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RaKavius Chambers, Leah Seibert Named Top 2017 Bryant-Jordan Winners

        BIRMINGHAM – Opelika High School’s RaKavius Chambers and Elkmont High School’s Leah Seibert were named the overall winners at the 32st annual Bryant-Jordan Student Athlete Awards Banquet Monday night at the Birmingham Sheraton Hotel as 104 high school regional senior honorees were recognized and awarded more than $300,000 in scholarships.
        Chambers, a senior football standout, was the recipient of the Larry D. Striplin, Jr., Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award. Seibert, who participated in softball and was a cheerleader, at Southeastern, received the Ken and Betty Joy Blankenship Student Achievement Athlete of the Year Award.
        The program, named in honor of the late coaches Paul "Bear" Bryant of Alabama and Ralph "Shug" Jordan of Auburn, recognized 52 regional scholar-athlete winners selected for their excellence in athletics and academics and 52 achievement winners chosen for their ability to overcome major obstacles during their high school athletic careers.
     “I am truly humbled,” Chambers said.  The 6-foot-4, 300-pound lineman helped his Opelika football team reach the Super 7 Class 6A state finals last season as a standout lineman. The Duke University football signee has a 4.33 grade-point average, a 32 on his ACT test and ranks second in his graduating class of 248.
     “I want to thank the Bryant-Jordan Foundation, my family, my coaches and my teachers for what they have all done for me at this important junction of my life,” Chambers said. “I am also thankful to have the opportunity to attend a school and play for a football staff that allowed me to pursue my interest in band, choir and acting.
     “My work ethic comes from my grandfather. Although he only has a seventh-grade education, he is the hardest-working many that I have ever known.”
      Already named the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) “Heart of the Arts” Award Section 3 recipient for the Southeastern states for his balance between his love for sports and the arts, Chambers was also the recipient of the Watkins Award, which is awarded annually to the top Afro-American high school student-athlete in the U.S. as selected by the national committee.
    A leader in all aspects of his life, he plans to study medicine at Duke University with his goal of becoming a cardiac surgeon. He helped Opelika High School capture first place in the state high school theatrical competition at Florence – playing the role of “God” in the play “Children of Eden.”.
     He is also a member of the OHS Show Choir and Symphonic Band.
      His athletic exploits earned him Team Captain, All-State and All-America honors as a senior.
     Seibert has been a cheerleader and softball player at Elkmont High School in Limestone County. She has a 4.14 GPA on a 4.0 scale.  Leah was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare form of childhood cancer, which has required her to face many obstacles during her high school years.  Even when she couldn’t participate, she was there cheering her teammates on and giving them her full support.  Her positive attitude has brought her community together in support for her as she has battled through her illness.
     “I thank my teachers and coaches at Elkmont for helping make me the best person that I can be,” Seibert said. Described as a natural leader, Seibert added, “It is an honor for me to receive this award. I thank the Elkmont community for always being there for me.”
    Chambers and Seibert were each awarded scholarships totaling $8,500. Each regional winner received $2,500 and each class winner an additional $3,000. The state winners also received an additional $3,000. More than $10 million has been distributed to student-athletes through the Bryant-Jordan Program since its inception in 1986.
        2017 Class winners in the Student Athlete division were: Alex Wilcox, Brantley (1A); Hallee Lightsey, Fayetteville (2A); Leah Seibert, Elkmont (3A); Carson Hall, Randolph (4A); Joseph Holbrook, Boaz (5A); Weldrin Ford, Opelika (6A); and Josh Stevens, Vestavia Hills, (7A).
        Class winners in the Scholar Athlete division included: C.J. Lecroy, Isabella (1A); Shelby Wales, Fayetteville (2A); Taylor Hayes, Piedmont (3A); Samuel Plash, UMS-Wright (4A); Samantha Slaughter, Shelby County (5A); RaKavius Chambers, Opelika (6A); and Taelor Allen Huffman (7A).

        Several special scholarships were also presented to some of the regional winners, including:

        Herman L. “Bubba” Scott Coaching Scholarship: Jordan Pendley, Brookwood; Alabama “A” Club Educational & Charitable Foundation Scholarships: A.J. Robbins, Marion County and Monica McNeil, Central-Phenix City; Auburn Football Lettermen Club Scholarships: Andrew Moore, Covenant Christian School and Samantha Slaughter, Shelby County; Dr. Gaylon McCollough Medical Scholarship: Braden Garrison, Sparkman;  United Methodist Children’s Home Scholarship: D.J. Pope, Gaston High  School and Hallee Lightsey, Fayetteville High School.   
   The complete list of regional winners honored Monday night were:

2017 BRYANT-JORDAN REGION WINNERS

Bryant-Jordan Student-Athlete Achievement Award
Class 1A
Region 1:
Phillip “P.J.” Collins, Kinston HS
Region 2:
Alexis “Alex” Wilcox, Brantley HS
Region 3:
Chance Boggs, Wadley HS
Region 4: 
Marcus McMeans, Winterboro HS
Region 5:
Joe Rogers, Spring Garden HS
Region 6:
Anthony “A.J.” Robbins, Marion County HS
Region 7:
Cherilyn Todd, Phillips HS
Region 8:
Andrew Lawrence Moore, Covenant Christian HS

Class 2A
Region 1:
Curtis Michael Anderson, Washington County HS
Region 2:
Mary Lacy Lusk, Elba HS
Region 3:
Terrence L. Hollins, Jr., Abbeville HS
Region 4:
Brandon Lee Heard, Horseshoe Bend HS
Region 5:
Hallee Lightsey, Fayetteville HS
Region 6:
Davarius “D.J.” Pope, Gaston HS
Region 7:
Hayden Tate Ozbirn, Red Vay HS
Region 8:
Kyle Kirkland Parker, Hatton HS

