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Athletics Celebrates Success at 8th Annual FLAMESPY Award Show

April 30, 2019  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Liberty Athletics celebrated another highly successful year of academics, athletics and community service at the eighth annual FLAMESPY Award show, Monday evening.

The elegant evening opened with a reception-style event for all of Liberty's student-athletes, coaches, administrators and special invited guests in the Montview Student Union Alumni Ballroom.

The glitz and glamour of the evening continued when the invitees start to make their way into the Center for Music and the Worshiping Arts Concert Hall.

Once inside the Concert Hall, guests were treated to a 60-minute show, hosted by Alan York, "Voice of the Flames", and Liberty's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee where a total of 17 awards presented throughout the night.

AD – Commitment to Excellence Award
Award Description: Given to a senior student-athlete with a cumulative grade point average of a 4.0.
Note: All listed were award winners – no nominees for this category.
• Michael Chorowicz - Football
• Ruben Garcia Arnaza - Men's Soccer
• Alicia Finnigan – Women's Swimming & Diving
• Siani Null – Women's Swimming & Diving
• Kelly Shaffer - Track & Field

Darius Dixon Service Award
Award Description: Given annually to a student-athlete or team who gives freely and unselfishly of their time to community activities, they inspire others and act as a role model as well as improve the lives of others through voluntary giving. The award is named in honor of former track & field student-athlete Darius Dixon, who was committed to community service before he tragically passed away on Dec. 7, 2013.
• Women's Lacrosse

Support Staff of the Year Award
Award Description: Presented annually to a member of the athletics department staff that athletics could not do without.
• Henry Barrera - Men's Basketball Director of Performance
• Steven Gonzalez - Associate Athletics Communications Director (Men's Basketball/Women's Soccer)
• Heather LaFon - Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance. Compliance Contact
• Chelsea Mangino- Director of Basketball Operations
• Courtney Hall - Women's Olympic Sports Director of Operations Field Hockey, Lacrosse and Women's Soccer
• Aaron Schreiner-  Senior Associate Athletic Trainer
• Kasey McAloon- Director of Fan Experience and Promotions (Winner)

Perseverance of Job
Award Description: Given to a student-athlete who has triumphed and overcome obstacles as well as difficulties over their Liberty University athletics career or in recent months.
Evan Brabrand (Baseball) (Winner)
• Kierra Johnson-Graham (Women's Basketball)
• Kendra Jones (Field Hockey)
• Kieran Vincent (Men's Golf)

Strength & Conditioning Athlete of the Year
Award Description: The Strength & Conditioning Athlete of the Year Award recognizes one male and one female whose athletic accomplishments, in the opinion of their strength coach, reflect the dedication to the overall strength training and conditioning program.
Note: All listed were award winners – no nominees for this category.
• Zach Farquhar - Men's Basketball
• Margaret Latchford - Volleyball

Dr. Jerry Falwell Leadership Award (Female and Male Award Winners)
Award Description: Presented annually to one male and one female who has exemplified Dr. Falwell's vision through leadership, commitment to academics, athletic talent and service to others.
Note: All listed were award winners – no nominees for this category.
• Kylie Polsgrove - Women's Track & Field
• Tyler Galazin - Baseball

Best Clutch Performance
Award Description: Given to the best or most significant performance by a student-athlete in a game, match or meet.
• Julia DiMartino (Softball) vs. South Carolina (May 19, 2018)
• Alivia Klopp (Field Hockey) vs. Virginia (Sept. 16, 2018)
• Georgie Pacheco-Ortiz (Men's Basketball) vs. Lipscomb (March 10, 2019) (Winner)
• Devon Sipala (Women's Soccer) vs. North Florida (Oct. 21, 2018)

Best Championship Performance Award
Award Description: Given to the best or most significant performance in a championship/postseason match, series or tournament.
• Tanner Ealum at ECAC Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships (March 1-3, 2019)
• Caleb Homesley (Men's Basketball) vs. Mississippi State at the NCAA Tournament  (March 22, 2019) (Winner)
• Softball at Big South Championship (May 10-12, 2018) and NCAA Regional (May 18-20, 2018)
• Swimming & Diving at the CCSA Swimming & Diving Championships (Feb. 20-23, 2019)

