STERLING – Despite there being no spring sports, the Western Big 6 still is recognizing spring sport athletes for their contributions on and off the field.
The conference released its annual academic all-conference teams for baseball, softball, track & field, boys tennis and girls soccer, even though none of those athletes were able to take the field for their senior years in those sports.
"Among our schools, academics and the whole concept of being a student-athlete is very important," said Bob Swanson, executive secretary of the WB6. "For those students that do put in an extraordinary amount of work, building a strong grade point average and getting well-educated, we feel they deserve recognition any time we can give it to them."
To be eligible, an athlete must be a senior with a 3.25 GPA or higher, be a good citizen, and earn a varsity letter. Since a lot of schools use seven semesters to calculate GPA, the conference was able to use grades accumulated before the pandemic forced the closure of schools. The conference then asked coaches to estimate which seniors on their teams would have earned varsity letters had their seasons been played.
Sterling's honorees were Carter Lehman, Evan Tira and Cooper Willman in baseball; Bryan Garcia and Dillon Nitz in tennis; Luke Heffelfinger, Sam Janssen and Aidan Munoz-Ripley in boys track; Madilyn Barnhart, Madison Bland, Whitnie Garriott, Yaqueline Hernandez, Madisyn Nicklaus, Jada Rhodes, Samantha Smith, Katelynn Trobaugh and Brooke Wilson in girls track; Andrea Cervantes, Emma Frank, Claudia Garcia, Yuzuki Hosoi and Moira Roddy in soccer; and Olivia Edmondson, Grace Gould, Meghan Sechrest, Kaya Stringer and Addisen Thayer in softball.