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Two UT Athletes Earn SSC Athlete of the Year Honors

Published: June 09, 2008
University of Tampa athletes Jeremy Black and Shannon Aitken were named June 9 as the 2008 Sunshine State Conference Male and Female Athletes of the Year respectively.

Black, a standout on the UT men’s basketball team, and Aitken, the goalkeeper for the 2007 national champion women’s soccer team, were each named Athlete of the Year following a poll conducted by the SSC’s sports information directors.

Black enjoyed a stellar year in his final campaign at Tampa, averaging 18.7 points and 11 rebounds per game. He led the conference in rebounding and ranked second in scoring, helping guide the Spartans to a second-place finish in the final men's basketball standings.

A Tampa native, Black is the fourth UT athlete to be named SSC male athlete of the year, joining baseball players Eric Beattie (2002-03), Mike Valdes (1997-98), and Paul Russo (1989-90).

Aiken’s final year saw her as a key player who helped propel the soccer team to its first ever NCAA Div. II National Championship and earning her the Div. II Women’s Soccer National Player of the Year Honor.

She played in goal in all 25 of Tampa's matches, notching a 20-2-3 record with 14 shutouts and a 0.61 goals against average. Aitken set school single-season records in shutouts and wins, while her 0.61 GAA ranks third in program history.

A native of Land O’ Lakes, FL, Aitken becomes the second UT athlete to earn SSC female athlete of the year honors. Volleyball player Danielle Faggion earned the distinction for the year 1999-2000.

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