Most Outstanding Team Award
Award Description: Given to the best team based on their record, conference championship wins and national rankings.
• Men's Golf
• Men's Basketball (Winner)
• Men's & Women's Track & Field
• Softball

Play of the Year Award
Award Description: Given for the singe play or performance that made the most impact on a game or season.
• Antonio Gandy-Golden (Football) vs. New Mexico (Sept. 29, 2018)
• Keenan Gumbs (Men's Basketball) vs. Florida Gulf Coast (Feb. 9, 2019)
• Ayden Karraker (Baseball) vs. Wake Forest (Feb. 19, 2019) (Winner)
• Brianna McCaffrey (Women's Lacrosse) vs. Kennesaw State (March 16, 2019)

Fan Voted Play of the Year
Award Description: Given to the top play of the year, as voted upon by members of Flames Nation. 
• B.J. Farrow (Football) vs. Troy (Oct. 13, 2018)
• Tyler Galazin (Baseball) vs. Radford (May 24, 2018)
• Caleb Homesley (Men's Basketball) vs. Kennesaw State (Feb. 26, 2019)
• Kaitlin McFarland (Softball) vs. Hofstra (May 18, 2019) (Winner)
• Kevin Mendoza (Men's Soccer) vs. Jacksonville (Oct. 20, 2018)

Breakthrough Athlete of the Year Award
Award Description: Given to the student-athlete who made the most impact or significant breakthrough during their season.
• Frankie Hickson (Football) (Winner)
• Bridgette Rettstatt (Women's Basketball)
• Kalani Soli (Women's Tennis)
• Kainah Williams (Volleyball)

Female Newcomer of the Year Award
Award Description: Given to the female student-athlete who was dedicated, positive, hard-working and made an immediate impact on their program during their first year of competition at Liberty (freshman, redshirt freshman or transfer student-athlete).
• Madison Ellis (Women's Soccer)
• Taylen Langin (Women's Track & Field)
• Emily Lytle (Women's Basketball) (Winner)
• Gianni Pitto (Women's Swimming & Diving)

Male Newcomer of the Year Award
Award Description: Given to the male student-athlete who was dedicated, positive, hard-working and made an immediate impact on their program during their first year of competition at Liberty (freshman, redshirt freshman or transfer student-athlete).
• Nicaise Muamba (Men's Tennis) (Winner)
• Jose Ballivian (Men's Track & Field)
• Darius McGhee (Men's Basketball)
• Austin Lewis (Football)

Best Female Athlete of the Year Award
Award Description: Presented to an individual female student-athlete based on their yearly stats and athletics accolades.
• Amber Bishop (softball)
• Brianna McCaffrey (Women's Lacrosse)
• Casey Goodwin (volleyball)
• Agueda Moroni (Field Hockey) Winner)

Best Male Athlete of the Year Award
Award Description: Presented to an individual male student-athlete based on their yearly stats and athletics accolades.
• Evan Brabrand (Baseball)
• Ervin Chang (Men's Golf)
• Caleb Homesley (Men's Basketball)
• Alejandro Perlaza Zapata (Men's Track & Field) (Winner)

Rock Royer/Mac Rivera Award
Award Description: In 1975, the Rock Royer/Mac Rivera Award was established to honor the top graduating senior student-athlete at Liberty University who best exemplifies the standards and lives of both of these great Christian men. Rock Royer was Liberty's first football coach in 1973.  Mac Rivera was a member of Liberty's basketball team from 1972 until 1975. Both Rock Royer and Mac Rivera tragically died at a young age. This award encompasses more than just athletic ability. It recognizes the Liberty University graduating senior student-athlete who has maintained an exemplary testimony on the playing field, in the classroom and among the student body.
• Lovell Cabbil Jr., Men's Basketball
• Tatyana Crowder, Women's Basketball
• Jonathan Embry, Baseball
Alicia Finnigan, Women's Swimming & Diving (Winner)
• Kayla Foster, Women's Lacrosse
• David King, Football
• Margaret Latchford, Volleyball
• Kylie Polsgrove, Women's Track & Field