April 27, 2005
ATLANTA – Nine Georgia Tech student athletes were honored as Strength and Conditioning all-Americans as announced by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).
The Yellow Jackets honorees include James Butler and Nate Curry for football, Luke Schenscher from men’s basketball, Jayme Gergen (volleyball), Katie Donovan (softball), Andriane Lapsley (track and field), Chan Song (golf), Megan Harpring (women’s basketball) and Jaclyn Keys (swimming and diving).
Curry, who graduated with honors before the 2004 football season and is currently working on a secondary degree, was an academic all-ACC student and named captain of the football team. Curry recently received the Total Person Award, which is presented annually to the male and female senior student-athletes who best exemplify excellence in academics, athletics, leadership and service. He was also honored by the Atlanta Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America at the annual Peach of an Athlete Banquet.
“Throughout all of my years in coaching Nate is the hardest working athlete that I have ever coached. He is a team captain and was voted lifter of the year in 2003 and 2004,” stated Eric Ciano, director of player development. “As well as Nate’s performance on the field, he has graduated in four years and was an academic all-ACC student. Nate’s excellent work ethic has helped him overcome a knee injury and become a solid player in the Atlantic Coast Conference.”
Butler, a two time all-ACC and ACC all-academic team member, was a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award. The senior captain anchored Tech’s highly-rated defense in 2004 as a free safety. Butler recently signed a free agent contract with the New York Giants.
“James’ work ethic is not only evident on the field and in the weight room but also in the classroom. He has earned first team all-ACC in football as well as being an academic all-ACC selection,” Ciano commented. “James is an outstanding leader being voted team captain and Most Improved Lifter. He sets examples for all those around him and is always willing to go the extra mile to succeed.”
Men’s basketball standout, Schenscher was a starter on the 2004 Georgia Tech Final Four team and was named to the Final Four All-Tournament team. As a senior, he averaged 10.1 points per game with 7.3 rebounds per game while shooting over 50-percent from the floor.
“Luke has an outstanding work ethic and is a quality person as well. Luke is always working on improving his game,” commented strength coach Scott McDonald. “Last year, he went from not starting the year before to being named to the Final Four All-Tournament team. He is definitely an example to the rest of his teammates of what hard work can do. It has been a pleasure working with him.”
Jayme Gergen, like Curry, was recently honored with the Georgia Tech Athletic Associations highest honor, the Total Person Award. She earned all-conference and all-America honors in leading the Tech volleyball program to four straight NCAA Tournaments. She is a Dean’s List student and academic all-district honoree majoring in Psychology.
“Jayme is the type of athlete you would like on every team. She has a tremendous work ethic and is very dedicated. She goes all out on everything we do from beginning to end,” McDonald stated. “She was chosen as one of the team captains for the2004 season and is a three-year starter. She has been named on the ACC Academic Honor Roll for the last three years. She was named to the 2004 NACWAA Classic all-tournament team. Jayme is one of the hardest working athletes I have ever had the chance to work with. She has been an absolute joy to coach.”
Senior softball player Katie Donovan has helped the Yellow Jackets to one of the most successful years in school history. The Jackets are currently ranked-17th, with key wins over rival Georgia and Northwestern and a sweep of ACC foe Florida State.
“Katie leads her team on the field and in the weight room by showing dedication and consistent hard effort,” observed strength coach Melissa Moore. “Her teammates respect her not only for her talent but also for her strong work ethic. Because of Katie’s commitment to excellence, she has been a 4 year starter and has made the ACC All-Tournament Team as well as the All-Region Tournament Team while maintaining over a 3.0 GPA.”
Lapsley is an all-American on Georgia Tech’s relay team for track and field. She is a three time ACC Champion and a six time all-ACC honoree.
“Andriane is one of the toughest athletes I have ever met. She trains for several events and then comes in the weight room and gives everything she has everyday,” McDonald said. “She never complains or never asks to take off from anything. She qualified for the 2004 NCAA East Region Championships in the 100, 200, 100 hurdles, and the 4x 100 relay. She was a 2004 all-American in the 4×100 relay. Her work ethic is unmatched and she has been an absolute joy to work with.”
Senior Chan Song led the Georgia Tech golf team to a second place finish at the 2005 ACC Championships with his second-place finish. The golf team is currently ranked third in the nation, while Song is ranked 20th individually.
“Chan is a highly motivated athlete with a great work ethic. His leadership in the weight room and on the golf course serves as an example for others to follow,” Ciano affirms. “His positive attitude and hard work has helped Georgia Tech finish in the top five for the last seven years.”
In women’s hoops, Megan Harpring was named team captain as a junior. This leader has helped the Yellow Jackets to wins over rival Georgia two out of the past three years.
“Megan is a leader for the women’s basketball team at Georgia Tech both in the weight room and on the court,” strength coach Neal Peduzzi commented. “She constantly pushes herself and her teammates during all of the lifting and conditioning sessions. Her hard work and dedication is unmatched.”
Jaclyn Keys was one of the first female swimmers at Georgia Tech. She has helped develop the women’s swim program and holds a Yellow Jacket swim record.
“Jaclyn is a very determined athlete whose work ethic and drive to be the best sets her apart from others,” strength coach Eddie Lee Ivery asserted. “She demonstrates great leadership abilities not only in the weight room but also in the pool and classroom. Jaclyn rises to every challenge presented to her and also encourages others to follow in her footsteps. She is a positive influence for our weight room.”