BC's Celen, W&L's Beck Take Home Major Honors
FOREST, Va. --- Two of the ODAC's charter member schools feature in the season's final honors as Bridgewater College and Washington and Lee University student-athletes garnered the Marjorie Berkley and Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Scholar-Athlete Awards in a vote of the league's Board of Directors. Bridgewater track & field multi-athlete Amber Celen earned the Berkley Award, while Washington and Lee soccer goalkeeper Gillen Beck received the Jopson Award.
Celen is the fifth overall Eagle to earn the conference's top women's award and first BC standout to earn the laurel since Christina Rhodes in 2011. Beck brings the Generals league-best tally of Jopson Award winners to 14. Beck is the third General to earn the men's high honor in the past four years. He also marks the fifth straight year W&L has had either a Berkley or Jopson honoree.
Inaugurated in 1984 and 1981, respectively, the Marjorie Berkley and Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Scholar-Athlete Awards are given each spring to member institution seniors and conference sport participants who exhibit the highest athletic, academic, and extracurricular achievements. Ms. Berkley began her collegiate teaching career at Lynchburg College. Several years later, she moved to Hollins University where she coached tennis, field hockey, and soccer, and served as the athletic director for 30 years. The Jopson Award is named in honor of the Bridgewater College professor and coach who retired in 1981 following 45 years at BC. Dr. Jopson, who initiated and directed the Eagles' cross country and track programs, led his teams to ODAC indoor track titles in 1979, 1980 and 1981, and outdoor crowns from 1978 through 1981.
RELATED: All-Time Berkley and Jopson Award Winners
Celen, from Townsend, Del., put together a storied career for the Eagles indoor and outdoor track & field programs. She graduated as an 11-time All-American -- a Bridgewater school-record -- thru her sprinting and jumping exploits that included three three national championships during her junior campaign. She won both the 60-meter and 200-meter dash championships indoors and the 100-meter dash title outdoors in 2017. She collected six of 11 high-honors that season, adding the long jump to her 60-meter and 200-meter sprint awards indoors and 200-meter and long jump to her 100-meter sprint efforts outdoors. She was named the indoor National Athlete of the Year in 2017 by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCA).
The Geisert Senior Scholar-Athlete of the Year graduates with her name etched next to eight ODAC records including six from her indoor track career. Indoors, she holds the 200-meter dash overall (24.15) and championship (24.92) marks, with the former time set at the national championships in 2017. She also owns both records in the 60-meter hurdles (8.95) and the long jump (5.89 meters; 19-4.00). Outdoors, Celen is the overall standard bearer in the 100-meter (11.63) and 200-meter (23.87) dashes.
In the classroom, Celen recently earned her third straight appointment to the Google Cloud Academic All-District Women's Track/Cross Country Team, as selected by CoSIDA. This honor makes her eligible for Academic All-America consideration, which is announced on June 8 by CoSIDA. She has earned that distinction each of the past two season. Celen's nomination is bolstered by her membership in six different honor societies -- Alpha Chi (general scholarship), Philomathes (learning), Lambda Pi Eta (communications), Psi Chi (psychology), Alpha Psi Omega (theatre), and Omicron Delta Kappa (leadership) honor societies.
Celen owns a 4.0 grade point average as a sociology and communications major, helping her earn the USTFCCCA National Scholar-Athlete of the Year honor for 2016-17. She earned four ODAC/Virginia Farm Bureau Insurance Scholar-Athlete Awards, each coming for indoor and outdoor track the past two seasons. At the 2018 NCAA Championships, Celen received the Elite 90 Award, which honors the student-athlete with the highest GPA competing at each finals' site of the NCAA's 90 championships.
Beck, a native of Blacksburg, Va., has starred on and off the field as well. The Generals #1 goalkeeper each of the past three seasons helped lead the squad to the ODAC title in 2015 and three straight NCAA Division III Tournament berths each of the past three years. Those NCAA qualifications are the program's first since 2000, its only other entry.
The Generals team captain and four-year letterwinner appeared on each of the past three All-ODAC lists, earning First Team honors in 2015 to go with a Second Team selection in 2016 and a Third Team honor in 2017. He leaves Washington and Lee ranked third in program history with a 0.88 career goals-against average to go with a .793 save percentage. His 16 career shutouts tie for third all-time at W&L. He was twice named an All-South Region honoree by the United Soccer Coaches (USC).
In the classroom, Beck owns a 3.96 grade point average as a mathematics and physics double-major, helping him earn the William D. McHenry Award as the top male scholar-athlete at Washington and Lee. His academic honors don't stop there as he was awarded a NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship in March, making him the 22nd General to receive the distinction over the past 15 years. The NCAA awards up to 174 such honors each year -- 87 each for women and men.
Beck earned each of the past two ODAC/Virginia Farm Bureau Insurance Scholar-Athlete Awards for men's soccer. A two-time Google Cloud Academic All-District honoree, Beck took that one step further this fall with an appointment to the Google Cloud Academic All-America Second Team. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa (academic), Omicron Delta Kappa (leadership), Phi Mu Epsilon (mathematics), Sigma Pi Sigma (physics), and Phi Eta Sigma (first-year) honor societies.
2018 Marjorie Berkley Award Nominees
Amber Celen, Bridgewater | Indoor/Outdoor Track & Field
Leah Elswick, Emory & Henry | Softball
Emily Maxwell, Lynchburg | Soccer
Erin Quinn, Randolph-Macon | Volleyball
Laura Sullivan, Roanoke | Soccer
Elizabeth Pardo, Shenandoah | Field Hockey/Tennis
Emily Perszyk, Washington and Lee | Basketball
2018 Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Award Nominees
Blake Mann, Bridgewater | Lacrosse
Michael LoGrande, Emory & Henry | Cross Country
Ian Levin, Hampden-Sydney | Lacrosse
Cole Migliorini, Randolph-Macon | Baseball
Nick Tadros, Roanoke | Soccer
Gillen Beck, Washington and Lee | Soccer