On Friday, July 14, the Grand City Sports Organization hosted its first annual City of Champions Youth Sports & Academic Awards at the Wealthy Theatre.
There were 31 award categories presented at the star-studded event that featured NFL athletes, All-Americans, future leaders and local sports supporters as well as family and friends of the honorees.
Here are the winners of the first annual 2017 City of Champions Youth Sports & Academic Awards who were recognized at the Peter M. Wege Auditorium:
Lifetime Achievement Award – Patricia Pulliam
Soccer Player of the Year – Maia Perez
HS Hockey Player of the Year – Zak Currie
Golf Athlete of the Year – Zach Robbins
HS Baseball Player of the Year – Noah Bloye
HS Wrestler of the Year #1 – Pat Deplazza
HS Wrestler of the Year #2 – Lucus Pienton
MMA Fighter of the Year – Cody Stamann
Youth Fighter of the Year – Sidario Mitchell
Female Youth Fighter of the Year – Josie Gonzales
Youth Wrestler of the Year – Tiny Grant
2017 Hall of Fame Class – Rick Rasberry, Paul Collins, MarandaTV, Peter Stuursma, Brian Kelly, Justin Jennings, Security Stokes, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Ruth Jones, Rev Clifton Rhodes
Best Girls AAU Program – GR Phoenix Girls
HS Defensive Player of the Year – David Fox
HS Girls Basketball Player of the Year – Amari Brown
HS Female Track Athlete of the Year – Jakarri Alven
HS Male Track Athlete of the Year – Khance Meyers
Boxer of the Year – Joseph Hicks
All-American Youth – Noah Obaeski
Best Youth Baseball Team – Plaster Creek/Grand City Allstars
Honorary Legacy Award – Grand City All Stars 2x National Champions
Best AAU Team #1 – Fly High
College Basketball Player of the Year – Jeffrey Drake-Todd
College Football Player of the Year – Donte Carey
Best Youth Football Program – West MI Rampage
Best AAU Team #2 – GR Ballers
HS Basketball Player of the Year – Marcus Bingham Jr.
HS Football Player of the Year – Susu Davenport
Outstanding Achievement Award Class of 2017 – Peter Quillin, David Harris, Don Carey, Cameron Bradfield, Carlton Brewster, Terna Nande, Rueben Riley, Kavon Frazier, Devin Booker, Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Academic Youth Scholars Awards Recipients – Cody Garrison, Mekhi Jennings, Laciana Gonzalez, Zsana Hoskins
Pioneer of the Year Award – Jimmy Carter
Co-Founder of Grand City Sports and Grand Rapids Community College Coordinator of Retention, Chris Sain Jr., was pleased with the first ever awards show.
”It was an awesome turnout,” Sain Jr. said, adding that he was “very excited about the community that came out to support the first year. I believe it’s only going to get bigger and better moving forward.”
A local NFL star also weighed in on the event:
“This was a great event,” said Patriots Linebacker David Harris. “It was a great turn out, I’ve seen some faces that I haven’t seen in a long time and it was great for me to get some recognition and to see the youth get some recognition as well. They are the future leaders of our community and this event got them off to a great start.”
Harris went on to express his feelings about the Grand City organization as a whole.
“I’ve been knowing Chris since I was 11 years old and his organization is doing a fabulous job,” said Harris, who is a Grand Rapids native, that graduated from Ottawa Hills High School. “They do so much great work in the community and they deserve the praise and recognition they get as well. Anything that they do, I support it 100 percent. Doing events like this means a lot to me.”