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May 8, 2023




Wharton County Junior College athletes were recognized for their outstanding efforts during a recent ceremony held on the Wharton campus. From left are volleyball player Freedom Stephenson of Santa Fe, the volleyball team's Most Valuable Player; baseball player Brayden Evans of Pearland, the 2023 Dr. Ty Pate Academic Award recipient; volleyball player Kiah Barron of Corpus Christi, the 2023 Johnnie Frankie Award recipient; and rodeo team member Rylee Reina of Wharton, the rodeo team's Most Valuable Player (female). 


WHARTON, TEXAS – Athletes from Wharton County Junior College’s three sports teams were recognized during the Spring 2023 semester for outstanding efforts both on and off the playing field.

During the WCJC Athletic Awards Luncheon – held earlier this spring in the Pioneer Student Center on the Wharton campus – presentations were made to top players who distinguished themselves on the field of competition as well as in the classroom.

Baseball player Brayden Evans of Pearland received the Dr. Ty Pate Academic Award, an honor established in the memory of the late WCJC administrator and former athlete that recognizes high academic achieving athletes. Evans played first base and outfield for the Pioneers and will continue his baseball career at Baylor University in Waco.

The Johnnie Frankie Award, a special honor for athletes who exhibit exceptional abilities and character, went to volleyball player Kiah Barron of Corpus Christi.  Barron was a middle blocker for the Pioneers and has signed a letter of intent to continue her career at Jarvis Christian College in Hawkins. Jenny Banker, daughter of the late WCJC coach Johnnie Frankie, presented the award along with her grandson, Michael Frankie.

Athletes recognized for other honors included:

  • Freedom Stephenson of Santa Fe (volleyball) – Volleyball MVP, Region XIV 2nd Team All-Conference, Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Rylee Reina of Wharton (rodeo) – Rodeo MVP Female
  • Logan Moore of Pleasanton (rodeo) – Rodeo MVP Male
  • Tori Arrington of Boling (volleyball) – Volleyball Region XIV 1st Team All-Conference
  • Rebekah Wilks of San Antonio (volleyball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Valerie Martinez of Corpus Christi (volleyball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Brooke Johnson of Forney (volleyball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Ryan Melcher of Giddings (volleyball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Georgia Vance of Hardin (volleyball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Aiden Huerta of Katy (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Brayden Evans of Pearland (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Ryan Pehrson of Southlake (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Blaise Wilcenski of Waterford, Mich. (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Keaten Hawk of Danbury (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team
  • Kamron Snodgrass of Corpus Christi (baseball) – Region XIV All-Academic Team

For event photos, click on the link below:

2023 Athletic Awards



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