Dymond, Wysocki names most outstanding athletes in senior class

They bled blue and gold everywhere they competed, respecting all and fearing none.

They were always fierce competitors determined to win, but they never let their desire to come out on top take precedence over academics and sportsmanship.

Jared Dymond won the George Prince award, while Grace Wysocki won the Helen Smith Award. Photo courtesy of Oxford Community Schools.
Jared Dymond won the George Prince award, while Grace Wysocki won the Helen Smith Award. Photo courtesy of Oxford Community Schools.

Some days, they experienced the thrill of victory. Others, they suffered through the agony of defeat.

But no matter the final score, they always behaved with class as ambassadors for their school and community.

To honor their accomplishments and commitment to excellence, the Oxford Wildcats Athletic Boosters Club hosted its annual Senior Athletic Awards ceremony May 15 at the high school’s Performing Arts Center.

A total of 144 senior athletes from all sports were honored, 77 males and 67 females.

Special honors were bestowed upon seniors Jared Dymond and Grace Wysocki.

Dymond was presented the George Prince Award, which recognizes the most outstanding male senior athlete.

“It’s a great honor,” he said. “It’s nice to see how the community respects me.”

During his career at OHS, Dymond, the son of Jayson and Amy, earned a total of four varsity letters, two in football and two in baseball.

His most memorable moment was Sept. 19, 2014 when he and his fellow football players beat archrival Lake Orion 21-14 .

Being a student athlete taught Dymond the value of teamwork, dedication and hard work.

“It builds up your character,” he said.

Playing sports helped Dymond academically in that it forced him to have a “more structured schedule” in order to balance athletics and academics.

“I always had to find time to get my homework done rather than putting it off, which helped me in the classroom quite a bit,” he said.

To the younger Wildcat athletes he is leaving behind, Dymond encourages them to train hard, especially in the off-season when they might not see the value.

“It really does pay off when the season comes around,” he said.

Dymond plans to attend Oakland University in the fall and study political science. His goal is to become a lawyer.

Wysocki earned the Helen Smith Award, which is presented to the most outstanding female senior athlete.

“It was a great honor, that’s for sure,” she said. “I was very surprised when I heard them call my name. It was a big shock. I can’t believe they chose me because there are so many phenomenal athletes. I was very flattered.”

During her OHS career, Wysocki, the daughter of Dan and Mary, earned three varsity letters in volleyball and two in basketball.

Wysocki said participating in sports “definitely taught me discipline and how to balance my life on a daily basis.”

“It helped me strive for my goals (and) know my limits,” she said. “It definitely helped me (understand) who I want to be.”

“I made a lot of friends (from) athletics, so that was plus, too,” Wysocki noted.

To the younger athletes who will soon be filling the holes left by the graduating class, Wysocki urged them to “just keep going” whenever they feel like they’ve “hit a wall.”

“If you lose a game, it’s going to be hard, but don’t think too much (about) it because in the end, it’s just a game,” she said.

To Wysocki, high school sports are about just having fun and enjoying the experience.

“Sports aren’t your entire life – there’s bigger and better things,” she said.

This fall, Wysocki will attend Oakland University for a semester, then transfer to Michigan State University. She plans to double major in criminal justice and psychology, then pursue a master’s degree.

She would like to work in the criminal justice field helping victims and others who have been through traumatic experiences.

Winning the Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year awards were Bradley Vandecar and Katherine Guthrie.

Bradley Vandecar
Bradley Vandecar

“It shows that all of my hard work has paid off and I’m being recognized for my dedication to both academics and athletics,” Vandecar said.

Vandecar, the son of Richard and Jeanne, earned a total of eight varsity letters, four for cross country and four for track and field.

Running as part of these teams taught him the importance of cooperation, leadership skills and “how to be a good listener.” He also learned self-discipline and the value of leading a balanced life.

His advice to younger athletes is “always make sure to put school before sports, but (remember) both of them are important for a healthy lifestyle in high school.”

Vandecar will begin studying biochemistry at Oakland University (OU) this fall.

“I want to go into neuroscience or maybe some other part of the surgical field,” he said. “OU has one of the best biochemistry programs in the country.”

Guthrie was quite pleased to be the other Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year.

“I finally made it,” she said. “It took a lot of effort to get there.”

Guthrie, the daughter of Bob and Jenny, earned two varsity letters in soccer and one in golf.

Katherine Guthrie
Katherine Guthrie

Playing both an individual and a team sport taught Guthrie a variety of lessons.

From soccer, she learned how working together as a team can bring success. Golf showed her how to learn from her mistakes, keep going and make improvements.

Whether on the field or in the classroom, Guthrie isn’t afraid to keep pushing herself further and further.

“I know there’s no limit for me,” she said. “I can keep going.”

To the younger OHS athletes looking to earn spots on varsity teams or simply get more playing time, Guthrie advised them to never give up.

“Keep trying your hardest and eventually, you’ll get there as long as you (give) over 100 percent every day,” she said.

Guthrie plans to attend the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) in the fall. There, she will study mechanical engineering and Spanish.

She hopes to one day work in the aerospace technology field for either the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) or a defense company.


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