BSC names 2015 Larry D. Striplin Athletes of the Year at annual Athletic Awards Banquet

BSC's 2015 award winners (L to R): Johnny Johnson Most Inspirational Senior Award-Katie O'Bar (Volleyball); BSC Man of the Year-Jacob Mayfield (Baseball); BSC Woman of the Year-Bethany Fronk (Softball); Male Athlete of the Year-Blake Stevens (Baseball); Female Athlete of the Year-Tiarra Goode (Track and Field); Female Newcomer of the Year-Carlee Petro (Women's Tennis); Male Newcomer of the Year-Wil Barton (Swimming and Diving)
BSC's 2015 award winners (L to R): Johnny Johnson Most Inspirational Senior Award-Katie O'Bar (Volleyball); BSC Man of the Year-Jacob Mayfield (Baseball); BSC Woman of the Year-Bethany Fronk (Softball); Male Athlete of the Year-Blake Stevens (Baseball); Female Athlete of the Year-Tiarra Goode (Track and Field); Female Newcomer of the Year-Carlee Petro (Women's Tennis); Male Newcomer of the Year-Wil Barton (Swimming and Diving)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—At its annual Athletic Awards Banquet Wednesday evening in the Norton Great Hall, Birmingham-Southern College named its Larry Striplin Athletes of the Year as well as several other award winners for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Senior sprinter and hurdler Tiarra Goode was named Female Athlete of the Year, and senior pitcher Blake Stevens was named Male Athlete of the Year.

Goode had a stellar senior campaign, returning to the track after taking a medical redshirt last season, winning four 2015 Southern Athletic Association individual crowns. She clocked the fastest time in the nation in the 200-meter dash (24.21 seconds), was fourth in the nation in the 100-meter dash (11.95 seconds), and 13th in the 100-meter hurdles (14.59). Goode was also a leg of the winning 4x100-meter relay team, which was third in the nation (47.31 seconds).

Stevens started the season as a D3baseball.com Preseason All-American and went on to become a contender for post-season All-American honors as well (which have not been announced yet). He was named SAA Pitcher of the Year for the second straight season, earning First-Team All-Conference honors, going 8-2 on the mound. Stevens ranks fourth in the nation with 97 strikeouts, 10th with a 0.86 WHIP (walks plus hits per inning pitched), and 11th in the nation with his 1.14 ERA. He helped lead the Panthers to their second-straight SAA regular season title and a national ranking as high as fourth in the nation this season.

BSC's Female Newcomer of the Year is women's tennis player Carlee Petro, and the Male Newcomer of the Year is swimmer Wil Barton.

Petro was named SAA Newcomer of the Year after making an immediate impact on the program as a freshman, playing at both No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles all season long. She went 10-1 in singles action and 10-4 in doubles, also earning First-Team All-Conference accolades.

Barton was a key member of the SAA champion men's swimming and diving team this past winter as a freshman, winning gold in the 400-yard medley relay, 400-yard freestyle relay, and 800-yard freestyle relay. He qualified for the NCAA Championship in the 500-yard freestyle, 200-yard medley relay, 200-yard freestyle relay, 800-yard freestyle relay, 200-yard backstroke, and 400-yard freestyle relay, and helped the Panthers place eight in the nation in the 800 free, earning All-American honors.

Ben Sinclair

A new award was created this season, the Ben Sinclair Teammate of the Year Award, honoring men's lacrosse freshman Ben Sinclair who tragically passed away on April 25, 2015. Sinclair was the recipient of the inaugural award, which was presented to Head Coach Casey Kear and the 2015 men's lacrosse captains, and the award will be given annually to an athlete whose peers dub him or her a consummate teammate.

The Johnny Johnson Most Inspirational Senior Student-Athlete Award is named for the late Vice President for Business and Finance at Birmingham-Southern College, who died suddenly from a heart ailment in 2001. Johnson was an avid supporter of BSC athletics. The 2015 recipients of the Johnny Johnson Awards were volleyball's Katie O'Bar and football's Michael Ferguson.

BSC also named its Man and Woman of the Year, baseball catcher Jacob Mayfield and softball pitcher Bethany Fronk. BSC's selections will go on to be in the running for SAA Man and Woman of the Year. The nominees must be seniors with no remaining eligibility, and must have earned First-Team All-Conference honors at some point during their career. The nominees must also be a member of the SAA Academic Honor Roll. Last year's BSC Woman of the Year, Elizabeth Bromirski Reece, a dual-sport athlete in women's basketball and track and field, was selected as SAA Woman of the Year.

The 2015 SAA Championship Men's Swimming and Diving team, as well as the 2015 SAA regular season champion baseball team, were named BSC's Teams of the Year.

BSC's Athlete of the Year awards were named in honor of late benefactor Larry D. Striplin, who passed away in 2012 at the age of 82. He was a 1952 graduate of Birmingham-Southern and is a member of the BSC Sports Hall of Fame. Striplin served for many years on the Birmingham-Southern Board of Trustees and was Chairman of the Athletic Affairs Committee of the Board. The BSC baseball field, Striplin Field, is named in his honor, as well as the Larry D. Striplin, Jr. Physical Fitness and Recreation Center on the BSC campus.

2015 BSC Athletic Award Winners
Male Athlete of the Year—Blake Stevens, Baseball
Female Athlete of the Year—Tiarra Goode, Track and Field
Male Newcomer of the Year—Wil Barton, Swimming and Diving
Female Newcomer of the Year—Carlee Petro, Women's Tennis
Ben Sinclair Teammate of the Year—Ben Sinclair, Men's Lacrosse
Johnny Johnson Most Inspirational Senior Student-Athlete Award—Katie O'Bar (Volleyball), Michael Ferguson (Football)
BSC Woman of the Year—Bethany Fronk, Softball
BSC Man of the Year—Jacob Mayfield, Baseball
Teams of the Year—Men's Swimming and Diving, Baseball