"I''ve had the opportunity to live two dreams," departing Bluefield State College women's basketball coach Tom Jessee noted. "I got a college education, then I became a head basketball coach. I'll always have experiences as a former student, athlete, and coach at Bluefield State that I will cherish in the years to come."
Jessee's comments highlighted BSCÕs annual athletics awards banquet, April 30 at the College. His Lady Blues won four WVIAC championships and his teams reached the NAIA National Tournament in 1985 & Ô93. He coached the Lady Blues to a record of 177-85, including a 136-47 mark in the West Virginia Intercollegiate Conference.
Representatives of the coaching staff for each of the nine intercollegiate sports programs (men's and women's basketball, cross country, and tennis, as well as men's golf and baseball, along with women's softball) and cheerleading squad at BSC presented awards and recognized individual members of their teams. Cross country standout Bev Stepp and Wendy Black received All-WVIAC honors. Stepp has earned all-conference recognition in each of her three seasons at BSC.
Golfers Bill Eaton and Casey Cure, who finished ninth and 17th among 58 golfers in the conference championship were also recognized. Pitcher Keith Bryant was cited as an all-conference candidate in the soon to be named all-WVIAC baseball team, and J.T. Bradley received varsity letters in three sports (basketball, tennis, and cross country).
Men's basketball coach Terry Brown displayed the "WVIAC Sportsmanship Award," presented to this year's Big Blues' team after a vote of basketball officials in the conference. Jessee noted that this year's Lady Blues' team ranked first in the nation in defense, limiting opponents to less than 40% shooting from the floor. Two graduating basketball team members, Cortina Heartwell and Donna Gardner, both of whom scored over 1000 points in their college careers, were also extended special recognition during the program.