The Journal earned the three highest section awards possible for all papers with circulations of under 40,000, earning first place for best sports section, best Sunday sports section and best special section — Kickoff 2012, the annual high school football preview issue.
“We are extremely proud of the hard work that sports editor John Bednarowski and his staff do to put a quality sports section out for our readers each day,” Marietta Daily Journal managing editor Billy Mitchell said.
Bednarowski claimed four writing awards, including first place for best high school news story on deadline with his story about former Harrison High School football coach Marty Galbraith resigning amid allegations of inappropriate conduct. Bednarowski also earned second place as best columnist, and two third-place awards — one for best high school event story on deadline for his account of the Pope-Sprayberry football game, and the other for best college news story on deadline for his story on former Lassiter quarterback and current Georgia backup Hutson Mason not deciding to transfer and instead remain in Athens for his redshirt sophomore year.
Former Journal sports writer Greg Oshust, now the sports editor of the Northside Neighbor, a sister paper of the Journal based in Sandy Springs, earned two awards.
Oshust won second place for best pro sports news story on deadline, for his story on Cobb County residents’ pride in Aries Merritt’s Olympic gold medal victory in London, and third place for best outdoor writing for his story on Smyrna resident Thomas Carroll returning to competitive running after a 20-year absence.
Adam Carrington and former Journal sports writer William Bretherton each won one award.
Carrington won third place for amateur sports for his story on Marietta resident Eric Highsmith turning to tennis after losing a leg in a car accident. Bretherton earned third place for best pro sports news story on deadline for his story on Women’s Professional Soccer shutting down for good.
Judges for this year’s GSWA contest were Pat Forde of Yahoo Sports, Knoxville News Sentinel sports editor John Adams, Tampa Tribune college sports writer Joey Johnston and Malcom Moran, director of the National Sports Journalism Center in Indianapolis.
The current Marietta Daily Journal sports staff consists of Bednarowski, assistant sports editor Eli Boorstein, Carrington and Carlton White.