Andrews Scholarship awardedPublished 4:36pm Saturday, August 10, 2013
You couldn’t ask for a better way to start a tournament. On Saturday, the 12th annual Bobby Andrews Scholarship softball tournament got underway, but before the games could begin six young athletes gathered at the center of the Susiegray McConnell Complex to receive the Bobby Andrews Scholarship.
The scholarship awards $500 to those that will attend Beaufort Community College and $300 to those that go elsewhere and this year’s class was comprised of Washington High School’s April Bullock, Brandi Hardison, Faith Benson and Justyce McKissick, along with Northside High School’s Britney Alligood and Union Christian Academy’s Morgan Rae Williams.
The ceremony began with brief speech by guest speaker Morgan Bryant, a former Bobby Andrews Scholarship recipient who starred at Washington before moving on to play softball at Peace College, and then ended with a touching speech from Andrews, who talked about the importance of role models for young athletes.
Andrews said that this year’s class was as good as any he’s seen over the past 12 years.
“This year’s group is an outstanding one just like the rest of them. They’re all good sports,” Andrews said. “I’m just blessed that I can be here. I’m a 77-year old man and I’m blessed every time I come out here.”
A role model himself, Andrews has dedicated so much of his time to youth sports over the years and his efforts were extremely appreciated by this year’s scholarship winners.
“Mr. Bobby is just a great man. He’s always encouraging,” said Alligood, who will be attending East Carolina University this fall and will major in nursing. “Anytime you come out to the ball field you always see him and it’s always good to know he’s supporting you. It means a lot to me that I get to be a part of this because he’s impacted my life so much. It’s a great honor to receive this scholarship.”
Williams said she has had a longstanding relationship with Andrews and greatly appreciated all he’s done over the years.
“I’ve known Mr. Bobby for a long time and I really appreciate his love and support,” said Williams, who will be attending BCCC.
Bullock, who graduated Washington High in 1998, said that playing in the Washington Girls Softball League provided many great memories.
“I played from the time I was eight all the way until I graduated and it was just a great experience. I have so many great memories and now that I’m a little older I look back and say, ‘That was so awesome,’” said Bullock, who is going to BCCC for nursing. “It’s just amazing (to receive the scholarship). My dad played ball with (Andrews). He’s just a really good man who’s always been there for the community.”
McKissick, who has played in the league for 10 years, will be playing softball at PCCC and majoring in sports therapy, said she was extremely grateful to win the scholarship.
“Bobby’s a great man. I appreciate the scholarship and him always being out here for the kids,” McKissick said. “It’s really appreciated, college is expensive and this helps out.”
Benson, who will be attending Fayetteville State and plans to major in nursing and tryout for the softball team, felt the same way.
“I have a good relationship with (Andrews), he’s a good man,” Benson said. “It’s always great to see him out here smiling and watching all the games. It means a lot to get the scholarship, I’m very appreciative.”