Thursday, August 14, 2014
Former Palmetto Christian tennis standout Austin Heinz has been awarded the Jim Russell Scholarship by the United States Tennis Association South Carolina.
Heinz, an incoming freshman at Samford, was selected for the $2,000 scholarship by a committee of tennis volunteers that considered academic achievement, character, sportsmanship, extra-curricular activities, community service and notable tennis achievements.
He was also required to submit an essay titled, “The impact of tennis on my life.”
“I learned how to continue fighting, and developed willpower and determination,” Heinz wrote in his essay. “Learning how to focus under extreme pressure was key. My mental toughness improved dramatically because of the competition in tennis.”
Heinz's scholarship is funded by the South Carolina Tennis Patrons Foundation, which also funds the Lucy Garvin Scholarship awarded to T.L. Hanna's Natalie Ivey. J.L. Mann's Parks Schoen was awarded the Randall G. Heffron D.M.D Memorial Scholarship, funded by the Coastal Community Foundation.
“We're extremely pleased to be able to reward these deserving students who also excel in tennis,” said David Honeycutt, chairman of the foundation's scholarship committee. “We know they will continue to make our state and tennis community proud.”
Heinz led Palmetto Christian to five SCISA state championships with appearances in two other state title matches. He has been ranked as high as No. 1 in the state, No. 1 in southern section and No. 27 in the nation in USTA Junior rankings.
Frankie Mansfield, the sports reporter for the Moultrie News can be seen all around the state following teams to meets, games, and matches. For score updates, breaking sports news, and more, follow @fjmansfield on Twitter and like Moultrie News Sports on Facebook.