Class 3A
Region 1:
Steven Boatwright, Excel HS
Region 2:
Blaise A. Van Hoose, Slocomb HS
Region 3:
Shania Sharneise Tuck, Central Coosa HS
Region 4:
Mikayla McElroy, Fultondale HS
Region 5:
Connor Blake Usery, Weaver HS
Region 6:
Garrett Scott Martin, Oakman HS
Region 7:
Austin Cyle Smith, Pisgah HS
Region 8:
Leah Joy Seibert, Elkmont HS

Class 4A
Region 1:
Clara Locke, Monroe County HS
Region 2:
Dylan Deloney, Dale County HS
Region 3:
Easterling Carpenter, Elmore County HS
Region 4:
Andrew Kilgore, Saks HS
Region 5:
Haleigh Jayne-Taylor Warren, Ashville HS
Region 6:
Will Evans, Haleyville HS
Region 7:
Carson Hall, Randolph HS
Region 8: Demareous Smith, Rogers HS

Class 5A
Region 1:
Tucker Batley, Jackson HS
Region 2:
Dalton Green, Brewbaker Tech HS
Region 3:
Lindsey McIlwain, Dallas County HS
Region 4: Ronnie “R.J. Cox, Jr., Demopolis HS
Region 5:
Macie Abigail Freeman, Central-Clay County HS
Region 6:
Lucas Jeffrey McCaleb, Corner HS
Region 7:
Joseph Hobrook, Boaz HS
Region 8:
Erin Wales, Ardmore HS

Class 6A
Region 1:
Andrew Mitchell, Gulf Shores HS
Region 2:
Alexis Nicole Danzey, Northview HS
Region 3:
Weldrin Ford, Opelika HS
Region 4:
Jordan Pendley, Brookwood HS
Region 5:
Melissa Pontius, McAdory HS
Region 6:
Steven David-Henry Soles, Jr., Center Point HS
Region 7:
Noah Fondren, Cullman HS
Region 8:
Myron Dwight McDaniel, Jr., Florence HS

Class 7A
Region 1:
Claire Kengeye, Davidson HS
Region 2:
Monica McNeil, Central-Phenix City HS
Region 3:
Josh Stevens, Vestavia Hills HS
Region 4:
Charissa Roth, Bob Jones HS

Bryant-Jordan Scholar-Athlete Award
Class 1A
Region 1:
Michael Hunter Ward, Pleasant Home HS
Region 2:
Tomysha Danielle Boykin, Linden HS
Region 3:
Clifford “C.J.” Lecroy, Isabella HS
Region 4:
Benjamin Weir, Victory Christian HS
Region 5:
Shea James Buckner, Donoho HS
Region 6:
Garrett Alan Cooper, Marion County HS
Region 7:
Katie Nicole Holcomb, Hackleburg HS
Region 8:
Anna Melinda Persell, Athens Bible HS

Class 2A
Region 1:
Kristen Noel Gulsby, J.U. Blacksher HS
Region 2:
Molly McDaniel, New Brockton HS
Region 3:
Nikki T. Hughes, Goshen HS
Region 4:
Kaitlin Baker, Reeltown HS
Region 5:
Shelby Wales, Fayetteville HS
Region 6:
Race Clausen, Sand Rock HS
Region 7: Morgan Faith Pearce, Red Bay HS
Region 8:
Colby Cochran, Fyffe HS

Class 3A
Region 1:
Allison Nelson, T.R. Miller HS
Region 2:
Ben Beachamp, Houston Academy
Region 3:
Peri LeeAnn Greene, Prattville Christian HS
Region 4:
Kelvin Valladares, Fultondale HS
Region 5:
Taylor Hayes, Piedmont HS
Region 6:
Lauren Anne McHan, J.B. Pennington HS
Region 7:
Tanner Chase Atchley, North Sand Mountain HS
Region 8:
Wesley James Smith, Lauderdale County HS

Class 4A
Region 1:
Samuel Plash, UMS-Wright HS
Region 2:
Mary Conley Teel, Trinity Presbyterian HS
Region 3:
Hannah Traylor Elmore County HS
Region 4:
Destinee Faithe Sellers, Handley HS
Region 5:
Dawson Anderson, Leeds HS
Region 6:
Thomas Jacob Graves, Oakman HS
Region 7:
Christopher Johnson, Westminster Christian HS
Region 8:
Maria Mask, Wilson HS

Class 5A
Region 1:
Williams David Raybon, Jackson HS
Region 2:
Taylor Frances Adams, Carroll HS
Region 3:
Taylor Moore, Dallas County HS
Region 4:
Samantha Kay Slaughter, Shelby County HS
Region 5:
Lauren Brown, Cleburne County HS
Region 6:
Brooke Henson, Mortimer Jordan HS
Region 7:
Peyton Nance, Etowah HS
Region 8:
Nathaniel Ford, Lawrence County HS

Class 6A
Region 1:
Madelyn Wells, Robertsdale HS
Region 2:
Serin Baek, Dothan HS
Region 3:
Rakavius Chambers, Opelika HS
Region 4:
Marjorie Ann Blanton, Helena HS
Region 5:
Antonio Stanton, Jr., Bessemer City HS
Region 6:
Holley Beth Spivey, Walker HS
Region 7:
Ann Carol Braswell, Cullman HS
Region 8:
George Brown, Decatur HS

Class 7A
Region 1:
Emma Bearden, Murphy HS
Region 2:
Kayleigh Green, Smiths Station HS
Region 3:
Taelor Allen, Huffman HS
Region 4:
Braden Garrison, Sparkman HS