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Athletes of Distinction





BJ Graber Award
2011 NJCAA Betty Jo Graber Award - Mitsuki Katahira

By Gage Axford, NJCAA Student Assistant

The NJCAA is proud to announce Mitsuki Katahira of Daytona State College (Fla.), as the 2011 NJCAA Betty Jo Graber Female Student-Athlete of the Year. The Betty Jo Graber Award is awarded annually to the top female student-athlete in the NJCAA that best exhibits hard work, discipline, ethics and excellence in competition. Katahira is the second golfer to receive the Betty Jo Graber Award.

In her second season with Daytona State, the Kanagawa, Japan native did not finish lower than second place in tournament play. Katahira won nine of eleven tournaments in 2011 and was listed as the top female amateur player when the first rankings were released by World Amateur Golf Ranking system (she is currently ranked No. 2 as of July 14, 2011). Katahira also finished second among all collegiate women golfers in the Golfstat Cup Standings for this season. Her average round score was 71.10 and she shot under par in eight tournaments. 

The two-time NJCAA First-Team All-American led the Falcons to two straight NJCAA Women’s Golf Championships, while also claiming twoindividual medalist titles in the process. She is the NJCAA record holder for the lowest individual three round total (211 in 2010) and lowest individual round score (64 in 2010) in NJCAA Women’s Golf Championship play. Even further, Katahira is also part of two NJCAA team records: lowest round score (280 in 2010) and lowest three-round team total (869 in 2010).

“Mitsuki is an outstanding athlete, student and person,” said Daytona State women’s golf head coach Laura Brown. “She has an incredible work ethic and is a great role model for other student-athletes.”

Katahira plans to go through LPGA Qualifying School, which begins with Stage I qualifying in late July. If she advances through all three stages of the qualifying school, Katahira will have her LPGA Tour membership established by the end of December. 

ABOUT the NJCAA BETTY JO GRABER AWARD
Betty Jo Graber spent 35 years advancing opportunities for women in NJCAA athletics. Along with a successful basketball coaching career at Weatherford College, Texas, she was also the Region 5 Women’s Director, the NJCAA Women’s Basketball Committee Chair and a founding member of the NJCAA Women’s Division. Graber was a member of the inaugural class inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in Tennessee. Graber was the perfect model of hard work, discipline, ethics and excellence in community college athletics. This award is given annually to the NJCAA Student-Athlete that best exhibits these traits.

NJCAA BETTY JO GRABER AWARD RECIPIENTS

Year

Name

Sport(s)

College; City, State

1992-1993

Carey Burton

Volleyball

Barton County Community College; Great Bend, Kan.

1993-1994

Nema Corey

Slow Pitch Softball

Meridian Community College; Meridian, Miss.

1994-1995

Kay Mannebach

Cross Country & Track

Colby Community College; Colby, Kan.

1995-1996

Tricia Ferrin

Basketball

Utah Valley State College; Orem, Utah

1996-1997

Nicole Weed,

Softball

Daytona Beach Community College; Daytona Beach, Fla.

1997-1998

Kaunda Kay Williams

Basketball

Gulf Coast Community College; Panama City, Fla.

1998-1999

Yalika "Boo" Barnes

Basketball

Trinity Valley Community College; Athens, Texas

1999-2000

Devra Viekant

Cross Country & Track

Utah Valley State College; Orem, Utah

2000-2001

Stephanie Martin

Volleyball

College of Southern Idaho; Twin Falls, Idaho

2001-2002

Yuliana Perez

Track & Field

Pima Community College; Tucson, Ariz.

2002-2003

Natashia Morehead

Basketball

Gulf Coast Community College; Panama City, Fla.

2003-2004

Heidi Brooks

Basketball & Softball

Corning Community College; Corning, N.Y.

2004-2005

Chelsie Mesa

Softball

Phoenix College; Phoenix, Ariz.

2005-2006

Sally Kipyego

Track & Field

South Plains College; Levelland, Texas

2006-2007

Kristina Jenkins

Bowling

Hudson Valley Community College; Troy, N.Y.

2007-2008

Lindsey Palmer

Softball

Salt Lake Community College; Salt Lake City, Utah

2008-2009

Nicole Race

Golf

Redlands Community College; El Reno, Okla.

2009-2010

Kelly Closse

Track & Field

South Plains College , Texas

2010-2012 Mitsuki Katahira  Golf Daytona State College (Fla.)

 



 

 

 

























































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