RELEASE FROM THE SOUTHERN CONFERENCE:
SoCon announces November athletes of the month
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference announced its November athletes of the month for men's and women's basketball, football, volleyball and wrestling Thursday, highlighting excellence among student-athletes during the month.
Jelani Hewitt, Georgia Southern, R-Jr., G
Georgia Southern guard Jelani Hewitt averaged 24.5 points per game in November, scoring at least 20 points in six of the Eagles' eight games in the month. The redshirt junior from Miramar, Fla., was in double figures in each contest, highlighted by a career-high 38 points against Campbell on Nov. 30. Hewitt also had 11 rebounds in that game for his first double-double of the season. Hewitt began his month with 25 points in a season-opening win over Columbia International and backed that up with 27 in a one-point loss at Miami. Hewitt also scored 23 points in games against Toccoa Falls and Old Dominion and had 26 in a win over Presbyterian. He shot 44.1 percent (63-for-143) from the floor and 33.3 percent (22-for-66) from 3-point range in the month, making at least one 3 in each game. Hewitt twice earned SoCon Player of the Week honors for his November performances.
Others nominated: Tevin Baskin (Appalachian State), Brian White (The Citadel), De'Mon Brooks (Davidson), Kyle Cain (UNCG), Tim Williams (Samford), Z. Mason (Chattanooga), Trey Sumler (Western Carolina) and Spencer Collins (Wofford).
Janae' Stevenson, UNCG, Sr., F
UNCG forward Janae' Stevenson averaged 14.0 points and 10.2 rebounds in six November games, recording double-doubles in each of her last four contests. Stevenson began that streak with 11 points and 10 rebounds in a win over South Carolina State on Nov. 15 before turning in a career game in a win over Norfolk State on Nov. 20, scoring a career-high 24 points and matching her career best with 15 rebounds. She went for 10 points and 10 boards in a win over former SoCon foe College of Charleston on Nov. 23 before closing her month with 21 points and 14 rebounds against VCU. Stevenson opened the season with 12 points at Florida State. The Columbia, S.C., senior shot 47.1 percent from the floor in November, going 32-for-68. Stevenson was named the SoCon Player of the Week on Nov. 26.
Others nominated: Maryah Sydnor (Appalachian State), Laura Murray (Davidson), Holli Wilkins (Furman), Anna Claire Knight (Georgia Southern), Taylor Hall (Chattanooga), Krista Stricklin (Samford) and Lindsay Simpson (Western Carolina).
Marcus Cox, Appalachian State, Fr., RB
Appalachian State running back Marcus Cox ran for 551 yards and nine touchdowns and had 50 receiving yards and a touchdown in four November games. The consensus SoCon Freshman of the Year, Cox surpassed 100 rushing yards in three of those games, including an App freshman-record 215 in a season-ending win over Western Carolina. The Dacula, Ga., rookie also caught two passes for 19 yards and a score against the Catamounts, giving him a freshman school record with four touchdowns on the day. Cox went for 158 yards and three touchdowns against Chattanooga on Nov. 2 and had 119 yards and another three scores in a win over Wofford on Nov. 16. Cox ran for 59 yards and had 20 receiving yards in the Mountaineers' loss to FBS Georgia on Nov. 9. Cox was the SoCon Freshman of the Week three of the possible four times in November.
Other nominees: Ben Dupree (The Citadel), Ray Early (Furman), Kevin Ellison (Georgia Southern), Andy Summerlin (Samford), Jacob Huesman (Chattanooga), Eddie Sullivan (Western Carolina) and Will Gay (Wofford).
Jaquiski Tartt, Samford, R-Jr., S
Samford safety Jaquiski Tartt racked up 47 tackles in five November games, including 32 solo stops. The redshirt junior from Mobile, Ala., had his best game of the month in a win over Chattanooga on Nov. 16, accumulating a career-high 17 tackles (13 solo) and a pass break-up to earn SoCon Defensive Player of the Week honors for the second time this season. A first-team All-SoCon selection, Tartt had 12 tackles – 10 of them solo stops – and a pass break-up in the Bulldogs' loss to Jacksonville State in the first round of the FCS Playoffs. He narrowly missed another game in double figures, recording nine tackles against The Citadel on Nov. 2.
