Schultz, Saunders HS Excellence Awards announced

STILLWATER, Okla. — The National Wrestling Hall of Fame & Museum has announced its winners of the Dave Schultz and Tricia Saunders High School Excellence Awards for 2015.

Originally created in honor of Schultz, an Olympic and World champion, the High School Excellence Award is based on excellence in wrestling, scholastic achievement, citizenship and community service. State winners for both the Schultz and Saunders Awards have been selected in each of the states that sponsor high school state championships. For the boys, there are 49 state winners. For the girls, there are seven from the states of Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington.

“We are very excited to announce these high school senior winners of the Dave Schultz and Tricia Saunders High School Excellence awards for 2015,” said Lee Roy Smith, Executive Director of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Schultz award and the second anniversary of the Saunders award. “These student-athletes are role models who influence young people in a very meaningful way,” Smith said. “We are not surprised to find that these winners represent diverse socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds; reinforcing why the sport of wrestling is by nature and design a sport for all.”

A national winner of the Saunders Award will be named from the seven winners in the states that sponsor an all-female state championship. For the Schultz Award, five regional winners have been announced. The national winners of both High School Excellence Awards will be revealed on May 4, 2015, and presented at Honors Weekend in Stillwater on June 5-6.

Dave Schultz’s widow, Nancy Schultz, will attend Honors Weekend festivities this June to present the Schultz and Saunders awards to each national recipient.

“We are grateful that Nancy will attend this year’s Honors Weekend ceremonies as an award presenter and has also agreed to speak about a soon-to-be released documentary on the life of Dave Schultz,” Smith said.

The five male regional winners for 2015 are:

Central Region: Joe Smith, Stillwater High School, Stillwater, Okla. High school record was 154-1, winning three individual state titles. His overall grade point average is 3.2. Smith will attend Oklahoma State University this fall as a projected 157-pounder.

Midwest Region: Logan Massa, St. Johns High School, St. Johns, Mich. High school record was 182-4, winning three individual state titles. His overall grade point average is 3.2. Massa will attend the University of Michigan this fall as a projected 174 pounder.

Northeast Region: Matthew Kolodzik, Blair Academy, Blairstown, New Jersey. High school record was 144-8, winning three National Prep Championships. His overall grade point average is 4.0. Kolodzik will attend Princeton University this fall as a projected 141-149 pounder.

Southeast Region: Fox Baldwin, Osceola High School, Osceola, Flor. High school record was 395-17, winning five individual state championships. His overall grade point average is 3.98. Baldwin will attend the University of Virginia this fall as a projected 165-174 pounder.

West Region: Zahid Valencia, St. John Bosco High School, Bellflower, CA. High school record was 164-1, winning three individual state championships. His overall grade point average is 3.71. Valencia will attend Arizona State University this fall as a projected 174-184 pounder.

The 2015 Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award winners by state, name and school are:

Alabama, Arick Shankles, Muscle Shoals High School
Alaska, Josh Roetman, Kotzebue High School
Arizona, Josh Kramer, Desert Edge High School
Arkansas, Braden Zini, Central Arkansas Christian
California, Zahid Valencia, St. John Bosco High School
Colorado, Jacob Trujillo, Grand Junction High School
Connecticut, Zack Murillo, Southington High School
Delaware, Clint Ferrazzo, Caravel Academy
Florida, Fox Baldwin, Osceola High School
Georgia, Taylor Lujan, Carrollton High School
Hawaii, Boman Tokioka, Kamehameha High School
Idaho, Seth McLeod, Post Falls High School
Illinois, Michael Johnson, Montini Catholic High School
Indiana, Garrett Pepple, East Noble High School
Iowa, Max Thomsen, Union High School
Kansas, Sean DeShazer, Wichita Heights High School
Kentucky, Austin Myers, Campbell County High School
Louisiana, Paul Klein, Brother Martin High School
Maine, Cody Hughes, Marshwood High School
Maryland, Myles Martin, McDonogh High School
Massachusetts, Jonathan Viruet, Springfield Central High School
Michigan, Logan Massa, St. Johns High School
Minnesota, Lance Benick, Totino-Grace High School
Missouri, Ke-Shawn Hayes, Park Hill High School
Montana, Luke Entzel, Big Sky High School
Nebraska, Doyle Trout, Centennial High School
Nevada, Beau Billingsley, Lowry High School
New Hampshire, Jean-Luc Lemieux, Londonderry High School
New Jersey, Matthew Kolodzik, Blair Academy
New Mexico, Rico Montoya, Robertson High School
New York, Nick Piccininni, Ward Melville High School
North Carolina, Will Clark, Cary High School
North Dakota, Jordan Shearer, West Fargo High School
Ohio, Cameron Kelly, Bellbrook High School
Oklahoma, Joe Smith, Stillwater High School
Oregon, Alex Rich, Crescent Valley High School
Pennsylvania, Michael Kemerer, Franklin Regional High School
Rhode Island, Ebed Jarrell, East Greenwich High School
South Carolina, Matt Rudy, Cane Bay High School
South Dakota, Brett Bye, Vermillion High School
Tennessee, Chris DeBien, Cleveland High School
Texas, Garrett Miller, Allen High School
Utah, Jacob Armstrong, Salem Hills High School
Vermont, Troy Gassaway, Mount Anthony Union High School
Virginia, Neal Richards, Matoaca High School
Washington, Tate Orndorff, University High School
West Virginia, Bryce Humphreys, Winfield High School
Wisconsin, Robert Lee, Kaukauna High School
Wyoming, Tevis Bartlett, Cheyenne East High School

The 2015 Tricia Saunders High School Excellence Award winners by state, name and school are:

Alaska, Brittany Woods-Orrison, Mt. Edgecumbe High School
California, Alyssa LaFrancis, Rancho Buena Vista High School
Hawaii, Carly Jaramillo, Lahainaluna High School
Oregon, Jessica DeHart, Hood River Valley High School
Tennessee, Alexandria Knowles, Science Hill High School
Texas, Daniela Flores, Hanks High School
Washington, Marizza Birrueta, Grandview High School

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