Lees-McRae Holds 2008 Fall Sports Banquet

BANNER ELK, N.C. - The Lees-McRae College athletic department held the 2008 Fall Sports Banquet to honor the student-athletes that participated during the fall semester. The teams honored were men's and women's cross country, men's and women's soccer and women's volleyball.


The men's cross country team celebrated its 2008 runner-up finish at the Conference Carolinas Championship race and their fifth place finish at the 2008 NCAA Southeast Regional Race. Craig Simpkins, Conference Carolinas Freshman of the Year, won the Coach's Award, while Jordan Gillespie earned the Most Improved Runner Award. Nate Trimble was awarded the Most Valuable Runner Award.

The women's cross country team ended the 2008 season with a 24th place finish in the NCAA Division II Nationals Race in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. The Lady Bobcats won the Conference Carolinas Championship Race and the NCAA Southeast Regional Race. Kira shoemaker took home the Coach's Award, Gina Valenti earned Most Improved Runner honors, and Carla Swart received the Most Valuable Runner award.

The men's soccer team looked back on a 2008 season in which they repeated as Conference Carolinas regular season and tournament champions. The team also competed in the NCAA tournament making an appearance in their second consecutive NCAA Southeast Regional Tournament. The team advanced through the round of 32 and into the Sweet Sixteen. Honored during the banquet was Lee Squires, who won the team's Most Valuable Player Award; Ignacio Falco, who won the Most Valuable Player Award; Dale Parker, who won the Shope Award; and Adam Burden, who won the Most Valuable Teammate Award.

The women's soccer team looked back on a winning 11-9 season. The team handed out four awards: the Coach's Award went to Aerial Gregston, Most Improved Player Award went to Danielle Lindquist, the Offensive Most Valuable Player was awarded to Vickie Rich and Christine Calvert, and the Defensive Most Valuable Player went Ashley Splawn.

The women's volleyball team looked back on a season where they finished fifth in the Conference Carolinas Tournament and fourth during the regular season. The team handed out three awards. Kell Bodgan earned the Most Valuable Player Award, Lauren Hall earned Most Improved Player Honors, and Katie-Marie Legg won the Coach's Awards.

The following student-athletes were honored with awards during the season.

Conference Carolinas Player of the Week
Nathan Trimble - Men's Cross Country
Carla Swart - Women's Cross Country
Lee Squires - Men's Soccer
Melissa Horn - Women's Soccer

Conference Player of the Year
Lee Squires - Men's Soccer

Conference Freshman of the Year
Craig Simpkins - Men's Cross Country
Megan Epperson - Women's Volleyball

First Team All-Conference
Chris Holstein - Men's Cross Country
Dana Lindholm - Women's Cross Country
Kira Shoemaker - Women's Cross Country
April Harris - Women's Cross Country
Gina Valenti - Women's Cross Country
Dale Parker - Men's Soccer
Lee Squires - Men's Soccer

Second Team All-Conference
Craig Simpkins - Men's Cross Country
Nate Trimble - Men's Cross Country
Cody Hodgins - Men's Cross Country
David Palmer - Men's Soccer
Kyle McGimsey - Men's Soccer
Sean Paradise - Men's Soccer
Whitney Kiser - Women's Volleyball

Third Team All-Conference/All-Conference Honorable Mention
Luke Duffy - Men's Soccer
Nick Robinson - Men's Soccer
Kell Bogdan - Women's Volleyball


Conference Coach of Year
Craig McPhail - Women's Cross Country

Conference Tournament All-Tournament Team
Sean Paradise - Men's Soccer
Lee Squires - Men's Soccer
David Palmer - Men's Soccer
Dale Parker - Men's Soccer
Luke Duffy (MVP) - Men's Soccer

All-Region Honors
Carla Swart - First Team All-Region Women's Cross Country
Kira Shoemaker- First Team All-Region Women's Cross Country
Gina Valenti - First Team All-Region Women's Cross Country
Lee Squires - Daktronics First Team All-Region Men's Soccer
Kell Bodgan -- AVCA All Region Honorable Mention Women's Volleyball


Region Coach of the Year
Craig McPhail - Women's Cross Country

All-American Honors
Lee Squires Daktronics Second Team All-American, Second Team All-American NSCAA - Men's Soccer