- Cato Memorial Scholarships to be presented to 13 Seniors
The Indiana High School Athletic Association, Inc. is pleased to announce this year’s group of 13 senior studentathletes who will be honored with the 2020 C. Eugene Cato Memorial Scholarships.
To reward the efforts of Indiana’s complete student-athletes, Methodist Sports Medicine, Indiana Farm Bureau
Insurance, Indianapolis Colts, Indiana Fever, Indiana Pacers, Sport Graphics, Inc., Franciscan Health Systems,
and WTHR-13 have all partnered with the IHSAA and the IHSAA Foundation to sponsor the program. These
well-rounded, positive role models have demonstrated excellence in academics, school and community
involvement, character, sportsmanship and citizenship.
Each individual will receive a $2,500 scholarship for their prep accomplishments and be recognized at this year’s
Thomas A. Brady Sports Achievement Awards Dinner established by Methodist Sports Medicine. The upcoming
dinner was recently postponed due to current events and will be rescheduled for a later date to be announced.
This year’s recipients are:
2020 IHSAA / C. Eugene Cato Memorial Scholarship Award Recipients
Shamiya Beasley Merrillville
Alaina Clady Plymouth
Mykayla Couchenour South Knox
Rylee Johnson Shenandoah
Logan Owens Henryville
Mike Perkins Prairie Heights
Kinsey Price Rising Sun
Turner Royal Bloomfield
Cooper Rusch New Castle
Kenzee Smith Decatur Central
Savannah Strieter Evansville North
Abigail Teipen South Putnam
Hannah Tippets Brownsburg
- Each student completed and submitted a formal application and had to meet certain criteria to qualify including:
1) be enrolled and participating in interscholastic athletics at an IHSAA member school during this school year;
2) be a senior at an IHSAA member school who will graduate this school year; 3) win a varsity letter as an
athlete in at least one of the 22 IHSAA-sanctioned athletic programs; 4) be nominated by the school’s principal;
5) carry a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale or the equivalent; 6) have no
violations of the school’s athletic code of conduct; 7) The student must not have been ejected from any IHSAA contest due to unsportsmanlike behavior; 8) The student must verify that he/she has made a commitment to remain substance-free throughout high school.
Nearly 100 completed applications were received from across the state and a blue ribbon panel of six
individuals decided upon the final recipients. They are: Bill Benner, Senior Vice President, Pacers Sports &
Entertainment; Rob Craig, Director of Outreach Services and Marketing, Methodist Sports Medicine; Joe
Fonderoli, Director of Special Events, Indianapolis Colts; Lee Ann Logan, System Marketing Director, Franciscan Health; Bobby Cox, Commissioner, Chris Kaufman, Assistant Commissioner, Indiana High School Athletic and; Matt Wolfert, President, IHSAA Foundation.
The scholarship program is named in tribute to the late Commissioner C. Eugene Cato who led the IHSAA from
1983 to 1995 and served as assistant commissioner from 1976 to 1983. “Gene’s” passion for athletics and his belief in the intrinsic value of athletic competition on the formation of a child’s character enabled Gene to positively impact generations of young men and women with his well-known “Firm, Fair, and Friendly” approach to caring for others. He passed away in 2008.
Since 2003-04, the IHSAA has recognized 204 outstanding student-athletes with scholarships totaling
In addition to a Lifetime Achievement Award and a Tactical Athlete Comeback Award, the Methodist Sports Medicine Research and Education Foundation also will honor Indiana high school and college student-athletes that have overcome injury or hardship with Brady Comeback Awards.
The keynote speaker for the 2020 Brady Sports Achievement Awards is David Blough, quarterback for the
Detroit Lions and former Purdue University signal-caller who was a recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor.
For additional information on the awards dinner, visit the Methodist Sports Medicine website.
