Oregon Sports Awards: Chip Kelly named Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year

Oregon Sports Awards: Chip Kelly named Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year

BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) — Olympic gold medalists Ashton Eaton and Megan Rapinoe were honored Sunday night at the 61st annual Oregon Sports Awards.

Eaton, who grew up in Bend, broke the world record in the decathlon at the U.S. Olympic track trials in Eugene last summer before claiming the gold medal in the multi-event discipline at the London Games.

Rapinoe, who played at the University of Portland, was on the U.S. women's soccer team that beat Japan for the gold medal at the Olympic Games.

Oregon running back Kenjon Barner and Ducks volleyball player Liz Brenner won the Bill Hayward Amateur Athlete of the Year honors.

Thomas Tyner, a running back at Aloha High School, and Gresham High's Haley Crouser, the national junior record holder in the javelin, were named the Class 6A prep athletes of the year at the ceremony at the Tiger Woods Center on Nike's Beaverton headquarters.

Former Oregon coach Chip Kelly and Miami Heat coach Eric Spoelstra were co-winners of the Slats Gill Sportsman of the Year award. Kelly stepped down as the Ducks' coach last month to become head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Barner was a senior on the Oregon Ducks team that went 12-1 and capped the season with a victory over Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl. He ran for 1,295 yards and 19 touchdowns.

Brenner, who grew up in Portland and went to Jesuit, plays basketball in addition to volleyball. Last year she also played on the Ducks' softball team that went to the College World Series, and this season she plans to throw shot put and javelin on the track team. She is an outside hitter on the volleyball team that went all the way to the NCAA championship game against Penn State.

Tyner, who recently signed his letter of intent to play for the Ducks, rushed for 3,415 yards as a senior, setting a new single single-season rushing record for the state. On his 18th birthday last September, Tyner set a state record with 643 yards rushing and scored 10 touchdowns in an 84-63 victory over Lakeridge High School. It was the third-most ever for a prep player.

Crouser holds the U.S. junior record in the javelin and placed seventh at last year's Olympic trials in Eugene. She also has committed to play for the Ducks.

Newport High's Oshay Dunmore and Heppner High's Baily Bennett, who both participate in multiple sports, were named the lower-division prep athletes of the year.

Other winners Sunday night included Danny Miles, who is in his 42nd season as basketball coach at Oregon Institute of Technology. The Hustlin' Owls won the NAIA II National Championship last year, their third title under Miles.

Miles was given the DNA Award for extraordinary passion and dedication to sport in Oregon.

"Always follow your dreams. It doesn't matter what level you play. Play as hard as you can," Miles told the crowd.

The small college athletes of the year were Linfield softball player Staci Doucette and Southern Oregon University wrestler Mitch Lofstedt. Springfield High's Mercedes Russell and Lake Oswego's Calvin Hermanson were names the top prep basketball players.

Other prep winners included swimmers Sarah Kaunitz of Lake Oswego and Cameron Stitt of Sunset, wrestler Zac Brunson of Churchill High, baseball player Carson Kelly of Westview, South Salem High softball player Maryssa Becker, tennis players Erin Larner of Jesuit and Goutham Sundaram of Lincoln, golfers Gigi Stoll of Beaverton and Sulman Raza of South Eugene High, soccer players Ariel Viera of Scappoose and Christo Michaelson of Jesuit, volleyball player Tani Stevens of West Albany, and cross country runners Sara Tsai of South Eugene and Travis Neuman of Summit.

The George Pasero Award for the state's top teams was shared by the Oregon Institute of Technology men's basketball team. The Blue Mountain Community College volleyball team, Oregon's acrobatics and tumbling team, and the women's track and cross country teams from Oregon.

Dony Knight won the Special Olympics athlete of the year while Bobbie Steninger, longtime Lakeview track coach, won the Game Changer award for dedication to prep sports.