Published On: Fri, May 23rd, 2014
Sports | By

Thompson, Mintz named CHS Athletes of the Year

 

Darius Thompson (left) won the James “Hogeye” Taylor Memorial Athlete of the Year Award and Avery Mintz won the Bertha Saunooke Memorial Athlete of the Year Award at the Cherokee High School Athletic Awards program on Friday, May 23.  (SCOTT MCKIE B.P./One Feather photos)

Darius Thompson (left) won the James “Hogeye” Taylor Memorial Athlete of the Year Award and Avery Mintz won the Bertha Saunooke Memorial Athlete of the Year Award at the Cherokee High School Athletic Awards program on Friday, May 23. (SCOTT MCKIE B.P./One Feather photos)

By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.

ONE FEATHER STAFF

 

Cherokee High School seniors Darius Thompson and Avery Mintz were named the Athletes of the Year at the annual Athletic Awards program held Friday, May 23 at the Chief Joyce Dugan Cultural Arts Center.  Thompson won the James “Hogeye” Taylor Memorial Male Athlete of the Year Award and Mintz won the Bertha Saunooke Memorial Female Athlete of the Year Award.

Thompson was on the Braves varsity boys basketball team that won the Smoky Mountain Conference regular season title, and he was also a stand-out soccer player.  Mintz, who is headed to Lenoir-Rhyne College on a full basketball scholarship, helped lead the Lady Braves varsity girls basketball team to its fourth straight Sectional Championship. She was also a stand-out performer in soccer and track.

Rod Cooper receives a standing ovation as his #45 jersey is retired during Friday’s event.

Rod Cooper receives a standing ovation as his #45 jersey is retired during Friday’s event.

A highlight of the evening was the retiring of two jerseys of former Braves varsity football players.  Rod Cooper, CHS Class of 1990, had his #45 jersey retired along with CHS Class of 2006 alumni Johnathon “JD” Davis, who passed away earlier this year and had his #4 jersey retired.

Cooper, currently waging a courageous battle with Lou Gehrig’s disease, ran for over 2,700 yards in his career as a Braves running back.  His former coach, Mitch Myers, said on Friday night, “I am not sure who the best football player is that I’ve ever coached, but I can say without a doubt who the best running back is, #45, Rod Cooper.”

After leading western North Carolina in rushing his junior and senior years, Cooper entered the U.S. Army upon graduation and served in the Gulf War.  Following his stint in the military, he returned to Cherokee where he joined the Cherokee Police Department and became instrumental in helping literally thousands of Cherokee youth through the D.A.R.E. program.

Davis also excelled in the backfield and amassed a total of 1,803 rushing yards and 3,027 passing yards during his three years on the varsity Braves team.  “Johnathon Davis was a tremendous running back,” said Craig Barker, then-head coach of the Braves.  “He was a tough football player; one of the toughest players I’ve ever been around.”

Shawn Crowe, emcee for the evening, thanked the community and families for their involvement in the programs this past year, “All of you have a part in these athlete’s achievements, especially the parents.”

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A full listing of awards is as follows:

Charlie Stamper Memorial Academic Athlete

Female – Taran Swimmer

Male – Jaylon Lossiah

 

Most Determined Athlete

Barbara Sequoyah Memorial (Female) – Madison Long

Ray Owle Memorial (Male) – Jaron Bradley

 

Vernon Hornbuckle Memorial Christian Athlete

Female – Dre Crowe

Male – Hunter Lambert

 

Noah Powell Memorial Leadership Award

Female – Peri Wildcatt

Male – Tagan Crowe

 

Ray Kinsland Honorarium Best Sportsmanship

Female – Lacey Arch

Male – Silas Reed-Littlejohn

 

Chief John A. Crowe Memorial Most Dedicated Athlete

Female – Kendall Toineeta

Male – Jason McMillan

 

John Davis Memorial Hard Work Award

Female – Bree Stamper

Male – Gabe Crow

 

Peaches Squirrel Honorarium Miss Brave

Taran Swimmer

 

