The 26th annual Golden Nole Awards continued on Thursday, as the Florida State Student-Athlete Advisory Council revealed the Unconquered Spirit Award winner in addition to the Golden Nole recipients from each team.
The Unconquered Spirit Award was given to 13-year old Sam Donaway of Crawfordville, Fla.
Donaway, who was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy in 2007 was matched with the FSU swimming and diving through Team IMPACT, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for children facing serious and chronic illnesses through the power of team. He officially joined the Seminoles on Oct. 12, 2019 following the contest against Duke, when he signed his letter of intent.
Donaway is on the pool deck at every home meet to cheer on the Noles, he attends team functions and also spends time with several student-athletes outside of the pool.
Patrick Butkovich, Maddie McDonald, Paxton Rhoads, Nina Kucheran and Ayla Bonniwell made a special call on Zoom to Donaway to present him with the honor.
“Sam is such a major part of our team,” FSU swimming and diving coach Neal Studd said. “He embodies that Unconquered spirit each and every day. He brings us joy and we love that he’s on our team.”
In addition to the Unconquered Spirit, the individual Golden Nole winners from each team were presented student-athletes who have portrayed the ideals of intercollegiate athletics. Head coaches selected these Seminoles by evaluating athletic and academic success as well as their contribution to service to the university and community.
2019-20 Golden Nole Award Winners
Women’s Basketball – Nicki Ekhomu, SR – Bolingbrook, Ill.
Men’s Basketball – Trent Forrest, GR – Chipley, Fla.
Men’s Golf – John Pak, JR – Scotch Plains, N.J.
Women’s Golf – Amanda Doherty, SR – Brookhaven, Ga.
Men’s Swimming – Vladimir Stefanik, SR – Varin, Slovakia
Women’s Swimming – Dorothy Halmy, SR – Shenandoah, Texas
Men’s Diving – Cam Thatcher, SR – Toledo, Ohio
Women’s Diving – Ayla Bonniwell, SR – Ithaca, N.Y.
Men’s Tennis – Rana Roop, SR – Oslo, Norway
Women’s Tennis – Nandini Das, SR – Mumbai, India
Soccer – Gabby Carle, JR – Levis, Quebec
Softball – Dani Morgan, SR – Newnan, Ga.
Baseball – Chase Haney, rSR – Winter Garden, Fla.
Volleyball – Madison Sullivan, SR – Jacksonville, Fla.
Beach Volleyball – Madison Fitzpatrick, JR – Tallahassee, Fla.
Football – DeCalon Brooks – rSO – Tampa, Fla.
Men’s Cross Country – Kasey Knevelbaard, GR – Caruthers, Calif.
Women’s Cross Country – Megan Mooney, SR – Thornton, Colo.
Men’s Track – Trey Cunningham, JR – Winfield, Ala.
Women’s Track – Ka’Tia Seymour, JR – Palatka, Fla.
Men’s Field – Jacore Irving, JR – Chattahoochee, Fla.
Women’s Field – Shanice Love, SR – Kingston, Jamaica