The Goshen News is excited to announce more show information and the finalists for the upcoming 2022 Goshen News Sports Awards!
This inaugural event will be aired Monday, June 20 at 6 p.m. It will be posted on our website, goshennews.com, and on our various social media platforms as well.
The show will be taped earlier that day at the Goshen College “Globe TV” studio, providing The Goshen News with an award-winning staff and quality video recording and editing equipment to produce the best show we can. We thank the Goshen College Communication Department for making this possible for us, and we’re really excited to collaborate with one of the best small-school journalism programs in the country!
With that being said, here are the three finalists for each award for the 2022 Goshen News Sports Awards. Nominees are listed in alphabetical order by school. The awards are listed off in the order they will be read during the show.
FEMALE BREAKOUT ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Claire Payne, freshman, NorthWood: Payne excelled in three sports in her first year as a high school student. She recorded 236 kills and 80 blocks on a volleyball team that reached the regional final, averaged 5.3 points and nearly 10 rebounds in basketball and then qualified for the state track meet as part of the Panthers 4×100-meter relay team.
Emma Yoder, sophomore, Wawasee: Yoder had a big spring, breaking the Wawasee school discus record multiple times. Her best performance came at the state meet, where her toss of 134-03 feet landed her a third-place finish in the event.
Bri Munoz, freshman, Westview: Munoz had a sensational freshman season for the Warriors’ girls soccer team, scoring 30 goals and tallying 11 assists (71 points total) to lead her team on offense. Westview finished with a 15-3-4 record, advancing to their first Class 1A regional final since 2016.
MALE BREAKOUT ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Armen Koltookian, junior, Concord: A three-sport star, Koltookian emerged this year in both football and wrestling. He racked up 122 tackles in 11 games for the Minutemen football team, then followed that up by winning NLC, sectional, regional and semistate wrestling titles in the 195-pound weight class. He had a productive spring as well, qualifying for the boys track regional meet as part of the 4×400-meter relay team for Concord.
Brayden Miller, freshman, Fairfield: The poised freshman has been one of the best boys golfers in the area this spring, qualifying for the state tournament. He’s been the individual medalist for numerous events, including the Goshen Invitational April 16. His excellent play helped the Falcons to a regular season NECC championship and a regional berth as a team.
Tagg Gott, junior, Northridge: Having to become the Raiders’ quarterback in the final week of the regular season due to a slew of injuries, Gott led Northridge on an improbable run to the Class 4A football state championship game. He would finish the season as the leading passer and rusher for the Raiders, accumulating 1,103 yards through the air and 1,110 on the ground with 26 total touchdowns. He was also a leader on the defensive side of the ball, compiling up 92 tackles in 15 games.
FEMALE MENTAL ATTITIDUE AWARD — finalists
Grace Brenneman, senior, Concord: Along with her performance in the swimming pool (more on that later), Brenneman was named the IHSAA Mental Attitude Award winner for the sport at this year’s state championship meet. She is a member of various extracurricular groups and was also named the 2021 Miss Elkhart County 4-H Fair Queen.
Colleen Miller, senior, Northridge: The starting point guard for the Raiders’ basketball team, Miller suffered a devastating knee injury toward the end of the season. Despite her high school career being cut short, Miller stayed on with the team and continued to be a leader from the bench.
Cybil Stillson, senior, NorthWood: Along with her performance on the golf course (more on that later, too), Stillson was named the IHSAA Mental Attitude Award winner for the sport at this year’s state championship meet.
MALE MENTAL ATTITIDUE AWARD — finalists
Ethan Kavanaugh, senior, Concord: A two-sport athlete, Kavanaugh was seen as a leader on both the tennis and basketball teams for the Minutemen.
Micah Hochstetler, senior, Northridge: Hochstetler was a team captain for both the football and basketball teams at Northridge. After suffering an injury in week five of the football season, Hochstetler stayed with his team, leading them off the field and helping them reach the Class 4A state title game. He would come back to play in said championship game, as well as in the boys basketball season as well.
Gramm Egli, senior, Westview: A key piece to the Class 1A state champion Warriors soccer team, Egli received the IHSAA Mental Attitude Award for the sport in Class 1A. He was voted the captain of his team and a three-year starter for Westview.
FEMALE SCHOLAR ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Lillian Schackow, senior, Lakeland: Along with playing on the Lakers’ volleyball and tennis teams, Schackow was the LaGrange County recipient of the Lilly Endowment Scholarship, which provides “Full-tuition, required fees and book stipend for four years,” per the scholarship’s website.
Cybil Stillson, senior, NorthWood: Along with being an elite golfer and the IHSAA Mental Attitude Award winner, Stillson was the valedictorian for NorthWood High School’s Class of 2022.
Alexys Antal, senior, Westview: On top of being a three-sport athlete for the Warriors, Antal was the valedictorian for Westview High School’s Class of 2022.
MALE SCHOLAR ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Drew Hogan, senior, Goshen: Was Goshen High School’s overall scholar athlete for the 2021-22 school year, including the scholar athlete for all three sports he competed in (cross country, boys basketball and track).
Tristian Bratt, senior, Northridge: Graduated in the top 3% of his class. Was also a state qualifier in boys swimming.
Diego Flores, senior, West Noble: Received the Lilly Endowment Scholarship for Noble County. Was also an all-conference selection in boys soccer for the Chargers.
FEMALE SPORTS COACH OF THE YEAR — finalists
Tom Johnson, Concord girls swimming: Coached the Minutemen to a 4th place finish at the state meet, its best finish in program history. Also won NLC and sectional titles.
Brodie Garber, Fairfield girls basketball: Guided the Falcons to a 24-4 record, leading them to the Class 2A semi-state game along the way. Had to make key lineup adjustments as well when senior point guard Brooke Sanchez went down with an injury in January.
