Murphy, Blackledge win Jostens Trophy

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The 2017 Jostens Trophy recipients are Hope's Harrison Blackledge and Carnegie Mellon's Lisa Murphy.

Awards season for NCAA Division III women's and men's basketball continued on Tuesday afternoon with the announcement of the 2017 Jostens Trophy recipients. Carnegie Mellon's Lisa Murphy and Hope's Harrison Blackledge are honored with this season's top awards, which recognize outstanding student-athletes in Division III basketball for excellence in the classroom, on the court, and in their respective communities.

The winners were chosen from a list of 20 finalists by a national selection committee that consists of college coaches, former athletes, college administrators and selected members of the media. The members of the national selection committee cast their votes based on three criteria: basketball ability, academic prowess, and community service.

A native of McLean, Va., Lisa Murphy established herself as the best player in Carnegie Mellon history and one of the best in UAA women's basketball.  Murphy is the UAA career scoring leader with 2,306 points. She averaged more than 20 points and 10 rebounds in 2016-17, while leading the nation in field goal percentage for the third consecutive year.  She is one of only eight players in Division III history to record 2,000 career points, 1,000 career rebounds, and 200 career blocks.  Murphy was named a First Team All-American in 2016,  the UAA Player of the Year in 2016 and 2017 and the 2017 Great Lakes Region Player of the Year.

One of the most impressive feats of Murphy's career at Carnegie Mellon is the transformation of the basketball program.  In 2015-16 she helped lead the program to its first winning season since 2002-03.  In her four years, the Tartans were a combined 61-40, compared to a 33-68 record the four years prior.

In the classroom, Murphy maintains a 3.84 cumulative grade point average as a psychology major.  She is the vice president of Psi Chi, the psychology honor society, and she was elected to the academic honor society, Phi Beta Kappa.  

Murphy has also been very active in the community.  As a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council, she has led initiatives such as the annual Field Day and Thanksgiving food drives.  She also organized and ran a 3v3 event for Special Olympics, which included managing more than 100 athletes, parents and coaches.  Murphy helps clean up local trails along the riverfront and she has joined forces with First Trinity Homeless Ministry to deliver lunches to the homeless near campus.

Harrison Blackledge, a native of Canton, Ohio, led the Hope Flying Dutchmen in scoring with 20 points per game and was second with 5.9 rebounds per game.  He was an efficient scorer converting 56.9-percent of his field goals, 40-percent of his three-point attempts and 79.9-percent of his free throws.  He sits in the Hope records charts with the third-most career made free throws (447) and attempted free throws (571), and he ranks tenth all-time in career field goal percentage (.542). His 601 points this season rank third all-time among Flying Dutchmen players.

Blackledge was presented with the MIAA Most Valuable Player award after finishing the year ranked third in scoring, twelfth in rebounding and fifth in field goal percentage for the conference.  He scored in double figures in 28 of 30 games this season and led the Flying Dutchman to the sectional semifinal of the NCAA tournament.

In the classroom, Blackledge maintains a 3.91 cumulative grade point average as a communications and management major.  He has also has done extensive work in the community.  For the past four years he has taught basketball to underprivileged students in the community.  He also worked at the local Ronald McDonald House, after-school enrichment programs, and with Special Olympics and the Miracle League.  He also serves as a counselor at the Summer's Best Two Weeks Camp where he mentors students.

The Jostens Trophy is a joint creation of Jostens, Inc., of Minneapolis, Minn., and the Rotary Club of Salem, Va. The purpose of the award is to honor the true Division III student-athlete - the athlete that shows excellence in the classroom, on the playing floor and in the community. In addition to the Trophy, the Wooldridge Scholarship, a $1,000 donation, will be presented in the names of the winners to their institutions. The scholarship was named after Dan Wooldridge, a Salem Rotarian and retired Commissioner of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference, as a way of honoring him for his long-time dedication to Division III athletics.

All-time Jostens Trophy winners

Year Men Women
1998 Michael Nogelo, Williams Alicia Moore, Emory
1999 Michael Shantz, Hamilton Kristen Venne, Susquehanna
2000 Korey Coon, Illinois Wesleyan Alia Fischer, Washington U.
2001 David Jannuzzi, Wilkes Alison Grubbs, Lake Forest
2002 Adam Jones, Buena Vista Heather Kile, Swarthmore
2003 Derek Reich, Chicago Whitney Bull, Wilkes
2004 Justin Call, Emory and Henry Kay Mikolajczak, UW-Oshkosh
2005 Jon-David Byers, Lebanon Valley Tara Rohde, Trinity (Texas)
2006 Chris Braier, Lawrence Megan Silva, Randolph-Macon
2007 Ryan Cain, WPI Lisa Winkle, Calvin
2008 Troy Ruths, Washington U. Tarra Richardson, McMurry
2009 Jimmy Bartolotta, MIT Melanie Auguste, Colorado College
2010 Blake Schultz, Williams Julia Hirssig, UW-Stout
2011 Steve Djurickovic, Carthage Elizabeth Sunderhaus, Cedar Crest
2012 Aris Wurtz, Ripon Taylor Simpson, Chicago
2013 Colton Hunt, Randolph Carissa Verkaik, Calvin
2014 Richie Bonney, Hobart Katelyn Fischer, Marymount
2015 George Bugarinovic, Johns Hopkins Jess Rheinheimer, Eastern Mennonite
2016 Trey Bardsley, Nebraska Wesleayn Holly Denfield, Milwaukee Engineering
2017 Harrison Blackledge, Hope Lisa Murphy, Carnegie Mellon
Winners by conference
  CC 1, CCIW 2, IIAC 1, IND 1, LL 1,
MACC 1, MACF 1, MIAA 1, MWC 2, 

ASC 1, CAC 1, CC 1, CSAC 1,
MACC 1, MACF 1, MIAA 2, MWC 1,