Preview: Greater Wichita Sports Banquet

Published On: Jun 25 2014 10:25:28 AM CDT

For the 17th year the Greater Wichita Sports Banquet will reward Wichita-area athletes at the High School, College and Professional levels for their accomplishments in sports.

Bob Hanson is the President and CEO of the Wichita Sports Commission and he believes that sport plays an important part in the community.

“Our community gets a great deal of recognition [from this banquet],’” Hanson said.

The event will begin with a reception and silent auction at 6pm on June 26th at the Hyatt Regency Wichita, and the banquet will start at 7:15 p.m.

The night’s keynote speaker will be former Denver Bronco defensive lineman, Karl Mecklenburg. Mecklenburg appeared in three Super Bowls and six Pro Bowl selections. He’s known for being able to play seven different defensive positions in the NFL, meaning all the linebacker and defensive lineman positions.

The night will conclude with the Johnny Bench Award, which recognizes the best catcher in Division I college baseball.

Many prestigious names have been honored by the Johnny Bench Award over the years, including a World Series Champion.

“Buster Posey was [nominated] twice,” Hanson said. “He was runner up one year and won it the next.”

The nominees for the June 26th banquet are below:

Barry Sanders High School Male Athlete of the Year

Jeremy Dunham, Derby

Ryan Schadler, Hesston

Sam Stevens, Kapaun Mt. Carmel

Lynette Woodard High School Female Athlete of the Year

Sydney Kuhn, Kapaun Mt. Carmel

Skyler Snodgrass, Andover Central

Bryna Vogel, Clearwater

College Male Athlete of the Year

Cleanthony Early, Wichita State

Seth Holman, Cowley College

Evan Koehler, Butler

Joe Mitchell, Friends

Lorenzo Serna, Newman

College Female Athlete of the Year

Chelsey Feekin, Wichita State

Jamesia Milton, Cowley College

Sarah Munds, Friends

Kirstie Symon, Newman

Elle Stein, Pratt

Madison Wedekind, Butler

Professional Athlete of the Year

Brent Hobson, B-52's

Andrew Martens, Thunder

Matt Moss, Wild

C.J. Ziegler, Wingnuts

Johnny Bench National Collegiate Catcher of the Year

Will Allen, University of Mississippi

Max Pentecost, Kennesaw State University

Kyle Schwarber, Indiana University