Hilary Laidig, NorthWood volleyball: A year after graduating eight seniors, Laidig led the Panthers to an impressive 32-3 record and a Class 3A regional championship game appearance. NorthWood won numerous regular season invites, the outright NLC title and a third-straight sectional championship.
MALE SPORTS COACH OF THE YEAR — finalists
Darin Kauffman, Fairfield baseball: Guided the Falcons to a 19-7 overall record and the program’s first sectional title since 2010. His best coaching job, though, came with managing the emotions of his team in the final three weeks following the passing of sophomore player Kadin Schrock.
Chad Eppley, Northridge football: Led Northridge to the Class 4A state championship game. Had to overcome numerous injuries, including to starting quarterback Micah Hochstetler, to lead his team to their first state title game appearance in program history.
Jamie Martin, Westview boys soccer: Coached the Warriors to the Class 1A state championship. Westview pulled off three-straight upsets in its final three postseason games to win the program’s first state title.
FEMALE INDIVIDUAL ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Grace Brenneman, senior, Concord girls swimming: Third in the 50-yard freestyle and fifth in the 100-yard freestyle while also being on the fifth-place 200-yard freestyle relay and third-place 400-yard freestyle relay teams at the state meet for the Minutemen. Set numerous school records along the way as well.
Cybil Stillson, senior, NorthWood girls golf: Finished 11th at the state meet, earning her all-state honors. Won numerous invites across the season, including shooting a state-record 62 in the regional to earn medalist honors there.
Jiselle Miller, senior, Northridge girls diving: Finished in second place at the state meet in diving. She won every other meet she competed in during the season, though, and set new school records for both six-dive and 11-dive events.
MALE INDIVIDUAL ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Alec Hershberger, junior, Fairfield baseball: Complied a 5-3 record with a 1.29 ERA and 121 strikeouts in 59.2 innings pitched. Was the starting pitcher for Fairfield in the sectional-winning game over Westview.
Henry Torres, senior, West Noble boys soccer: Put up a staggering 46 goals and added five assists for a total of 97 points in 21 games played. Was the offensive leader for a Chargers team that reached a Class 2A regional final game.
Austin Cripe, junior, West Noble: Averaged 23ppg, 6.1rpg, 3.4apg and 3.1spg this season, earning him Goshen News Player of the Year honors.
FEMALE THREE-SPORT ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Tame Baylis, junior, Northridge: Competed in cross country, basketball and track. Had the highest finish of her team at the state cross country meet, finishing 47th overall individually. Stepped into a starting position late into the girls basketball season, helping lead one of the best defensive units in the area. In track, she was part of the 4×400-meter relay team that qualified for the state meet.
Claire Payne, freshman, NorthWood: Competed in volleyball, basketball and track. She recorded 236 kills and 80 blocks on a volleyball team that reached the regional final, averaged 5.3 points and nearly 10 rebounds in basketball and then qualified for the state track meet as part of the Panthers 4×100-meter relay team.
Alexys Antal, senior, Westview: Played volleyball, basketball and softball. Led her team on the volleyball court with 60 aces and 323 digs. Put up averages of 4.4ppg, 3.3rpg, 2.1apg and 1.7spg. Her best sport was softball, though, where she dominated with a .597 batting average with 23 RBIs. She also went 12-3 pitching with 255 strikeouts and a 1.02 ERA in 130 innings.
MALE THREE-SPORT ATHLETE OF THE YEAR — finalists
Beck Willems, senior, Bethany Christian: Played soccer, basketball and baseball. In soccer, he was an all-Hoosier Plains Conference selection, leading the Bruins’ defense. In basketball, he became the program’s all-time leading scorer, finishing up his senior year with averages of 18.6ppg, 7.5rpg, 2.8apg and 1.7spg. In baseball, he led the team with a .433 batting average and 28 RBIs.
Armen Koltookian, junior, Concord: Competed in football, wrestling and track. He racked up 122 tackles in 11 games for the Minutemen football team, then followed that up by winning NLC, sectional, regional and semistate wrestling titles in the 195-pound weight class. He had a productive spring as well, qualifying for the boys track regional meet as part of the 4×400-meter relay team for Concord.
Drew Hogan, senior, Goshen: Competed in cross country, basketball and track. Finished 12th individually at the state cross country meet in the fall. He then moved into third all time on the program’s basketball scoring list, finishing with averages of 14ppg, 2.7rpg, 3apg and 1spg for the season. In the spring, he anchored the 4×800-meter relay team that made it to the state meet.
FEMALE TEAM OF THE YEAR — finalists
Concord girls swimming: Finished in fourth place at the state championship meet. Won NLC and sectional titles, setting numerous new individual program records along the way as well.
Fairfield girls tennis: Went 16-2 this season, winning NECC, sectional and regional championships. Only losses came to other regional champions in Homestead and Delta.
NorthWood girls golf: Made it to the state tournament for the fourth-straight season, finishing 13th. Won NLC and sectional titles and finished second in the regional on their way to the state finals.
MALE TEAM OF THE YEAR — finalists
Northridge football: Reached the Class 4A state championship game, winning five-straight playoff games after a 5-4 regular season. It was the first time reaching the state title contest in program history.
NorthWood boys basketball: Went 25-3, reaching a Class 3A regional championship game. Went undefeated in NLC play for the first time in program history. Also reached No. 1 in the Class 3A AP poll for the first time as well.
Westview boys soccer: Won the Class 1A state championship with a 4-2 (OT) win over Providence. They won their final three postseason games without ever leading in regulation, pulling off dramatic comebacks in all three contests to win the program’s first ever state title.