Criteria for End of the Year Awards
Student-Athlete of the Year- One player is selected as the award recipient each year in each USCAA sport and division. The nomination process will allow institutions to nominate one player per sport/division. The emphasis of this award is on academics and community involvement, versus athletic performance. The award winner is selected by a committee comprised of National Office members, board members, and member Athletic Directors.
Coach of the Year- One coach is selected as the award recipient each year in each USCAA sport/division. Athletic Directors and coaches are permitted to nominate, but only one nomination will be accepted per school. The award will be selected by a committee comprised of National Office members, board members, and member Athletic Directors.
Player of the Year- Awarded to the best player in the USCAA in each sport/division. The award is selected by a committee comprised of National Office members, board members, and member Athletic Directors.
The 2014-15 season marks the first year of the USCAA End of the Year Awards
MEN'S DIVISION I: Student-Athlete of the Year
David Louison, St. Joseph's College-Brooklyn- In addition to being the leader of the Bears and one of the most prolific scorers and rebounders in team history as a member of the 1,500-point, 1,000-rebound club, senior David Louison is an outstanding student, boasting a 3.93 GPA as a criminal justice major. The two-time USCAA National All-Academic Team member was most recently selected to the CoSIDA/Capital One Academic All-District team, one of only 44 Division III men's basketball players to receive the distinction nationally, and the first St. Joseph's College student-athlete in any sport to receive the honor. He moves on to the national ballot with a chance to receive Academic All-American honors later this month. Outside of the classroom, Louison works in the US Attorney Office as a legal clerk intern, gaining valuable experience to pursue a career as a lawyer post graduation. Also active in the school community, Louison also served as an orientation leader.
MEN'S DIVISION I: Coach of the Year
John Hemenway, Berea College- Coach Hemenway is in his fifth season as the Mountaineers' leader and his having the best season of his career and one of the best in the history of the program. Hemenway has done a masterful job of using nearly every player on his bench to play an up-temp/pressure defense style. That rotation doesn't permit Berea to have one "go to" player; but several. Berea is currently first in the USCAA in Points Per Game, 3-point percentage, assists and steals.
2014-15 Record: 20-6
MEN'S DIVISION I: Player of the Year
WOMEN'S DIVISION I: Student-Athlete of the Year
Shanae Hilliard, The Apprentice School- Shanae has been one of the team leaders throughout her apprenticeship - on the court and on the job. With her position in the molder department, she's been the lead apprentice on several jobs and has earned high praise from many leaders in her trade. She has a 3.6 GPA and is second on the team in scoring averaging 12.3 points per game.
WOMEN'S DIVISION I: Coach of the Year
Eric Jackson Jr., Concordia College-Alabama- Entered the USCAA National Tournament on a 21-game winning streak. Number 1 in the USCAA Coaches Poll every week this season. Won 19 out of 21 games by double digits.
Key Wins: NAIA Powerhouses Talladega College and Faulkner University. NCAA D2 school Stillman College. #5 USCAA D1 Ranked The Apprentice School.
2014-15 Record: 24-4
WOMEN'S DIVISION I: Player of the Year
MEN'S DIVISION II: Student-Athlete of the Year
Keith Chesley, University of Maine at Augusta- Over the past 3 years at the University of Maine at Augusta, junior Keith Chesley has achieved a 3.533 cumulative GPA and played basketball for the Moose. Keith has done this all the while working and volunteering in his community. Keith coaches an AAU team for the Gilman Street Basketball Club and spends his free time officiating for the Lawrence youth basketball program. Chesley works at Pine Tree Camp in the summer and also volunteers for many different Pine Tree Camp activities. Keith often volunteers in a kindergarten class and has been a mentor is his mom's special education class. He has volunteered at Lawrence High School games doing the scorebook and helps out at practices for his former team. His volunteer work continues in the UMA community as well. Keith has participated in many of our food drives, blood drives, and has helped organize UMA's athletic fundraisers including the softball, golf, and 3v3 tournaments and was instrumental in a letter writing campaign to collect donations for the basketball program. He has been awarded many academic honors at UMA including dean's list, the Rising Scholar Award, and the C. Richard Haskell Memorial Scholarship. Chesley is also a two-time of the USCAA All-Academic Award. Keith also works as an emerging leader for the athletic department, helping out with game management, the athletic website, and advertising for events. On the basketball team, Coach Jim Ford notes that Chesley is an incredible leader. He has been a captain for the last two years and leads his team both on and off the court. He is involved with every campus visit by new recruits and has dedicated himself whole-heartedly to this basketball program.
