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So. Harrison standout adds another honor

by Mike Nutter

SPORTS WRITER

BRIDGEPORT -- Add one more piece of hardware to an already impressive senior season for Jerred Novotny.

Wednesday night, the South Harrison standout was honored as the Harrison County Male Athlete of the Year and the BB&T Athlete of the Year Banquet at Via Veneto.

"This is something I never expected to do," Novotny said. "The only thing I tried to do this season was go out and work hard and play as best as I could in everything.

"I thought I had a shot at it. I was a little nervous. There were a lot of great athletes this season, but what ever was going to happen was going to happen. It sort of caught me by surprise, but I was kind of anxious to get it."

Novotny is the second consecutive athlete from South Harrison to earn the honor.

Last year, his former teammate, Ben Hall, was selected as Harrison County's top athlete.

Novotny's season actually began in the fall on the golf links, but his season took off in the winter on the basketball court and didn't stop for the remainder of the school year. He garnered first-team, Class AA all-state honors in both basketball and baseball, putting up gaudy statistics in each.

In basketball, he finished as the state's ninth leading scorer and tops in Harrison County at 22.7 ppg. The Hawks ended the season 14-9 and took the eventual Class AA state champions, Bridgeport, to the final minutes in the regional semifinal.

Even more impressive, though, were his baseball numbers.

The first team all-state first baseman won the Harrison County triple crown title with stats which more closely resembled a Little League slugger's.

He batted an eye-popping .547, drove in 36 runs and belted six home runs. Even more impressive was a .987 slugging percentage.

"Not getting my team to the state tournaments is a little disappointing, but I was proud of myself this year. This is a big honor," Novotny said.

However, baseball prevailed in Novotny's choice of future. Next year he will play for coach Brian Sutphin at Alderson-Broaddus College in Philippi.

"Basketball really hasn't come into the picture, yet, but it could a little later," Novotny said. "I'd love to continue basketball, too. Maybe in a year or two if I've got the opportunity, I will."

Sports writer Mike Nutter can be reached at 626-1444 or by e-mail at sports@exponent-telegram.com.

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