Noland Crowe Honorarium Mr. Brave

Jesse Toineeta

 

Junior Varsity Volleyball

Offensive MVP – Kieran Sequoyah

Defensive MVP – Kristen Driver

Coach’s Award – Alea Shockey

Most Improved – Lucy Reed, Kyleigh Wiggins

 

Varsity Volleyball

Offensive MVP – Kayla Pheasant

Defensive MVP – Taran Swimmer

Coach’s Award – Madison Long

Most Improved – Kelly West

 

Varsity Cheerleading

MVP – Andrea Cedillo

Coach’s Award – Shadow Long

 

Girls Golf

MVP – Ashlyn Spicer

Coach’s Award – Peri Wildcatt

 

Boys Soccer

MVP – Tommy Lossiah

Most Tenacious – E.J. Carroll

Offensive MVP – Raven Frankiewicz

Defensive MVP – Wade Wolfe

Coach’s Award – Kenzie Garcia

Most Improved – Davis Littlejohn

Outstanding Leader – Darius Thompson (All-Conference)

 

Varsity Cross Country

Male MVP – Brock Powell

Female MVP – Kendall Toineeta

Coach’s Award Female – LeLe Lossiah

Coach’s Award Male – Gabe Crow

 

Junior Varsity Football

Offensive MVP – Tye Mintz

Defensive MVP – Will Davis

Coach’s Award – Jay Swimmer

Best Back – Isiah Evans

Hardest Hitter – Steve Swayney

 

Varsity Football

Offensive MVP – Brandon Buchanan

Defensive MVP – Kennan Panther

Coach’s Award – Jason McMillan

Lineman – Silas Reed-Littlejohn

All-Conference – Derrick Ledford

 

Junior Varsity Girls Basketball

Offensive MVP – Kyleigh Wiggins

Defensive MVP – Alyssa Land

Coach’s Award – Kendra Panther

 

Junior Varsity Boys Basketball

Offensive MVP – Steven Straughan

Defensive MVP – Brock Powell

Coach’s Award – Logan Teesateskie

 

Varsity Girls Basketball

Offensive MVP – Avery Mintz

Defensive MVP – Kendall Toineeta

Coach’s Award – LeLe Lossiah

Most Outstanding Shooter – Bree Stamper

Most Improved – Peri Wildcatt

 

Varsity Boys Basketball

Offensive MVP – Dustin Johnson

Defensive MVP – Jason McMillan

Coach’s Award – Jesse Toineeta

Best Rebounder – Eli Littlejohn

Leadership Award – Darius Thompson

Most Improved – Brandt Sutton

Rookie of the Year – Simon Montelongo

 

Varsity Wrestling

MVP – Jaron Bradley, Levi Swearengin

Coach’s Award – Anthony Toineeta

 

Girls Soccer

Offensive MVP – Taran Swimmer

Defensive MVP – Peri Wildcatt

Coach’s Award – Avery Mintz

Leadership Award – Anna Cline

Most Improved – Bea Grant

Most Tenacious – Samantha Rauch

 

Boys Golf

MVP – Tagan Crowe

Coach’s Award – Derrick Ledford

 

Junior Varsity Softball

Offensive MVP – Megan Howell

Defensive MVP – Shelby Driver

Coach’s Award – Amber Beck

 

Junior Varsity Baseball

Offensive MVP – Menoch Grant

Defensive MVP – Nick Hill

Coach’s Award – Nesta Bradley

 

Varsity Softball

Offensive MVP – Lacey Arch

Defensive MVP – Dre Crowe

Coach’s Award – Kelly West

 

Varsity Baseball

Offensive MVP – Trystan Mullen

Defensive MVP – Jeff Girty

Coach’s Award – Jace Watty

Overall MVP – Jason McMillan

 

Varsity Girls Track/Field

MVP Field – Stevi Sutton

MVP Track – Kendall Toineeta

Coach’s Award – Avery Mintz

 

Varsity Boys Track/Field

MVP Field – Anthony Toineeta

MVP Track – Xan Sadongei, Gabe Crow

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