MEN'S DIVISION II: Coach of the Year
Jim Casciano, Johnson and Wales (NC)- Coach Jim Casciano was hired in July 2014 to take over the Johnson and Wales Men's Basketball program. It was late in the recruiting and scheduling season, but Coach Casciano was able to land some impact players for the 2014-15 team, and put together a schedule currently ranked at the 6th toughest nationally. Under his guidance and leadership, the team has produced both on and off the court. The team had never had a winning season in its four previous years. Coach Casciano has also instilled discipline and toughness in the team. Those results have shown up particularly in their road record. The Wildcats were 1-22 in road/neutral games from October 2013 season through December 2014. As the players have bought into Jim's coaching, the results have followed. JWU is 3-3 in road games in 2015, including a huge road win at 6th ranked Warren Wilson on Feb. 11th. The team is also on pace to set school records for shooting %, 3 pt %, FT %, points per game, assists per game, points per game allowed, and fewest turnovers per game. The team has reached their highest ever USCAA Coaches' Poll ranking (5) under Coach Casciano as well. His crowning achievement to this point in the season was capturing the JWU Cup, an annual inter-campus tournament among the four JWU campuses. After defeating the Denver campus in the first round, the Wildcats handed the Providence campus, a defending NCAA D-III conference champion, their worse loss in over two years, a 90-61 drubbing in the championship game. Coach Casciano's impact has been felt off the court as well. He organized and hosted a youth clinic and pizza party with boys and girls from the Wallace Pruitt Recreation Center on November 15th. The team then visited the McCrorey YMCA on December 6th and conducted another clinic for over sixty boys and girls.
2014-15 Record: 20-11
MEN'S DIVISION II: Player of the Year
WOMEN'S DIVISION II: Student-Athlete of the Year
Alexa Schooley, Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences- Alexa is an outstanding student-athlete that excels on the court, in the classroom and holds many leadership positions on campus. She exemplifies what it means to be a student-athlete and always goes above and beyond to help others while excelling at each challenge. Phi Lambda Sigma--Pharmacy Leadership Society (2014-Present), Student Athlete Advisory Committee President (2014-2015). Led current SAAC members to complete intended activities throughout the school year. As president she organized meetings, worked with administration, and managed group activities. Schooley is a 3-time ACPHS Women's Basketball Team Captain. She organizes open gyms and team functions, peer tutoring for team members and volunteers at various camps. She served as the Colleges Against Cancer Survivorship Chair (2014-Present), Team Captain (2013-2014), Member since 2011. She takes time out to make monthly visits to Albany's HopeClub. She has organized a Relay for Life event. Alexa is the captain of an ACPHS Relay team, Hoops for Hope- Members include ACPHS Women's basketball along with former alumni. Organized basketball related events to fundraise money for Relay For Life. Alexa has participated in the October Walk for Breast Cancer. APhA- Health and Wellness Expo Coordinator (2014), MRM Fundraising Chair (2014), APhA-ASP Buddy Mentor (2014-2015) Member since 2013. Additionally, Alexa organized a 2014 Health and Wellness Event including a health fair and 5K.
WOMEN'S DIVISION II: Coach of the Year
Chris Wood, College of St. Joseph (VT)- In two years Coach Wood has taken the St. Joseph's College (VT) women's basketball team from mediocre to unbelievable. With only one impact player returning he has made this transformation with his very first true recruiting class. Coach Wood does a good job networking throughout the conference and gathering information about opponents to put himself in a position to win. The Fighting Knights also won the 2015 Yankee Small College Conference Championship.
2014-15 Record: 24-6
WOMEN'S DIVISION II: Player of the Year