Witt and Ketron Win Top ODAC Scholar-Athlete Awards
FOREST, Va. --- A pair of Maroons earned the conference's top honors in a vote of the ODAC Board of Directors at the annual league meetings last week. Roanoke College women's track athlete Sarah Witt was recognized as the Marjorie Berkley Award winner, while golfer Brandon Ketron was tabbed the winner of the Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Award. This marks the first time that Roanoke has swept the awards, standing with Washington and Lee as the only two schools to do so.
Inaugurated in 1984 and 1981, respectively, the Marjorie Berkley and Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Scholar-Athlete Awards are given each spring to member college seniors and conference sport participants who exhibit the highest athletic, academic, and extracurricular achievements. Ms. Berkley began her collegiate teaching career at Lynchburg College. Several years later, Ms. Berkley moved to Hollins University where she coached tennis, field hockey and soccer, and served as the athletic director for 30 years. The Jopson Award is named in honor of the Bridgewater College professor and coach who retired in 1981 following 45 years at BC. Dr. Jopson, who initiated and directed the Eagles' cross country and track programs, led his teams to ODAC indoor track titles in 1979, 1980 and 1981, and outdoor crowns in 1978 through 1981.
Witt, a senior Mathematics major from Bedford, Va., was a standout on and off the track for Roanoke. She was a perennial member of the Roanoke College Dean's List and graduated magna cum laude. She was a member of several honors societies including Phi Beta Kappa (national academic), Omicron Delta Kappa (leadership), Phi Mu Epsilon (mathematics), Alpha Chi (national upperclassmen academic), and Alpha Lambda Delta (national freshman academic). She also received the Julia McBriety Chalfant Memorial Award for excellence in mathematics. She is a four-time member of the All-ODAC Academic Team. She is the second Maroon female athlete to garner this award and the first since Casey Smith in 2001.
On the track, Witt is a multi-ODAC and school record holder in the hurdles events, as well as a multi-event champion at the conference indoor and outdoor track championships. A member of five championship teams (indoors and outdoors in 2010 and 2012; outdoors in 2009), Witt holds the ODAC outdoor championship and overall record in the 100-meter hurdles (14.70), an event she won for the second time in 2012. She is also a member of Roanoke's 4x400-meter relay record-setting squad (3:54.65). Witt holds indoor overall and championship marks in the 55-meter (8.45) and 60-meter hurdles (9.13). She is the Roanoke College record-holder in each of those events, in addition to the distance medley relay record (13:11.62). For her efforts in 2009, which included three event wins and a trip to the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Witt was named ODAC Rookie of the Year.
A team captain in both 2010-11 and 2011-12, Witt's leadership extended beyond the athletic arena into several campus organizations and in the surrounding community. She was president of the Roanoke College chapter of the Mathematic Association of America and vice-president of Females Excelling More in Math, Engineering and Science. She also served the admissions department as a Maroon Ambassador, and was a student-assistant for the track & field office. Witt volunteered at the Special Olympics Basketball Tournament hosted by Roanoke College, one of several volunteer efforts that included work in the nursery and after school program at Greenvale School, student-mentoring at Breckenridge Middle School, and contributions to Rescue Mission.
Ketron, a Business Administration major from Abingdon, Va., was also a frequent honoree on the Roanoke College Dean's List prior to graduating with concentrations in accounting and finance. A member of Alpha Lamda Delta and Delta Mu Delta (national business achievements) honor societies, Ketron received Outstanding Student in Finance laurels, having been a part of the Top 100 Accounting Students in the state of Virginia in 2010. He is also a four-time member of the All-ODAC Academic Team, and was named to the Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-American Golf Scholarship Team.
On the course, Ketron finished third in the ODAC with a 74.5 strokes per round average. In 10 total events played, he finished in the top-10 five different times, in addition to earning medalist honors in the Scarlett division of the 41st Marine Corps Intercollegiate after firing a season-low 6-under par 206. His first event win came in the last tournament of the season as he won medalist honors at the 2012 ODAC Championships at Bay Creek Resort in Cape Charles, Va. His efforts helped lead Roanoke to a second place team finish. Named Roanoke College's Most Outstanding Male Athlete this spring, Ketron is a three-time member of the All-ODAC First Team, ODAC All-Tournament Team and All-ODAC Sportsmanship Team. The Maroons' team captain was named Sportsman of the Year for his efforts this season.
Ketron has contributed to the community in several ways. He has been a volunteer with youth basketball programs and camps, as well as at the local food bank. He also participated at First Tee of Roanoke, which is dedicated to providing young people of all backgrounds an opportunity to develop, through golf and character education, life-enhancing values such as honesty, integrity and sportsmanship. Ketron most recently participated in local house repair efforts for the Lowe's Community Service Project.
2012 Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Award Nominees
Daniel Preston, Emory & Henry
Ben Rogers, Hampden-Sydney
Derrick Woods-Morrow, Randolph
Tyler Midwinter, Randolph-Macon
Brandon Ketron, Roanoke
Pike Brynildsen, Virginia Wesleyan
Charlie Westfal, Washington and Lee
2012 Marjorie Berkley Award Nominees
Samantha Lucado, Emory & Henry
Taylor Walker, Lynchburg
Sarah Witt, Roanoke
Alex St. Pierre, Sweet Briar
Kat Lawson, Washington and Lee