|Intercollegiate Athletics (4/30/12)
WARNER & LIGHTBODY NAMED ATHLETES OF THE YEAR
Junior Stephanie Warner (Totowa/Passaic Valley) of the Stockton volleyball team received the Female Athlete of the Year award and pitcher John Lightbody (Toms River/TR East) collected the Male Athlete of the Year award as Richard Stockton College held its annual athletic banquet at the Seaview resort yesterday.
Warner racked up a lengthy list of honors after leading Stockton to its fourth straight NJAC volleyball championship in the fall, highlighted by a Second Team All-America nod from the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA). The dominant middle hitter was named NJAC Player of the Year and ECAC Upstate Metro Player of the Year.
Warner also was chosen ACVA All-New York Region, ECAC First Team All-Star and NJAC All-Conference First Team. She led the nation in hitting percentage (.468) and finished second in the NJAC in blocks (0.83 bpg) and sixth in kills (2.48 kpg). Warner was voted NJAC Player of the Week three times during the 2011 season.
Lightbody was recognized for his efforts as Stockton’s closer during the 2011 baseball season. The hard-throwing righty was named to the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Mid-Atlantic Region Third Team and chosen Fireman of the Year by the New Jersey Collegiate Baseball Association (NJCBA).
Lightbody led the NJAC and finished second in the nation with a school-record 13 saves in 2011. He posted 19 strikeouts and a 2.33 ERA in 19.1 innings pitched out of the bullpen to help Stockton to its second consecutive ECAC championship.
Stockton women’s soccer team manager Jackie Adams was presented with the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Unsung Hero Award at the banquet.
Adams’ playing career ended during her sophomore year of high school due to a head injury and a serious car accident, yet she has become a dedicated member of the Stockton women’s soccer program who attends all practices, games and team functions.
Stockton Provost and Executive Vice-President Dr. Harvey Kesselman presented Scholar Athlete certificates to student-athletes with grade point averages above 3.50 and Honor Athlete certificates to those with GPA’s between 3.00-3.49. A total of 146 student-athletes qualified for the academic awards.
Brennen Fitzsimmons (Neptune/Neptune), a four-year letter winner and three-time NJAC all-conference selection in men’s soccer, was the student-athlete speaker at the banquet.
“On behalf of the student-athletes, I want to thank you all for being part of this Stockton Athletics family that has helped shape me and everyone else here into the men and women that we have become and will continue to be,” Fitzsimmons said in his speech.