Six Named to 2013-14 VaSID Academic All-State Team

BUENA VISTA, Va.—Following a tremendous 2013-14 season both in competition and in their schoolwork, six Southern Virginia University scholar-athletes were named to the 2013-14 Virginia Sports Information Directors Academic All-State team.

The 2013-14 class includes Tyler King (baseball), Preston Eaton (men’s basketball), Kaitlyn Eaton (women’s volleyball), Brian Blocher (men’s tennis), Keaton Epps (football) and Lora Palmer (women’s soccer).

“We’re thrilled for these six individuals who represent the university so well in every aspect,” said Southern Virginia Director of Athletics Jason Lamb. “The leadership they show to their teammates both in competition and in the classroom means so much to the success of our athletic department. I’m happy they are being recognized for their efforts.”

A three-year starting pitcher, Tyler King pitched 48 career games and 170 innings on the mound after transferring from Cal State East Bay in 2011. Allowing just 19 hits this season, he achieved a 4.99 ERA with 95 strikeouts and 10 wins over his career, including three shutouts. A five-time Provost’s List honoree and two-time President’s List mention, King was also recently named a USCAA All-Academic recipient.

As a junior last season and his first year on the men’s basketball team after transferring from Central Wyoming College, Preston Eaton had a stellar season in which he earned USCAA Second Team All-America honors. A starting guard, the Mapleton, Utah, native had the fourth-best scoring average in the CAC at 16.3 points per game and ranked 13th in the league in three-point percentage at 36.4 percent with 40 treys. Named the USCAA Player of the Week on Dec. 3, 2013, Eaton tallied 98 free throws for the year for third-most in the conference.

His spouse, Kaitlyn Eaton, was also named to the list after earning women’s volleyball Second Team All-CAC honors this past season as a junior. The Syracuse, Utah, native’s .347 hit percentage on the year ranks eighth best all-time in CAC history for a single season after playing all 87 sets. She led the team in solo blocks with 22 to go with 41 block assists.  Eaton was also second on the team in kills with 209 and second with 224 points for the year.

Men’s tennis junior Brian Blocher earned an 11-5 singles record  this past season to go with a 13-6 doubles record with his younger brother, Adam.  A 2013 Capital One Academic All-District recipient, the Rockwood, Tennessee native is a five-time Provost’s List recipient and one-time President’s List honoree. He is majoring in computer science.

Keaton Epps was  named to the group after achieving 2013 Capital One Academic All-District honors as well as USCAA First Team and USCAA All-Academic recognition.  He led the Knights in sacks with 8.5 in 2013 and is a two-time Provost’s List and one-time President’s List recipient after transferring to Southern Virginia in the spring of 2013. The sophomore played in all 10 games and had 28 solo tackles and 23 tackle assists for the year. The Wake Forest, North Carolina, native also forced two fumbled and had five pass breakups on the year.

Women’s soccer junior Lora Palmer earned 2013 Second Team All-CAC honors as well as being named a USCAA Second Team All-American after tying for the team lead with 12 goals last season. Also a USCAA All-Academic honoree, the Alpine, Utah, native was named the CAC Offensive Player of the Week after scoring five goals in two games. Leading the team with 15 goals in 2012, she was named a USCAA All-American and All-Academic honoree on top of achieving 2012 VaSID Rookie of the Year and All-State Second Team accolades.  She was named to the Provost’s List five times and President’s List three times.