Bennett Chosen for Booth Award, Daniel Receives Williams Award

Willamette Honors Seniors at Athletics Awards Night

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Parker Bennett (Sr., Sisters, OR/Sisters HS) from the men's cross country and track and field teams, and Bekah Daniel (Jr., Silverdale, WA/Central Kitsap HS) from the women's track and field team, were honored as the top senior student-athletes at Willamette University during the 2013-14 Athletics Awards Night on Monday, April 28 at Cone Field House.

Bennett received the J.H. Booth Award as the top senior male student-athlete. Daniel was selected for the Jean Williams Award as the top senior female student-athlete.

All of the senior student-athletes at Willamette were honored by the Athletics Department. Athletes with four full seasons on an intercollegiate team received the traditional Willamette blanket by Pendleton, while students with less than four seasons on a team received a framed Willamette letter award. In addition, several special awards were presented.

J. Henry Booth Award

The Booth Award is presented annually by the Willamette University Athletics Department to a graduating senior male student-athlete who has developed and demonstrated strong leadership skills and outstanding athleticism, while maintaining a high rank of scholarship during his collegiate career.

Bennett earned All-America honors by placing 32nd at the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships in 2013. He also competed at the NCAA meet in 2011 and 2012.

He won NWC individual cross country titles in 2012 and 2013 while helping the Bearcats win team championships both seasons. He was named All-Academic three times by the USTFCCCA in cross country.

In track and field, Bennett won the 5,000-meter championship at the 2013 NWC meet and placed second in the NWC in the 5,000 this spring.

He worked at Sinethemba Children’s Home in South Africa while studying abroad in the spring of 2013. He helped children with English-related homework and education skills. He also worked with Ten Friends in Nepal to support schools and orphanages.

At Willamette, Bennett is majoring in Exercise Science and owns a 3.52 cumulative grade point average. He received a Ford Family Foundation Scholarship.

Jean Williams Award

The Williams Award is presented annually by the Willamette University Athletics Department to a graduating senior female student-athlete who has developed and demonstrated strong leadership skills and outstanding athleticism, while maintaining a high rank of scholarship during her collegiate career.

Daniel earned All-NWC honors seven times in track and field. She won two titles in the triple jump in 2013 and 2014, and ran on Willamette's 4 x 400-meter relay team that took first place in 2013. She placed third in the long jump and the heptathlon this season, was third in the 100-meter hurdles in 2013, and placed second on the 4 x 100-meter relay team in 2012.

She is second all-time at Willamette in the triple jump at 37' 8", the heptathlon at 4,411 points and the 4 x 100 relay at 49.00 seconds. In addition, she is fourth in the 100-meter hurdles in 15.12 seconds and is sixth in the long jump at 17' 8". She has received USTFCCCA All-Academic status twice.

Also, she was an Opening Days leader at WU and coordinated Students Against Slavery. She reads to Grant Elementary students and works with Stitch’s Young Adults Community, Burkina Faso and the Community Action Agency.

At Willamette, Daniel has earned several scholarships and awards, including the William H. Webber Scholarship and the Phil Hanni Scholarship. She received a grant in the Science Collaborative Research Program. She has achieved a 3.93 cumulative GPA and is majoring in Physics.

Additional Honors and Awards

The Willamette Athletics Department honored all 61 of its seniors during the Athletics Awards Night. In addition, Willamette paid tribute to all student-athletes who have achieved a 3.5 or higher cumulative GPA. A total of 75 Bearcats -- from freshmen to seniors -- achieved Scholar Student-Athlete status.

Former Bearcat baseball player and current Arizona Diamondbacks groundskeeper Grant Trenbeath ('93) was named Alumnus of the Year. Lonnie Swihart and Donna Kebekol from Facilities Services Department were selected to receive the Sue J. Rauch Distinguished Service to Willamette Athletics Award. Dr. Naveed Ali from the Mathematics Department was selected for the Julie Abendroth, Ed. D., Professor of the Year Award.

Daniel was recognized as the Women's Senior Scholar-Athlete and Cuyler Hudson (Sr., OL, Leavenworth, WA/Cascade HS) from the football team was honored as the Men's Senior Scholar-Athlete for having the highest cumulative grade point averages among the graduating seniors.

PHOTOS ON FACEBOOK

Willamette University
Athletics Awards Night
April 28, 2014
At Cone Field House
Salem, Ore.

Parker Bennett, who earned All-America status at the NCAA Cross Country Championships last fall, was chosen as the winner of the J.H. Booth Award.

Parker Bennett, who earned All-America status at the NCAA Cross Country Championships last fall, was chosen as the winner of the J.H. Booth Award.

Bekah Daniel, who won the 2013 and 2014 NWC titles in the triple jump, was selected for the Jean Williams Award.

Bekah Daniel, who won the 2013 and 2014 NWC titles in the triple jump, was selected for the Jean Williams Award.