Athlete of Year nominees sought

The Advocate is accepting nominations for its Athlete of the Year awards.

Schools in the metro Baton Rouge area are asked to nominate their top male and female athletes by either fax or email by April 30. Nominees must have a 2.5 grade-point average or better and should be on track to meet the NCAA’s academic qualifying standards.

This will mark the 28th year that Capital City Press has honored the area’s top athletes. In addition to honoring the top overall athletes, athletes who excelled in a wide range of high school sports will be honored during a May banquet.

Schools should provide a list of the accomplishments and statistics. Fax nominations to (225) 388-0318. Send emails to rfambrough@theadvocate.com.

Playoffs, championships

The Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s bowling finals are set for Friday at Acadiana Lanes in Lafayette.

The LHSAA also will announce its softball playoff pairings this week. Baton Rouge’s Boys Metro Golf Tournament will tee off Wednesday at Beaver Creek Golf Course.

Farris honored

John Curtis girls basketball coach Barbara Farris was one of four women nominated last week for their work in the New Orleans community in conjunction with the NCAA Women’s Final Four.

Farris, a former St. Martin’s and Tulane standout, enjoyed a long WNBA career before getting into coaching. Her team was the Class 2A runner-up to St. Thomas Aquinas last month.

Also honored for her charity work was another former St. Martin’s standout, Ashley Tappin-Dousson, a swimmer who won four Olympic gold medals.

Thomas featured in SI

Former Scotlandville and Istrouma High offensive lineman Dallas Thomas, of Tennessee, is one of seven linemen featured in a Sports Illustrated story that examines how the read option might be changing the way big linemen are viewed.

Thomas, who was listed at 6-foot-5, 306 pounds, was listed along with Louisiana Tech’s Jordan Mills as a potential pick in the top six rounds. Thomas was considered a prototype of a tackle who enters the draft at less than 325 pounds.

Recruiting etc.

Central baseball player Travis Stevens signed with LSU-Alexandria last week at the school. Also, McKinley High girls basketball player Brianna Brown is scheduled to sign with Angelina Junior College in Texas.

Stevens, a three-year starter, is an infielder and pitcher. He plans to major in business administration. Brown was District 5-5A MVP and averaged 17 points and six rebounds.

Courter excels

Former Episcopal standout Neal Courter, of William & Mary, won two events at the USA Gymnastics Collegiate National Championships.

Courter won the vault and floor exercise and also placed on the high bar to garner All-American honors. He scored a 14.950 in the floor exercise and had a 15.200 on the vault.

Later this month, Courter, a W&M freshman, will compete in the NCAA Championships.

Prep notables

Denham Springs High girls basketball players Caletria Curtis and Carlisha Kinchen were inadvertently omitted from the list of honorable mention selections on the Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Class 5A all-state girls basketball team.

Curtis averaged 11.3 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. Kinchen averaged 10.2 points and 5.4 rebounds.

Former Southern University football player Jacobi Thierry is the new football coach at Class 1A North Central in St. Landry Parish.