Congratulations to Melody Johnson and Allison Matthews. Each earned NJCAA Academic All-American honors. Melody earned Exemplary Academic Achievement status with a cumulative GPA of 3.63. Allison earned Superior Academic Achievement with a cumulative GPA of 3.87. Each is an outstanding example of what it means to be student-athletes. All Trail Blazers are very proud of both of you.
The Trail Blazers women's team continues to shine in the classroom. Each year, the women's program averages around a 3.0 cumulative team GPA. The 2013 team is continuing this trend! The women's team posted a cumulative team GPA average of 3.02, narrowly beating out the 2.92 men's team average. More impressively, 91% of the women met NJCAA eligibility standards, 78% earned at least a 2.5 GPA, 52% earned at least a 3.0 GPA and 26% earned at least a 3.5 GPA!
The women's team is made up of character driven athletes who are serious about their academic success. They bought into all aspects of the program's demands. At MCC-Blue River, incoming freshman take part in a weekly college success class taught by an academic advisor. The class contains information about time management, financial aid, study skills, a Q&A session with former players, the creation of a two year plan, three one-on-one meetings and three grade checks throughout the semester. Free tutoring in the academic resource center is also available for all students. The women's team took advantage of all these resources, studied hard and earned great grades!
MCC-Blue River hosted our annual sports awards program on November 22, 2013. Coach Childers took the opportunity to recognize the contribution of all the Trail Blazers, highlighting the unique contributions of each player. Individual awards were given to athletes for achievements on the field and in the classroom. Players recognized were:
Offensive MVP - Remmi Mays and Alli Rice
Defensive MVP - Kennedy Doustou
Leadership Award - Karly Boese
Most Improved Player - Sarah Keck
Trail Blazers Scholar Athlete Award - Jenny Fizell
Coach Childers also handed out certificates of recognition to players whose individual traits helped promote team success. These players were Melody Johnson, Katy Beard, Allie Cacy, Kelsey Howe, Amanda Colville, Allie Matthews and Lindsey Selemaea.
Special recognition was also given to Mike Hendershot, Jenny Steen, Cari Hustedde and Amy Wendleton. Each person provides support to the Trail Blazers program, making the success of the student-athletes possible.
Defender Kennedy Doustou and midfielder Remmi Mayes were selected to the NJCAA Region 16 first team. Kennedy, a freshman from Raymore-Peculiar High School, helped anchor the defense with excellent leadership and athleticism. Remmi, a red shirt freshman from Raytown High School, came back strong from a knee injury in 2012 to post five goals and three assists.
Valeria Espadas, Sarah Keck and Karly Boese earned NJCAA Region 16 second team honors. Both Valeria and Karly are sophomore midfielders. Each finishes their careers by being selected for NJCAA Region 16 recognition both years. Sarah Keck, a freshman from Harrisonville High School, posted four shutouts and four one goal games. Her hard work saw her turn in increasingly solid performances as the season progressed.
Although they fell short in the Region 16 semifinal, the Trail Blazer women's team finished the season strong. They won six out of their last nine games. The highlights of their season were the 1-0 and 3-2 Region 16 wins against St. Charles Community College and MCC-Maple Woods. Those wins improved their Region 16 record to 2-1 and earned them the second seed in the Region 16 Tournament.
The Trail Blazer success was a total team effort. They got great keeper play from freshman Sarah Keck. Sarah started 14 games and recorded a 1.92 goals against average. Additionally, the team has received balanced scoring from:
Allie Rice - 9 goals, 5 assists
Maddy Chappell - 4 goals, 2 assists
Remmi Mays - 5 goals, 3 assists
Val Espadas - 2 goals, 2 assists
Amber Young - 2 goals, 2 assists
Brittany Aubuchon - 2 goals, 1 assist
Kelsey Howe - 2 goals
Jenny Fizell - 1 goal, 2 assists
Kennedy Doustou - 1 goal
Emily Winchel - 1 goal
Although they lost to St. Charles in the Region 16 semifinal, the Trail Blazers will return a strong group of players for 2014. Coach Childers hopes that the strides made during their freshman campaign will yield big rewards in 2014!