Merrillville’s Shamiya Beasley ranks first in her class of 525 students with a 4.0 GPA (not weighted), earning her the title of Valedictorian, all while attaining 7 varsity letters throughout her high school career. She is a 4-year letter winner in cross country, where she was named the team captain this past fall, and a 3-year letter winner in track and field, participating in the state meet her Junior year and receiving the team’s Sportsmanship Award following her sophomore and junior seasons. Off the track, Beasley is a member of the National Honor Society, National Society of High School Scholars, Merrillville’s Spanish Club, and the Merrillville Pirates Athletic Counsel. Shamiya has also volunteered with her church, lending a hand with numerous food pantries and clothing drives. She is invested in her community’s youth as well, helping train elementary students in track and field. Beasley plans to attend the University of Kentucky after graduation.
Alaina Clady of Plymouth has earned 10 varsity letters while showcasing a 4.07 GPA and a class ranking of 9out of 234. She is a 4-year letter winner in volleyball and basketball, and a 2-year letter winner in tennis. Alaina was also the team captain for both her Basketball and Volleyball teams. Outside of Athletics, Clady holds numerous leadership positions including being named a class officer and the treasurer of the Interact Club and Business Professionals of America. She is an active member in and out of her community, taking a mission’s trip to the Dominican Republic and volunteering with the Special Olympics, Autism Awareness Carnival, and Dance Marathon. Alaina is undecided on where she will attend college but is choosing between Indiana University, Purdue University, and Indiana State University.
Senior Mykayla Couchenour of South Knox sits atop her class of 98 while participating in 4 varsity sports, earning a varsity letter in all of them each year. She participates in cross country, basketball, tennis, and track and field, and will total 16 varsity letters following the spring athletic season. When she’s not playing a sport, Mykayla participates in South Knox’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes as the group’s president, leading worship every meeting. She has also held offices with the Future Farmers of American and Student Council. Couchenour also competes academically, being a member of her school’s English Academic Bowl team and Spell Bowl team. Mykayla is highly involved in her community, participating and leading many volunteer activities to help others around her. She plans on attending the University of Notre Dame in the fall.
- Shenandoah’s Rylee Johnson leads her class of 91 with a 4.0 GPA and a wide range of sports competed in. During her high school tenure, Rylee has participated in basketball, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. She has earned 7 total varsity letters in basketball, track and field, tennis, and volleyball. One of her greatest highlights so far was being the leader in starting a soccer team at her school. Johnson is a member of the National Honor Society and volunteers throughout her community. One of those volunteer experiences helped raise money for Pennies for Patients by putting on a dodgeball tournament. Adding to this, Rylee is active within her church, watching children and cleaning bathrooms. She has also been on five missions’ trips with her youth group. Johnson will attend Purdue University next year.
Logan Owens of Henryville has 14 varsity letters while maintaining a 4.0 GPA and a top rank in his class. He was awarded 4 varsity letters in cross country, soccer, and track and field while adding 2 more in basketball.
Logan is a member of his school’s Student Council, National Honor Society, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Campus Life, and Superintendent’s Council. He has been a volunteer through many basketball camps, teaching the younger generation vital basketball skills, as well as tutoring fellow students in different subjects. His favorite volunteer event is G.R.A.C.E. Week, allowing special needs individuals the opportunity to experience summer camp. Owens has been accepted into the IUPUI Honors College, where he will attend school in the fall.
Prairie Heights Mike Perkins is a 3-sport athlete and 3.9 GPA student, ranking 10th in his class. A 4-year varsity letter winner in basketball and track and field, Perkins also competes in tennis, where he has earned 2 varsity letters. He is also a member of the Future Farmers of America where he has been involved in numerous competitions. Mike is also a member of the National Honor Society and holds the role of vice president of his class. Through his youth group, Perkins has volunteered by raking leaves for elderly couples, assisting with canned food drives, and organizing games for young kids to participate in. Mike has also been a 10-year 4-H member, winning grand-champion twice. He plans on attending Purdue University in the fall.
Senior Turner Royal of Bloomfield is a great example of a student-athlete competing in basketball, golf, and tennis during his high school career, while holding a 4.1 GPA and a class rank of 2. He has earned a varsity letter all 4 years in each of his sports, bringing his total to 12. Royal is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Student Council, Future Farmers of America, and 4-H. He has also been a member of numerous clubs in his school, including the Spanish, Culture, Chess, Booster, and Ping Pong clubs. Turner has volunteered with his community through the Christian Service Club, assisting with backpack donations and Christmas shopping for needy families. He also served as a student mentor his junior and senior year helping younger students move into junior high school. Turner will attend Wabash College next year.
