GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Furman cross country/track and field All-Americans Aaron Templeton and Allie Buchalski were recognized as 2018-19 Furman Male Athlete of the Year and Edna Hartness Female Athlete of the Year, respectively, at Furman's "ESPY" style awards banquet Tuesday evening at Timmons Arena.
A native of Knoxville, Tenn., Templeton placed fifth at the 2018 NCAA Cross Country Championships, the highest finish by any Furman athlete at the national cross country meet. He was named the Southern Conference Men's Cross Country Runner of the Year for the second-consecutive year after winning the individual title and leading the Paladins to their sixth-straight conference team championship last fall. Templeton earned his third cross country all-region citation in 2018 after leading the Paladins with a third-place individual finish, qualifying for the national meet. A four-time All-SoCon honoree for cross country, he also won the 5,000m and finished second in the 1,500m at last spring's Southern Conference Outdoor Track Championships. He qualified for the NCAA East Preliminaries in the 5,000m, where he placed 17th in the event.
Buchalski was the national runner up in the 5,000m at the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, marking the highest finish by any Furman track and field athlete at the national championship meet. A seven-time All-American from Johns Creek, Ga., she passed two runners in the final 100m to finish as the national runner-up and capture her second-straight first team All-American honor in the event. Earlier in the outdoor season, she won the 1,500m at the Southern Conference Championships, setting a meet record with a time of 4:19.44, and went on to take the league title in the 5,000m. An Academic All-American, she holds Furman indoor track records in the 3,000m and 5,000m and outdoors in the 1,500m, 5,000m, and 4x800m.
Women's golfer Haylee Harford captured the Dr. Gary Clark Student-Athlete Achievement Award. A three-time All-American, she is only the 11th four-time all-conference honoree for her sport in the history of the Southern Conference. She ranks 41st nationally with a SoCon and Paladin-best 72.5 stroke average over 26 rounds. She was a runner-up at the SoCon Championships and finished in a tie for seventh at the inaugural Augusta National Women's amateur earlier this month. A 2019 Arnold Palmer Cup Team selection, Harford was member of the WGCA All-American second team in 2017. She was voted to the Golfweek All-America third team as a sophomore then earned All-American honorable mention accolades from the publication as a junior.
A health sciences major from Leavittsburg, Ohio, Harford is a member of the WGCA All-American Scholar Team, the SoCon Academic Honor Roll, and the SoCon All-Academic Team Off the course, she is active in the community and in many other campus organizations. She is involved with the Furman Fellowship of Christian Athletes, represents her team on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, and is a research volunteer in the health science department. Harford also has volunteer experience with Valiant Player Children's Hospital visits and LPGA Girls' Golf events, is a tutor at Lakeview Middle School, and has assisted at youth golf summer camps.a
Head cross country/track and field coach Robert Gary was honored as Furman's Coach of the Year after being named the Southern Conference Coach of the Year for both women's and men's cross country for the sixth-consecutive season. Under his direction, both cross country teams achieved top-20 rankings, with the women's team ranked as high as 12th nationally. The Paladin women reached the NCAA Team Championships, placing 23rd, and both the women's and men's programs produced an All-American in the fall of 2018.
Last spring, eleven Furman distance athletes in six events, the most in program history, qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships East Preliminaries, and five of those athletes advanced to the NCAA Championships. All five Paladins went on to earn All-America honors at the national meet, highlighted by Buchalski's runner up finish in the 5,000m
Football player Wade Smith, who boasts a 3.86 GPA in mathematics-economics, was the recipient of the John M. Block Academic Achievement Award, while softball player Lauren Duggar, a double major in health science and religion with a 3.92 GPA, was accorded the Elizabeth Blackwell Academic Achievement Award.
In addition, team MVPs were announced for 2017-18 spring sports and 2018-19 fall/winter sports.
Julie Paré, Furman Sports Information
Furman Athletic Department Awards
Male Athlete of the Year – Aaron Templeton
Edna Hartness Female Athlete of the Year – Allie Buchalski
Dr. Gary Clark Student-Athlete Achievement Award – Haylee Harford
Coach of the Year – Robert Gary
Elizabeth Blackwell Academic Award – Lauren Duggar
John M. Block Academic Award – Wade Smith
Female Rookie of the Year – Krissy Gear (Track & Field)
Male Rookie of the Year – Adrian Hope (Football)
Best Underdog Victory (Men's Basketball) – Win over defending national champion Villanova
Play of the Year (Men's Basketball) – Clay Mounce Game-Winning Dunk vs Loyola
Iron Paladin-- Avery Whitehead (Women's Lacrosse) and Jaylan Reid (Football)
Golden Paladin Award – Women's Cross Country & Track
Team MVPs (Spring 2018 – Winter 2019)
Women's Lacrosse (2017-18) – Meg Lingo
Men's Lacrosse (2017-18) – Alec Van de Bovenkamp
Women's Golf (2017-18) – Natalie Srinivasan
Men's Golf (2017-18) - Keller Harper
Women's Tennis (2017-18) – Carol Elizabeth Kerman
Men's Tennis (2017-18) – Drew Singerman
Baseball (2017-18) – Jabari Richards and Nik Verbeke
Softball (2017-18) - Lindsey Bert
Women's Outdoor Track (2017-18) – Allie Buchalski
Men's Outdoor Track (2017-18) – Frank Lara
Women's Cross Country (2018-19) – Savannah Carnahan
Men's Cross Country (2018-19) – Aaron Templeton
Football (2018-19) – Harris Roberts and Jaylan Reid
Women's Soccer (2018-19) – Jordan Evens
Men's Soccer (2018-19) – Ben Hale
Volleyball (2018-19) – Carris Campbell
Women's Indoor Track (2018-19) – Gabrielle Jennings
Men's Indoor Track (2018-19) – Ryan Adams
Women's Basketball (2018-19) – Tierra Hodges
Men's Basketball (2018-19) – Matt Rafferty