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PLAS celebrates fall sports

While it may be the beginning of spring, Pike Liberal Arts School turned back the hands of time Tuesday night to celebrate accomplishments that took place a few months ago.

The school held its yearly fall sports banquet honoring every athlete in three different programs: cheerleading, volleyball and football.

“This was a group that always worked hard and did an amazing job,” Mendy Avant said about her varsity volleyball team.

“This was the best group I have ever had.”

The team had seven seniors: Sara Richburg, Shelby Broadway Katie Wiggins, Brand Henderson, Anna Saunders, Eady Pinckard and Kailee Taylor.

Wiggins was named the Offensive Player of the Year for the team.

The JV football team announced next, followed by the varsity team.

Before announcing the names off the roster for the 2009 AISA football state champion Patriots, head coach and athletic director for the school Steven Kilcrease thanked everyone evolved with the school and the program for all the work they had done during the previous season.

He then recalled a moment from the season hat served as a turning point for this team

“It was a great season,” Kilcrease said.

“Things turned around for us when we went up to Auburn and played Lee-Scott and won.

“I still get chills just thinking about it,” the coach continued to the crowd of parents and supporters.

As a whole, Kilcrease said this was a group that was tested a lot but always found a way to pull through.

“This group went through a lot and really showed its character all throughout the season.

“They had a lot of heart and earned that championship,” he said.

There were seven seniors on the roster: Daniel Powell, Trey Walters, Blake Thomas, Justin McLaughlin, Will Starling, Tanner Grant and Parker Smith.

Kilcrease presented the player awards after the introductions.

Junior Sam Carroll go the Offensive Backs Award, Grant got the Offensive Lineman Award, Walters for the Offensive Player of the Year award.

On the defensive side of the ball, sophomore Nick McLaughlin got the Defensive Backs Award, while his older brother Justin, got the Defensive Lineman Award with Starling getting the Defensive Player of the Year.

Grant got the “TKA” award while both Walters and Thomas each received the Coach’s Award.

The last award, the Patriot Award, was presented to Justin McLaughlin.

The ceremony ended with the entire team getting the jewelry it had earned from the past season – the 2009 State Championship rings.