Published: Nov 18, 2012 10:35 AM
Modified: Nov 18, 2012 10:36 AM
HILLSBOROUGH - Orange High School senior Jack Twomey-Kozak has been named a national finalist for the 2012 Wendy’s High School Heisman Award. He learned of the honor at a surprise assembly with his schoolmates last week.
The High School Heisman was created in 1994 to honor exceptional students who bring excellence in academics, athletics and community service.
Twomey-Kozak is best known in Hillsborough as the top returning wrestler from Orange’s 2012 undefeated dual-team champions. He finished third in the state individual championships last year at 132 pounds and is expected to wrestle at 138 this season.
Of the 48,000 students who applied for this year’s award, Kaitlyn Kent, a senior swimmer from South Iredell High School in Statesville, and Twomey-Kozak earlier were named as the state winners from North Carolina, culled from a list of 20 N.C. finalists.
As state winners, Twomey-Kozak and Kent will travel to New York City for a Dec. 7 national award presentation, where each will receive a gold medal and a $2,000 award in their names to their respective high schools. Two national winners — one male, one female — will be announced during the collegiate Heisman ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 8, televised on ESPN2.
Both winners will receive a crystal Wendy’s High School Heisman trophy, a $500 gift certificate to Wendy’s, and a $10,000 donation to their respective high schools.
“Colleges want well-rounded students and with admissions growing more selective, a national award like the Wendy’s High School Heisman can really help students stand out,” said Archie Griffin, two-time collegiate Heisman Trophy winner.
“Kaitlyn and John are inspirations to others in their school and community, and we’re honored to welcome them into the Heisman family.”
Carrboro High School runner Francesca Perone was a 2011 N.C. finalist for the High School Heisman.
The 2012 North Carolina finalists were 10 females — Kent (South Iredell), Gisele Bailey (Charlotte Christian School), Jordan Brown (Randleman), Chandler Borton (Winston-Salem R.J. Reynolds), Cassidy Brown (Providence Grove), Keri Fulp (East Surry), Brenna Grass (Swansboro), Rachael Johnson (Asheville Erwin) Rachel Moore (Andrews), Kalen Perry (Newport Croatan), and 10 males — Twomey-Kozak (Orange), Chase Arrington (Lee County Senior), John Cook (North Raleigh Christian Academy), Blake Covington (Reidsville), Logan Jackson (Waxhaw Marvin Ridge), Matthew Madigan (Winston-Salem Mount Tabor), Joseph Nelli (Gastonia Ashbrook), Jason Ozment (Trinity Wheatmore), Keegan Pardon (Hickory Christian), and Grant Rivers (Hendersonville). W.E. Warnock
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