GAC announces fall sportsmanship awards

Jan. 19—RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. — The Great American Conference announced its sportsmanship awards for the six fall 2023 sports on Thursday. The league's head coaches chose the Team Sportsmanship Awards, based on a point system.

Ouachita Baptist paced the way with three Sportsmanship awards. The Tigers won their third consecutive award for men's cross country and its second straight on the women's side. They added a third honor for football, the first since 2015.

Harding collected its 10th Sportsmanship Award for women's soccer. Southwestern Oklahoma State claimed its fourth straight in volleyball and Fort Hays State garnered the accolade in men's soccer for the third time in the last four seasons.

"These awards emphasize the NCAA Division II focus on sportsmanship and game environment," GAC Commissioner Will Prewitt said. "We could not be prouder of what these programs have put forth on the field and in ways that aren't necessarily reflected in the outcome."

In 2012, The GAC's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee initiated a sportsmanship award to be presented for all team sports. The winning school will receive a banner similar to the one presented to GAC tournament championship winners. The goal of the program is for member institutions to promote good sportsmanship among their teams, fans, and all involved with the events.