Three Thomas Nelson Community College students were selected for the 2016-17 Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) Academic All-State team. Robert Edwards, Desiree Jones and Reece Walton were among 223 selectees representing 38 Virginia colleges and universities.
Athletes eligible for the recognition must be sophomores, or higher, and have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.25, according to VaSID officials.
Edwards, a Hampton resident, wrapped up his Thomas Nelson baseball career this year and was named to the National Junior College Athletic Association’s (NJCAA) Division III All-Region 10 first team for the second consecutive year. He will attend Roanoke College in the fall upon completing remaining credits for an Associate of Science in Business Administration.
A 2017 graduate, Jones received an Associate of Science in Social Science and is transferring to Old Dominion University. The Newport News resident played guard/small forward for the Lady Gators having begun her college basketball career at Thomas Nelson in 2014.
Walton is an Engineering major who attended Ashland’s Randolph-Macon College upon graduating from Nansemond-Suffolk Academy in 2014. A Portsmouth resident, he plays pitcher and third baseman for Thomas Nelson’s baseball squad.
According to Athletics and Intramurals Coordinator Chad Smith, Thomas Nelson is expanding its NJCAA membership to include women’s basketball next year. Read more here in the Daily Press. After several years as club team, the baseball team became the College’s first NJCAA-member sport last year with a move to Region 10, Division III. “[VaSID recognition] for our student-athletes really illustrates how athletics and academics are a good combination toward graduation success. When students are engaged both academically and athletically, it yields positive results for not only the students, but for the College and the community. Students graduating high school will consider enrolling at Thomas Nelson to play their particular sport and obtain their degree,” he said.
VaSID consists of sports information or athletics communications professionals from intercollegiate institutions throughout Virginia. Membership is open to anyone affiliated with Virginia institutions at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I, Division II, Division III, National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, United States Collegiate Athletic Association, NJCAA, community college and independent levels, provided that individual's area of responsibility lies within the realm of sports information.