Cooper Rusch of New Castle is a 4.3 GPA student-athlete who competes in basketball, football, and unified track and field, earning 10 varsity letters. He is a member of the school’s student government and Renaissance club, serving as the president of the Renaissance club his junior and senior years. He is also a member of the National Honor Society and has competed for the Math, Social Studies, Fine Arts, and Interdisciplinary academic teams. Rusch has volunteered with the Wheeler Men’s Mission, serving meals, and has also packed backpacks for less fortunate children the last two years. He has also helped Christmas shop for children and spent time assisting with football and basketball camps. Cooper will attend the University of Minnesota in the fall.
Decatur Central’s Kenzee Smith is a 4.4 GPA student-athlete, who has competed in basketball, softball, and volleyball, earning 12 varsity letters total. She is a member of the National Honor Society and Decatur Central’s Student Council. Kenzee has also been involved with two mentoring programs, Champions of Character and Quest and Inquiry Senior Mentoring. She has had the opportunity to volunteer throughout her community, assisting families in need during the holiday season, providing meals to those in need and shopping for families during Christmas. Smith has been a team captain in basketball, softball, and volleyball, and has earned All-State and Academic All-State honors. She was also named the 2019-20 Decatur Central Female Athlete of the Year. Following graduation, Kenzee will attend the University of Indianapolis.
Senior Savannah Strieter of Evansville North holds a 3.9 GPA while competing in track and field, volleyball, unified track and field, and unified flag football. She has earned 4 varsity letters in volleyball, 2 varsity letters in track and field, 2 varsity letters in unified track and field, and 1 varsity letter in unified flag football. Outside of athletics, Savannah is a member of the IHSAA Student Advisory Committee, where she assists with IHSAA State Championships and the Student Leadership Conference. Strieter has served as the president of the Evansville North Student Leadership Advisory Council and assisted with raising $3,000 for Champions Together. She is a member of the National Honor Society and has assisted with fundraising events through the Susan G. Komen Foundation for Breast Cancer. Savannah will attend Taylor University next year.
Abigail Teipen of South Putnam garners a 4.5 GPA and 7 varsity letters. She has competed in Swimming, earning 4 varsity letters, Tennis, earning 2 varsity letters, and Volleyball, earning 1 varsity letter. She has also been involved with her school’s Spanish Club, Student Council, National Honor Society, Marigold Ambassadors, and Student Ambassadors. Abigail has helped with South Putnam’s trunk-or-treat event, Winter Wonderland celebrations, Farm-to-fork charity dinner, and putting together Easter baskets for a local nursing home. Teipen serves as the senior class president and National Honor Society vice president. She will attend Indiana University in the fall.
Brownsburg’s Hannah Tippets holds a 4.5 GPA and ranks 9th in her class of 592 students. She has competed in cross country and track and field earning a varsity letter in each of those sports. Hannah is a member of the school’s student government and National Honor Society. She has also tutored other students and participated in DECA, where she finished second in the state, qualifying for Internationals. Tippets volunteers with Days for Girls, who provides girls in third world countries with the opportunity to receive higher levels of education. She has also helped Special Olympics Indiana. Hannah plans to attend Northwestern University post-graduation.
Senior Kinsey Price of Rising Sun participates in basketball, soccer, and track and field, while having a 4.3 GPA. She has a total of 12 varsity letters, earning 4 in each sport that she competes in. Outside of sports, Kinsey is involved with several clubs, including Student Council, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Spanish Club, and Science Club. She has assisted within her church, teach children’s church and Vacation Bible School. She is also a 1st degree black belt in Tae Kwan Do and has used her experiences to assist with the Indiana Academy of Martial Arts as a judge and referee. Price has also been named team captain for the Rising Sun Soccer team and Basketball team. Following her senior year, Kinsey will attend Franklin College.