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McDougal, Frazee Big South Athletes of Year

July 15, 2008
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Josh McDougal (left) and Megan Frazee swept the 2007-08 Big South Male and Female Athlete of the Year awards. (McDougal photo courtesy AP/World Wide Photos)

Josh McDougal (left) and Megan Frazee swept the 2007-08 Big South Male and Female Athlete of the Year awards. (McDougal photo courtesy AP/World Wide Photos)

Liberty senior distance runner Josh McDougal and Lady Flames junior basketball player Megan Frazee have been voted the Big South Conference Male and Female Student-Athletes of the Year for the 2007-08 season by the league's athletics directors, senior woman administrators and sports information directors, it was announced today by the conference office.

Liberty swept the pair of awards for the second time in the nine-year history of the honors. Baseball player Keith Butler and volleyball standout Anthonia Akpama captured the initial conference awards in 2000. The Flames have now won exactly half of the 18 conference male and female athlete of the year honors ever presented.

McDougal (Peru, N.Y.) earned 99 points and 18 first-place votes in receiving the Howard Bagwell Male Student-Athlete of the Year award for the third consecutive year, becoming the first three-time winner of the award. McDougal finished ahead of Coastal Carolina baseball All-American Dock Doyle, who tallied 54 points. High Point basketball All-American Arizona Reid was third in the voting with 53 points and one first-place vote, followed by Gardner-Webb football standout Brian Johnston (40 points, one first-place vote). Radford tennis player Martin Sayer received 25 points to round out the top five male vote-getters.

Frazee (Xenia, Ohio) is the first women's basketball player since Liberty's Katie Feenstra in 2005 to win the Big South Female Student-Athlete of the Year award. She received 69 points and five first-place votes, finishing ahead of Winthrop softball All-American Lisa Kingsmore (55 points, two first-place votes). Charleston Southern track & field All-American Dionne Gibson was third with 54 points (six first-place votes), while Coastal Carolina distance runner Diana Jepchirchir was fourth with 47 points (five first-place votes). Chanticleers' women's soccer player Ashleigh Gunning finished fifth in the voting with 26 points and received one first-place vote.

McDougal won the 2007 NCAA Division I National Cross Country Championship, becoming the Big South's second individual national champion in league history. He also claimed a pair of All-America honors at the 2008 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships, placing fifth at 5,000 meters and sixth at 3,000 meters. He concluded his collegiate career as a 14-time All-American, and in June, became the first-ever four-time winner of the Big South Track & Field Athlete of the Year award.

McDougal recorded an undefeated cross country season, winning all five of his races, and his cross country victories included his third NCAA Southeast Regional championship, his third straight NCAA Pre-Nationals title and his fourth consecutive Big South crown. He became the first Big South runner in history to win the individual cross country championship four straight times.

The Empire State native set Liberty and Big South cross country records at both the 8K (22:56.4) and 10K (29:22.4) distances. He was recognized by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) as the NCAA Division I National Men's Athlete of the Year and Southeast Region Men's Athlete of the Year during the cross country season. McDougal also captured the USTFCCCA Division I Southeast Region Men's Track Athlete of the Year for the indoor track campaign.
Voted the Men's Outstanding Track Performer at the Big South Indoor Track & Field Championships for the third consecutive season, McDougal won Big South indoor titles in the mile and 3,000 meters, and the two championships gave him 17 individual Big South titles for his career. McDougal helped the Flames garner their third straight Big South cross country team title and their 11th consecutive conference indoor track & field crown, during his senior campaign.

Additionally, his 5,000-meter time of 13:45.16 at the Liberty Kickoff ranked No. 2 in the world for the 2007-08 indoor track & field season, while his outdoor 5,000-meter time of 13:37.13 at the Mt. SAC Relays ranked No. 6 on the NCAA year-end performance list.

Frazee was named Big South Women's Basketball Player of the Year and the Big South Women's Basketball Championship MVP. She was a first-team All-Big South selection for the second consecutive time after averaging a career-best and Big South-leading 18.6 points per game, to go along with 9.5 rebounds (second among Big South players) and a career-high 2.7 assists.

Frazee was tabbed the Richmond Times-Dispatch State Women's Basketball Player of the Year and earned her second straight VaSID first-team All-State selection. She also paced the conference and ranked No. 10 nationally with an .878 free throw percentage. One of eight players in the nation to average at least 18.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per outing, Frazee scored in double figures in every game in the 2007-08 season, netted her 1,000th career point during her junior campaign and made the game-winning shot with 0.3 seconds remaining in the Big South title game against Radford.

She was a six-time Big South Player of the Week selection, was the MVP of both the National City Xavier Invitational and UNLV Lady Rebel Christmas Classic and was selected as a second-team ESPN The Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-America honoree.

In March 2000, the Big South Conference Executive Committee voted to create an annual Male and Female Student-Athlete of the Year award, and name the male award in honor of Howard Bagwell, one of the founders of the Big South Conference. The annual nominees consist of the players of the year from each sport for the regular season most recently completed.

Howard Bagwell Male Athlete of the Year
2007-08 Josh McDougal, Liberty (track & field)
2006-07 Josh McDougal, Liberty (track & field)
2005-06 Josh McDougal, Liberty (track & field)

2004-05 Mike Costanzo, Coastal Carolina (baseball)
2003-04 Joseph Ngwenya, Coastal Carolina (soccer)
2002-03 Joseph Ngwenya, Coastal Carolina (soccer)
2001-02 Justin Owens, Coastal Carolina (baseball)
2000-01 Jason Colson, Winthrop (baseball)
1999-00 Keith Butler, Liberty (baseball)

Female Athlete of the Year
2007-08 Megan Frazee, Liberty (basketball)
2006-07 Aruka Felgueroso, Coastal Carolina (golf)
2005-06 Tiffany Evans, Radford (track & field)
2004-05 Katie Feenstra, Liberty (basketball)
2003-04 Katie Feenstra, Liberty (basketball)
2002-03 Amber Campbell, Coastal Carolina (track & field)
2001-02 Heather Sagan, Liberty (track & field)
2000-01 Amber Campbell, Coastal Carolina (track & field)
1999-00 Anthonia Akpama, Liberty (volleyball)