W&J Announces Cooper and Salvitti Senior Athlete Award Winners
WASHINGTON, Pa. -- Washington & Jefferson College Director of Athletics Bill Dukett announced the athletic department’s prestigious Walter C. Cooper and E. Ronald Salvitti, M.D., senior athlete awards on Friday.
All-Region baseball pitcher Dave Trushel (Bethel Park, Pa./Bethel Park) and All-America diver Bethany Haver (Akron, Ohio/Harvey S. Firestone) were chosen as the Walter C. Cooper award winners, while track & field standout/football quarterback Taylor Hockman (Martinsburg, W.Va./Hedgesville) and field hockey goalie Shelby Colyer (Oxford, Ohio/Talawanda) were selected as the E. Ronald Salvitti, M.D. Scholar Athletes.
The top male and female senior athletes from each school year are presented with the Walter C. Cooper Senior Athlete Awards. A 1950 W&J graduate, Cooper has long been recognized as one of the top athletes in Washington & Jefferson College history. He teamed with “Deacon” Dan Towler to form one of the most feared backfields in all of college football during the mid-1900s. Cooper was a member of the “Four Gazelles,” the talented W&J running backs from 1949, considered the nation’s fastest tandem. Also an accomplished track and field star, Cooper was one of the top five sprinters in the east. Dr. Cooper, who was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000, serves on the College’s Board of Trustees.
The E. Ronald Salvitti, M.D. Senior Scholar-Athlete Awards are named in honor of the 1959 W&J graduate and 2002 Athletic Hall of Fame inductee. The awards celebrate the careers of a male and female senior who demonstrated excellence on the field and in the classroom as Presidents. Salvitti was a four-year letter winner for the Washington & Jefferson basketball program in the late 1950s. He has been an active member in the W&J community since graduation, including serving on the College’s Board of Trustees. In 1999, Salvitti was selected as W&J’s Entrepreneur of the Year. Dr. Salvitti is the medical director at the Southwestern Pennsylvania Eye Surgery Center in Washington, Pa.
Trushel compiled one of the top statistical seasons in W&J baseball history this spring, leading the Presidents to their third NCAA Tournament appearance during the past four seasons and earning nine of W&J’s school-record 36 victories. The 2012 PAC Pitcher of the Year finished second all-time in school history with 25 victories, 158 strikeouts, 266.2 innings pitched and 11 complete games. He is the Presidents’ career leader with 53 appearances.
Haver wrapped up a record-breaking diving career with her third and fourth All-America awards at the NCAA Division III Championships this winter in Indianapolis. In both 2011 and 2012, the three-time PAC Diver of the Year qualified for the finals on both the 1-meter and 3-meter boards and earned a career-best, fourth-place showing at one meter this year. Haver’s four All-America awards are the most by a W&J diver in school history and the highest number by a Presidents’ swimming & diving student-athlete since Kaitlyn Orstein ’08 claimed 14 All-America awards and eight national titles from 2005-2008. She was the first PAC diver to earn a spot in the national championship field.
Hockman, a biology and business administration double major with a 3.17 GPA, qualified for the NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships this winter, becoming the first President since 2002 to earn that distinction. He finished three spots shy of attaining All-America status after placing 11th in the long jump with a top leap of 6.78 meters. After winning the long and triple jump events at the Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championships, Hockman was honored as the PAC Field MVP for a second-straight season. In the fall, Hockman took over as the starting quarterback for the W&J football team late in the season and helped the Presidents notch league wins over Thiel and Waynesburg. He passed for 370 yards and four touchdowns, while also rushing for one score.
Colyer missed half of her senior season due to a preseason injury, but saved the best moments of her goaltending career for the second half as she led the Presidents to their first-ever Empire 8 field hockey championship and bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament. A two-time Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-District at-large choice, Colyer graduated with a degree in accounting and a 3.99 GPA. She had a 6-3 record and a 1.86 goals-against average this fall and finished her career with 25 career victories and 219 saves (2nd in school history).
All four award winners will receive their plaques before W&J’s hall of fame inductions at the annual banquet on Sept. 7 at the Rossin Campus Center ballroom.