SAN ANTONIO — The UTSA Athletics Department held its annual awards banquet on Thursday night at Pedrotti’s North Wind Ranch, honoring student-athletes for their athletic and academic success during the 2011-12 year.
Former San Antonio Spurs great Bruce Bowen was the special guest and he gave a 15-minute speech to the crowd of about 500, discussing UTSA’s move to the Western Athletic Conference and motivating coaches and student-athletes to be opportunistic in order to be successful in the new league. The eight-time All-NBA Defensive Team honoree took several classes at UTSA before earning his undergraduate degree with his alma mater, Cal State Fullerton, in 2006.
Director of Athletics Lynn Hickey also addressed the group, highlighting the impressive accomplishments of the current senior class, which includes two Southland Conference Commissioner’s Cups, a pair of Southland Conference All Sports trophies, 17 conference championships, eight NCAA postseason appearances, 13 All-Americans and 11 Southland Conference Student-Athletes of the Year during the past five seasons.
UTSA honored four student-athletes with its top awards.
Kelsey Jewasko, a senior on the volleyball team, and Jeromie Hill, a sophomore on the men’s basketball squad, were named the Will & Mary Hathaway Academic Athletes of the Year. Shannon Jungman (women’s golf) and Mark Waters (football) were awarded the Pat Clynes Letterman’s Awards as the top senior athletes.
The University Life Award for Outstanding Male and Female Athletes will be named after the completion of the 2011-12 academic year and introduced during a football game this fall.
The Director’s Cup for the student-athlete from each team who completed the most community service hours throughout the school year also was recognized with the following winners: Baseball — P.D. McIntyre; Women’s Basketball — Ashley Gardner; Men’s Basketball — Tyler Wood; Women’s Cross Country — Courtney Nelson; Men’s Cross Country — Albert Cardenas; Football — Mark Waters; Women’s Golf — Bruna Spengler; Men’s Golf — Xabier Basanez; Soccer — Jody Leroy; Women’s Tennis — Vivian Carrillo; Men’s Tennis — Pedro Zanotelli; Women’s Track & Field — Taelor Wilson; Men’s Track & Field — Cole Reveal; Volleyball — Dempsey Thornton.