Other nominees: Karl Anderson (Appalachian State), Justin Oxendine (The Citadel), Edwin Jackson (Georgia Southern), Wes Dothard (Chattanooga), Christon Gill (Western Carolina) and Mike McCrimmon (Wofford).
Michaela Reesor, Samford, Jr., OH
Samford outside hitter Michaela Reesor had 162 kills in nine November matches, averaging 4.76 per set and reaching double figures in each contest as the Bulldogs went 8-1 and reached the SoCon Championship title match. Reesor had an even 20 kills in each of her first four matches, all Samford wins, then had 19 each in wins over Western Carolina and league-leading Furman. The junior from Caledon, Ontario, Canada, added 10 kills and 12 digs in a sweep of Western Carolina in the opening round of the SoCon Championship before adding 15 kills against Furman in the semifinals the following day. Reesor, the SoCon Player of the Year, had 19 kills and 11 digs against Georgia Southern in the title match, which the Eagles won 3-1. With 497 kills on the season, Reesor broke a nearly 20-year-old school record and became the 11th player in school history to surpass 1,000 career kills. She was the SoCon Offensive Player of the Week on Nov. 4.
Other nominees: Ise D'angelo (The Citadel), Caroline Brown (Davidson), Andrea Fisher (Furman) and Jamie DeRatt (Georgia Southern).
Chelsi Carter, Samford, Jr., L
Samford libero Chelsi Carter recorded 186 digs in November, averaging 5.47 per set as the Bulldogs won their first eight matches in the month before falling in the SoCon Championship title bout. The junior from Meridianville, Ala., reached double digits in digs in each match, highlighted by a 31-dig effort against Western Carolina on Nov. 9 that led to her earning SoCon Defensive Player of the Week honors. Carter followed that performance with 28 digs in a win over league-leading Furman on Nov. 15 and added 26 against Wofford two days later. She had 21 digs and 10 assists against the Catamounts in the first round of the SoCon tournament to cap a streak of four straight matches with at least 20 digs. The SoCon Libero of the Year, Carter had 24 digs against Georgia Southern in the title match.
Other nominees: Erin Bucherl (The Citadel), Elle Ross (Furman) and Alexandra Beecher (Georgia Southern).
Corey Mock, Chattanooga, Jr., 165 pounds
Chattanooga 165-pounder Corey Mock was a two-time SoCon Wrestler of the Week in November. The junior transfer from North Carolina was unbeaten in his first month of competition for the Mocs, going 10-0 with two pins and three wins over ranked opponents. Mock took his first weekly honor in the first week of the season after going 5-0 with wins over No. 11 Joseph Booth (Hofstra), No. 16 Chris Moon (Virginia Tech) and No. 12 Ramon Santiago (Rider) at the Hokie Duals on Nov. 10. Mock earned his first pin of the season against Shorter on Nov. 16, sticking Seth Broom in just 1:06. The Chapel Hill, N.C., native then completed his month with a 4-0 showing at the Navy Classic on Nov. 23, winning the title at 165 en route to his second weekly SoCon honor. Mock dominated at the tournament, earning a technical fall, a pin and a major decision to reach the final before topping Navy's Peyton Walsh in the title bout, 3-2. Walsh, Mock's 10th opponent of the month, was the first wrestler to score on him this season. Mock is currently ranked sixth nationally at 165.
Other nominees: Dylan Cottrell (Appalachian State), Eloheim Palma (Campbell), Turtogtokh Luvsandorj (The Citadel) and Scott Patrick (Davidson).
Southern Conference October Athletes of the Month
Men's Basketball Jelani Hewitt, Georgia Southern
Women's Basketball Janae' Stevenson, UNCG
Football – Offense Marcus Cox, Appalachian State
Football – Defense Jaquiski Tartt, Samford
Volleyball – Offense Michaela Reesor, Samford
Volleyball – Defense Chelsi Carter, Samford
Wrestling Corey Mock, Chattanooga