by Matt Vines, Assistant Sports Information Director
Northwestern State swept the Southland Conference Steve McCarty Citizenship awards for the third time since the honor was created in 2006.
Track and field sprinter Ebenezer Aggrey and softball pitcher Bronte Rhoden were selected for the honors by the league’s academic advisors, athletic directors and conference personnel.
The Demons and Lady Demons have captured 11 of the 34 possible honors, the most in Southland Conference history.
Aggrey has excelled both on and off the track, currently serving as the student body vice president despite a hectic athletics and class schedule.
He has led campus food drives, local toy drives and increased the track and field program’s involvement on campus and in the community. An active member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee during his career, he now serves as the Student Government Liaison to SAAC.
On the track, he reached the 400 meters finals at the Southland Conference Outdoor Championships, scoring four points with a fifth-place finish. He also ran a leg on the bronze medal 4×400 relay as the Demons placed second overall as a team, the highest finish in the Mike Heimerman era.
Aggrey has accumulated a 3.84 GPA in accounting and business administration with a possible eye toward political office in his future.
Rhoden has also taken an active role on and off the diamond.
She spearheaded a collaboration between the athletics department and NSU’s Gallaspy College of Education to “adopt” an elementary school where students read to kids K-3rd monthly.
As SAAC president, Rhoden organized “Make a Child Smile” toy drive and hurricane relief drives for other Southland schools impacted by natural disasters. She also assumed control of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes group at NSU after its long-time advisors retired.
Rhoden served as a versatile arm, pitching as a starter and reliever in 19 total appearances with a 6-5 record and a 2.32 ERA. Her ERA dropped to 1.47 against SLC opponents while also sporting a sub .200 opponent batting average, which included a two-hit shutout of UIW with a career-high 12 strikeouts.
Rhoden sports a perfect 4.0 GPA in biology with aspirations to be an orthopedic surgeon.
The honor is named for the former Stephen F. Austin athletic director Steve McCarty, who served at the school for 21 years, including 15 as athletic director. McCarty, an Alto, Texas, native, retired from SFA in 2005 and is a two-time graduate of the university. He is a member of the SFA Board of Regents and the SFA Alumni Association’s “Football Coaches Hall of Honor.” McCarty was inducted into the Southland Conference Hall of Honor in 2006.
The McCarty award recognizes a male and female student-athlete who exhibit outstanding qualities in citizenship, sportsmanship, leadership and community service.
2022 Ebenezer Aggrey, MTF
2022 Bronte Rhoden, SB
2015 Jackie Strug, SOC
2015 Daniel Hazlewood, FB
2014 Amy Williams, WTN
2014 Quinton Helaire, MTF
2013 John Shaughnessy, FB
2012 Gary Stewart, MBB
2011 Yaser Elqutub, FB
2009 Lyndzee Greene, WBB
2008 Cary Bruno, SB
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