Victors: The NKU Athletics Award Show
Discover the nominees for this year’s male and female student athletes of the year as well as the new voting system created by Student Athlete Advisory Committee.
April 6, 2023
An electoral college style voting system is making its debut at this year’s Victors.
The new voting system gives every team three votes per award, with a maximum of two votes allowed to be given to a single person or team.
In the past, every student athlete was sent a ballot and able to record their vote for every award. This resulted in larger teams, such as baseball, dominating voting scores due to their larger roster size.
Sam Robinson, a senior and captain of the men’s soccer team joined the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) in the fall of 2022. He immediately noticed the issue with the voting system for Victors and advocated for a change to be made.
“Everyone had concerns about the vote being swayed by the bigger teams. I came up with the idea of a kind of electoral college with each team being given three votes,” Robinson said.
SAAC is hoping that this new voting system will lead to a better balance of sports amongst the winners.
Kyle Mastin, a graduate student and nominee for male student athlete of the year, has also been campaigning for the change in voting for Victors.
“This new voting system definitely makes it more fair, and gives us minority sports a chance,” Mastin, a member of the men’s cross country and track teams said.
“I am just happy to see that the best performances have a chance of winning, and that roster size won’t have an impact on who wins the award,” Robinson said.
The Victor’s Awards show is set to take place on Monday, April 10 in the Student Union ballroom. The awards show celebrates the many achievements of NKU’s student athletes and faculty over the last calendar year. Some of the main awards on the ballot are male and female student athlete of the year, best team GPA, coach of the year and most improved team.
SAAC is made up of representatives from each athletic team at NKU and is responsible for organizing and planning Victors. In February, the SAAC members were tasked with nominating individuals for each award from their team.
Following the submission of these nominations, athletic staff members narrowed down the nominees to four to five student athletes and teams per award, using data to do so.
With Victors fast approaching, here are the nominees for this year’s male and female student athletes of the year and the standout plays/moments they provided:
Marques Warrick, a junior from Lexington, Kentucky was vital for the men’s basketball team in the guard position this season. Warrick was appointed to the All-Horizon League 2nd team and named the Horizon League tournament MVP following NKU’s victory over Cleveland State. His 18 points against Cleveland State helped secure the Norse’s ticket to go dancing in March Madness.
Miles Parroco, a senior on the men’s golf team from Prospect, Kentucky transferred to NKU from Longwood University his junior year. In his first season for the Norse, he gained a top 10 finish at the 2022 Horizon League conference tournament and currently leads the team in scoring average.
Brandon Ponomarew, a senior from Ontario, Canada was named co-captain of the men’s tennis team alongside Trevor Ball this year. He was named to the 2022 All-Horizon League 2nd team and was selected as an NKU SAAC representative for the Horizon League alongside softball’s Lauryn Hicks.
Men’s track field/cross country
Kyle Mastin, a fifth-year from Covington, Kentucky has been a standout member of the men’s track and field and cross country team for the last five seasons. During the 2022 Horizon League outdoor track and field championship, he placed third in the 3000M steeplechase and eighth in the 3000M. “A standout moment this season would be making the podium for the steeplechase,” Mastin said.
At the 2022 Horizon League Cross Country Championship he placed 12th and was named to the All-Horizon League 2nd team.
“It feels great. There are a lot of amazing athletes at NKU, and it means a lot to be recognized” Mastin said about being nominated.
Manny Vorhees, a senior from Wapakoneta, Ohio is an infielder for the baseball team. Some season highs included two home runs against Bellarmine and four putouts against Texas A&M. His standout plays led to him being selected for the 2022 All-Horizon League 1st team.
Michael Hall is a student assistant coach on the baseball team who said, “Manny is a great leader out on the field, and a great guy to have on the team.”
Reilly Briggs, a senior from La Porte, Indiana is an outside hitter on the volleyball team. A standout performance for her came against Ball State where she provided the Norse with 23 points and 20 kills. She was a regular starter and helped her team reach the Horizon League final against Wright State. Briggs was named to the All-Horizon League 1st team.
Women’s track field/cross country
Megan Cole, a senior from Versailes, Indiana is a member of the women’s track and field and cross country team. During the 2022 Horizon League outdoor track and field championship, she placed fifth in the 10,000M and fifth in the 5000M. At the 2023 Horizon League Indoor Championship she placed third in the 3000M and sixth in the 5000M. Cole was also named to the cross country All-Horizon League 2nd team.
Lindsey Duvall, a graduate student from Mt. Washington, Kentucky was a key part of the women’s basketball team in the guard position this season. Duvall was appointed to the All-Horizon league 1st team and named to the Horizon League All-tournament team. Her 21 points and 9 rebounds against Cleveland State helped the Norse fight until the very end, and they ultimately lost narrowly 60-63.
Women’s track field
Megan Sullivan, a senior from Cincinnati, Ohio is part of both the women’s soccer and track and field team at NKU. During the 2022 Horizon League Outdoor track and field championship, she placed third in the 400M hurdles and first in the 4x400M relay. At the 2023 Horizon League Indoor Championship, she placed second in the 400M and first in the 4x400M relay.
The winners of male and female student athlete of the year will be announced during the Victors awards ceremony, on Monday, April 10 alongside the following awards:
– Team GPA (men)
– Team GPA (women)
– Community impact (team)
– Most improved team
– Coach of the year
– Behind the scenes award (athletic staff)
– Rookie of the year (male)
– Rookie of the year (female)
– International student-athlete of the year
– Performance of the year
– Play of the year
– Win of the year (team)
– Athlete of the year (male)
– Athlete of the year (female)
– Mr Norse (Senior students)
– Miss Norse (Senior students)