and track in 2005.  Two year member National Honor Society, vice president senior year.  Four-year student council member including president senior year.  Students Against Drunk Driving member sophomore, junior, senior years.  Math Team member freshman year.  2005 Homecoming Queen.  Plans to continue her education at Grand Valley State University to study elementary education.

Essay Quote – “It is easy to be a good sport when things are going well, but true character is revealed when you are unable to control certain aspects and outcomes of the game on and off the playing field.  Those who display good sportsmanship show it not only during good times but during times of adversity.”

Other Class D girls finalists for the Scholar-Athlete Award were:  Alyssa Slocum, Alanson Littlefield
Elizabeth Wielfaert, Britton-Macon; Lauren Izzard, Cedarville; Karin Diebld, Ellsworth; Whitney VanCamp, North Adams-Jerome; and Ashlee Lechowicz, Pellston.

Other Class C boys finalists for the Scholar-Athlete Award were:  Casey Seppanen, Eben Junction Superior Central; Joshua Bodell, Frankfort; Casey Stokes, Marion; James Taipaulus, North Adams-Jerome; Tyler Depuydt, Rock Mid Peninsula; and Kyle Robinson, Watersmeet.

Students applying for the Scholar-Athlete Award must be carrying at least a 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale) grade-point average, and have previously won a letter in a varsity sport in which the Michigan High School Athletic Association sponsors a postseason tournament. Other requirements for the applicants were to show active participation in other school and community activities and produce an essay on the importance of sportsmanship in educational athletics.

Honorees previously announced in Class A were: Asli Bashir, Ann Arbor Huron; Sarah Brewer, Wayland Union; Christine Brynaert, Romeo; Kelsey Ann Caverly, East Detroit; David Fuller, Temperance Bedford; Peter E. Loy, Warren DeLaSalle; Christopher Michaud, Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern; Alex Mihelick, Plymouth; Margaret Scholtes, Grosse Pointe South; Dana Schweitzer, Grosse Pointe South; John R. Waynick, Troy Athens; Callie Youngman, Cadillac; and Eric Zhao, Novi.

Previously announced scholarship recipients in Class B are: Bryan Andrew Berger, Marshall; Jessica Frankowski, Roscommon; Marissa Jane Ingle, Delton Kellogg; Nicholaus Arthur Josey, Flint Powers Catholic; Kristen Lazaroff, Jackson Lumen Christi; Jacob Stewart, Chesaning Union; Rick Storm, Niles; and Elizabeth Louise Tepe, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood. 

Farm Bureau Insurance, one of Michigan's major insurers, has a statewide force of 350 agents serving more than 380,000 Michigan policyholders. Besides providing life, home auto, farm, business and retirement insurance, the company also sponsors lifesaving, real-time Doppler weather tracking systems in several Michigan communities.
The MHSAA is a private, not-for-profit corporation of voluntary membership by over 1,800 public and private senior high schools and junior high/middle schools which exists to develop common rules for athletic eligibility and competition.  No government funds or tax dollars support the MHSAA, which was the first such association nationally to not accept membership dues or tournament entry fees from schools.  Member schools which enforce these rules are permitted to participate in MHSAA tournaments, which attract approximately 1.6 million spectators each year.


MEDIA ADVISORY -- A complete list of scholarship nominees and finalists for the Scholar-Athlete Award can be found by clicking on the Recognition link on the home page of the MHSAA Web Site, and then clicking on Scholar-Athlete Award.  Information about scholarship recipients will be posted on the MHSAA Web Site according to the schedule listed in this release, and media in the markets of the scholarship recipients will be notified by fax the day before the public announcement.  For more information about Farm Bureau Insurance, contact Luke Schafer, Public Relations Manager, at 517.323.7000.  You can download the MHSAA’s Scholar-Athlete Award logo from the MHSAA Web Site – click on Forms & Graphics off the home page.


Farm Bureau Insurance and MEEMIC Insurance are year-round MHSAA Corporate Partners


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