Organizers for Mobile’s annual college bowl game recently hosted its Community Awards Banquet. The event honors this year’s art contest winners and scholarship recipients.
The gridiron showdown, which now has LendingTree serving as its title sponsor, invites students from Mobile and Baldwin counties to enter each year for a chance to earn a cash prize for their school’s art program. This year’s theme was “The Port City: the History, the Culture and the Charm.”
The contest received approximately 100 entries. Judges from the Eastern Shore Art Center and the Mobile Museum of Art selected the finalists.
Since 2007, the winning artwork has been chosen for the front cover of the bowl program. This year’s honor goes to Catherine Chung of Davidson High School.
“Miss Chung has a lot of talent and we are honored to have her painting as this year’s program cover,” John T. Clark, Director of Marketing and Ticket Operations for the bowl game, told Lagniappe.
The bowl game has awarded nearly $26,000 to local schools’ art programs since the contest’s inception. The finalists of this year’s art contest were:
Grades 6 to 8: 1) Makayla Ransom, Dunbar Magnet School; 2) Gianna Estrada, St. Paul’s Episcopal School; 3) Florencia Carcamo Dalzotto, Causey Middle School;
Grades 9 to 10: 1) Catherine Chung, Davidson; 2) Amelia Herron, St. Paul’s; 3) Cassidy Bullock, Theodore High School;
Grades 11 to 12: 1) Logan Gates, Theodore; 2) Claire Lee, St. Paul’s; 3) Catherine Costello, St. Paul’s.
In addition, the art programs for the winning schools received the following: $100 to Causey, $300 to Davidson, $300 to Dunbar, $400 to Theodore and $700 to St. Paul’s.
The bowl scholarships are awarded annually through the Mobile Alabama Bowl and C Spire 1st & 10 Club’s Student of the Month program. Students of the Month and scholarship recipients were selected based on their leadership, integrity, concern for others and community service.
Scholarship winners were Conner Shepard of Citronelle High School, Heriberto Leal of Foley High School, Chrystopher Moultrie of McGill-Toolen Catholic High School, Z’Kia Campbell of B.C. Rain High School, Haley Vaughan of Alma Bryant High School and Anna Sweet of Saraland High School.
The Gus Shopoff Memorial and the John Gottfried Memorial scholarships are awarded annually to Team Focus members based on academic merit, excellence in leadership and involvement in the community and outreach program. The goal of Team Focus has been to provide young males (ages 10 to 18) who do not have a father figure in their life with leadership skills, guidance, Godly values and a continual relationship with a mentor.
The Gus Shopoff Memorial Scholarship winner was Von Agee of Mobile Christian School. The John Gottfried Memorial Scholarship went to James Burkholder of Gallion, Ohio.
Played at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, the 21st annual LendingTree Bowl will take place Monday, January 6. The game, which will be shown on ESPN at 6:30 p.m., will feature teams from the Mid-American and Sun Belt conferences.
“We are pleased and proud to welcome LendingTree as the title sponsor for this year’s bowl game,” Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson said. “College football is a cherished tradition in Mobile, and we are grateful to the team at LendingTree and the bowl organizers for carrying that tradition forward.”
Teams are set to arrive in Mobile on January 2 for LendingTree Bowl Week, a series of events leading up to the game. For more information about the game, bowl events or ticket information, visit lendingtree.com, or call 251-635-0011.
** The Sun Belt Conference (SBC) announced the University of South Alabama (USA) women’s soccer program had nine players named to its all-conference teams. The Jaguars swept the individual awards, including a coach of the year honor for Richard Moodie.
Senior Briana Morris was the player of the year and offensive player of the year, senior Justice Stanford was the defensive player of the year, graduate Athanasia Moraitou was the newcomer of the year and Gracie Wilson was the freshman of the year.
Five Jags — Morris, Moraitou, Wilson, Stanford and sophomore Tilly Wilkes — were placed on the first team, tying a school mark. The nine overall are a USA record. Graduate Tabea Griss, sophomores Moa Öhman and Brenna McPartlan, and freshman Leandra Flury were voted to the second-team list.
USA won the league’s regular-season title for the fifth time in six years and the SBC tournament for the sixth time in seven tries. The season came to an end following a 2-0 loss to sixth-ranked Florida State in the NCAA playoffs. USA finishes at 16-4-2.
** The University of Mobile men’s soccer team captured the Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) regular-season title. The SSAC announced the Rams’ Daniel Whelan was its coach of the year.
Senior Ellis Roberts was selected the defensive player of the year as well as to the SSAC all-conference first team. Joining him on the first team were junior forward Ronaldo Fortune, sophomore midfielders Yazid Omri and Alec McKinley, plus senior goalkeeper Michael Samnik. On the second team were senior forward Lukas Burt, senior defender Sammy Chillman and junior forward Victor Pimentel.
Along with the individual awards, Mobile earned the SSAC Team Sportsmanship Award for showing the most class and sportsmanship before, during and after matches played throughout the season. Along with this award, Brantton Greene was named to represent Mobile on the Musco Lighting Champions of Character team.
The Rams lost to William Carey College in the SSAC tournament final 4-2 on penalty kicks after finishing two overtimes with no goals. Mobile (16-1-2) is the top seed in the Fort Wayne, Indiana, bracket of the NAIA playoffs.
** Five SSAC teams earned bids to the NAIA Women’s Soccer National Championship. Mobile (9-6-2) will host the championships in Orange Beach Dec. 2 to 7. The Rams will play the winner of the Hattiesburg bracket, which is led by top overall seed William Carey.
Seniors on the first-team, all-SSAC roster for the Rams were forward Cheyne Bush and defender Heidi Giles. On the second-team list were senior defender Abigail Bush, sophomore midfielder Nadia Soderburg and sophomore goalkeeper Antonia Bauer. On the all-freshman squad were midfielder Anakah Madril, forward Destiny Hammac and midfielder Malika Verma.
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