Crowning outstanding high school careers in competition on and off the field, Coldwater’s Jack Hemmelgarn and Versailles’ Kristin Langston have been selected as the Press Pros MAC Scholar Athletes of The Year.

Maria Stein – It can never be said that Coldwater senior Jack Hemmelgarn doesn’t go the extra mile, or miles.  Selected this week as the Press Pros Midwest Athletic Conference Male Athlete of The Year for 2015-16, he had to fly for eight hours from a class trip to Panama Beach, Florida to receive his award.

Versailles senior, Kristin Langston, didn’t have to travel as far.  Having graduated just two weeks ago, she’s already settled into a summer job at Phelan Insurance, in Versailles.  Hers was a twenty-minute drive.

Hemmelgarn and Langston, selected from a list of 40 candidates, both received $2,000 scholarships Wednesday evening at ceremonies hosted at the Moeller Brew Barn in Maria Stein, in front of family, friends, coaches, and teammates.

The scholarship awards are made possible through the sonsorship of  “MAC” sports on Press Pros, by:  St. Henry Bank (St. Henry), Carriage Werkes (St. Henry), McSobers Bar and Grill (Coldwater), 3G Restaurant (St. Henry), VPP Industries (Versailles), Leugers Insurance (Maria Stein), Moeller Trucking (Maria Stein), Keyhole Pizza (Newport), The Mr. Shoppe (Coldwater), Kaup Pharmacies (Vesailles and Ft. Recovery), Westrich Furniture (Delphos), Kremer Roofing (Versailles), Knapke Kitchens and Cabinets (Versailles), and the Moeller Brew Barn (Maria Stein).

Hemmelgarn was a natural choice, having steered Coldwater last fall, as quarterback, to the Cavaliers’ fourth straight Division V state championship in football.  In addition, he completed his prep football career having won each of his 17 varsity starts at quarterback, going back to substitute duty in his junior year, and post-tournament was named the 2015 Ohio Division V Offensive Player of The Year.  A three-sport participant, he also participated in basketball and baseball, and won a state title on the 2014 baseball team.  He plans on attending Bowling Green in the fall to pursue a degree in middle childhood education.  And his future plans include…you might guess…coaching football!

Kristin Langston won titles in both volleyball (2014) and basketball (2015) at Versailles.

Kristin Langston won titles in both volleyball (2014) and basketball (2015) at Versailles.

Langston, our 2016 Female Athlete of The Year, was a multi-sport athlete at Versailles, having played softball, volleyball and basketball.  She helped the Tigers win a state title in volleyball in 2014,  and was a member of their 2015 Division III state basketball champs for coach Jacki Stonebraker.  Graduating with a 4.0 grade point average, she was awarded in each of her sophomore, junior, and senior season as an all-conference academic standout, Langston plans on attending Ohio Northern University this fall to pursue a degree in business.

“This is a unique relationship,”  said MAC commissioner Don Kemper.  “Press Pros has given the MAC conference recognition all over the state of Ohio with its coverage throughout the year.  And now, through their sponsors, they’re unique for giving back so generously to a pair of outstanding student athletes.”

Initiated in 2014-15, Marion Local’s Dustin Rethman was selected as last year’s award recipient.  But with increased sponsor support, the program was expanded necessarily for 2015-16 to include both male and female athletes and will proceed in that manner.

The Midwest Athletic Conference has distinguished itself since its inception in 1973 by winning 124 different state titles…and since 2000, 22 titles in football, alone.  It was the first conference in the history of the OHSAA tournament to win in three divisions in one year, in 2014, with Coldwater (Div. V), Minster (Div. VI) and Marion Local (Div. VII).

Kristin Langston (l) and Jack Hemmelgarn with Press Pros publisher Sonny Fulks at Wednesday's ceremony.

Kristin Langston (left) and Jack Hemmelgarn with Press Pros publisher Sonny Fulks at Wednesday’s ceremony.