SOUTH PRINCE GEORGE, Va. -- Richard Bland College Athletics announced its annual award winners at the 2017 Athletics Banquet on Tuesday night at The Barn Theater. An evening of celebration with the Statesmen marked the successes of our student-athletes achieved during 2016-17. The highlight of the night was Director of Athletics Chuck Moore presenting this year's Male and Female Student-Athlete of the Year awards to sophomores Rodrigo Carvalho/Lisbon, Portugal and Tabby Dabney/Mechanicsville, respectively.
Carvalho started 19 of 21 games for the men's soccer team, the 2016 Region X Tournament Champions. He scored three goals with one assist last fall, totaling seven points. The defender helped lead the Statesmen to a new school record of 12-7-2, including a school record seven shutouts. An Honors Program student, Carvalho attained a 4.0 GPA during the fall semester. Rodrigo will continue his education and soccer career at Knox College in Illinois.
Dabney has started all 41 games for the softball team, currently 22-19 overall, 16-8 in Region X and the number three seed for the upcoming Region X Tournament. She leads the Statesmen and Region X in nearly every offensive stat category, including batting average (.447), hits (63), runs (45) home runs (9), RBIs (50) and slugging percentage (.766) … with new school records for hits, home runs, doubles (16) and RBIs. In the circle, Dabney has posted a 5-6 record with a 4.44 ERA and 44 strikeouts in 71.0 innings. An Honors Program student, as well, she also attained a 4.0 GPA during the fall semester and additionally serves as a Resident Assistant in Patriot Hall. Tabby will continue her education and softball career at the University of Virginia.
Mr. Rodney Ashby, who played for the Region X regular season champion Richard Bland men's basketball team during 1989-90, served as Guest Speaker. He is the Managing Principal at Cornerstone RPO (Recruitment Process Outsourcing) in Richmond, and serves as a TV and radio analyst for VCU men's basketball. Ashby spoke about his experiences as a Statesmen, VCU Ram, professional player in Brazil and Europe (playing against the Globetrotters) and as an assistant coach at VCU. His main message focused on six areas of emphasis important to him for success if life: set goals, game plan, practice and training, measuring results, being coachable and having 100% effort and passion in what you do.
Pastor Gary McReynolds and Marcus Walker were each presented with Service Awards for their respective efforts with Regenesis of Petersburg and its tremendous support of Richard Bland Athletics. Pastor McReynolds is the Founder and President of Regenesis, while Walker, who played for the Region X regular season champion RBC men's basketball team during 1988-89, is the Program Director at Regenesis.
In addition, former softball team member Tiffany Hedge/Fredericksburg was presented the first Statesmen Warrior Award. She played in six games this season before being diagnosed with advanced Hodgkin's Lymphoma in February. A gofundme page, linked below, has been established and all money raised will go toward helping Tiff pay for her medical bills in support of her fight against Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
The complete list of award winners are below, including the Most Valuable Player, Best Defense and Coach's Award winners for all sports at Richard Bland.
Male Student-Athlete of the Year: Rodrigo Carvalho, Men's Soccer
Female Student-Athlete of the Year: Tabby Dabney, Softball
Statesmen Warrior Award: Tiffany Hedge
Service Awards: Pastor Gary McReynolds, Marcus Walker
Most Valuable Players: Gevon Arrington, Jaquan Wooten
Best Defense: Gevon Arrington
Coach's Award: Harrison Mitchell
Coach's Award: Nadira Sharp
Most Valuable Player: Frankie Lin
Coach's Award: Sam Smith
Most Valuable Player: Anna Carole Cole
Coach's Award: Savannah Porter
Most Valuable Player: Denzel Speed
Best Defense: Justin Ennis
Coach's Award: Danny Torres
Most Valuable Player: Brooklynn Bilyard
Highest Batting Average: Tabby Dabney
Coach's Award: Ashley Fritz