UNCG's Hoadley fails to advance to Sullivan finals

UNC-Greensboro sophomore Robert Hoadley

UNC-Greensboro sophomore Robert Hoadley

The list of 12 semifinalists for the 2011 Sullivan Award have been narrowed to five finalists. The award has been presented annually since 1930 to the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States, and is based on athletic performances, qualities of leadership, character, sportsmanship and the ideals of amateurism. It is open to participants in every AAU-accredited sport.

UNC-Greensboro sophomore golfer Robert Hoadley was among the 12 semifinalists, but did not make it to the final fivesome.

“I really had no big expectations (about being named a finalist),” said Hoadley, an All Southern Conference selection last season. “I don’t have a lot of national recognition, certainly not like the others on the list.”

Hoadley won the Pinehurst Intercollegiate and tied for ninth at the Fireline Towson Invitational in consecutive events in the spring of 2010. A 15th-place finish in the Southern Conference championship helped secure his selection on the all-conference team.

The 5-foot-8 Hoadley, a two-time state junior champion, also recently competed at the Puerto Rico Classic, where he finished 40th in a field of 75 players that featured some of the nation’s top college and amateur golfers, including 2009 U.S. Walker Cup team members Peter Uihlein and Morgan Hoffmann of Oklahoma State and Bud Cauley of Alabama.

This past fall season he had five top-30 finishes in six starts including a second at the VCU Shootout and three other top 16s.

Hoadley took his semifinalist nod in stride and looks at the big picture of the entire experience.

“It’s still an unbelievable honor to be named one of the 12 semifinalists,” he said. “It’s something I will always be able to look back on and carry with me. It’s something I will have (on my resume) forever and be very proud of.”

The five finalists for the 2010 Sullivan Award:

D.J. Williams, football, University of Arkansas, winner of the 2010 Disney Spirit Award and Mackey Award as the nation’s top tight end

Evan Lysacck, Gold medalist, figure skating

Karrissa Wimberley, winner of 15 world championships in twirling

Regina Jacquess, holder of 45 U.S. records in water skiing

Tahnee Robinson, star women’s basketball player at the University of Nevada.

Another note worth mentioning? Hoadley still is in some pretty good company among those who did not make the final cut. Cam Newton, Auburn quarterback and 2010 Heisman Trophy winner, and Maya Moore, who plays guard for the top-ranked UConn women’s basketball team, also were among the 12 semifinalists.

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