Pope punter and strong safety Peyton Cariaco was among seven local athletes who were named regional scholarship winners from Positive Athlete of Georgia.
Cariaco was presented with the Wellstar Wellness Ambassador Award, which represents athletes who symbolize the importance of exercising, healthy lifestyles and being a positive athlete.
Other winners included Sprayberry swimmer Jenna Houlton, who earned the Cobb EMC Positive Energy Award. The award recognizes an athlete who brings positive energy to every practice and competition.
McEachern softball player Kennedy Head was a recipient of the LGE Community Credit Union Extra Credit Award, which is presented to an athlete “who goes above and beyond for their team, school and community to make the world a better place.”
Hillgrove cross country runner Logan Mossor earned Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Hope and Will Award, which is presented to an athlete who represents a hopeful attitude and strong will for his or her team, school and community.
Positive Athlete Georgia recognized athletes who overcome adversity, have given back to their schools or communities or shown positive influences toward their teammates. Each winner received $1,000 of scholarship money from their respective corporation.
Cariaco, who is a rising senior, had 62 tackles, including three for loss, two sacks and a fumble recovery at linebacker last fall. On special teams, he averaged 34.7 yards per punt.
“He’s one of the best all-around kids that I’ve coached,” Pope coach Tab Griffin said. “He does everything the right way and is a team leader. He’s competitive and feisty on the field, but he doesn’t seem to be bothered by anything. You can get on to him and he’ll respond in a positive way. You can pat him on the back, and he’ll respond in positive way. You don’t find many kids like that.”
Hunter and Fisher Paulsen, whose mother, Janet, is a domestic violence survivor, are rising seniors who contributed to Allatoona’s state runner-up baseball team as freshmen and the Buccaneers’ runner-up football team last fall. The November Smiles scholarship they won was created to help standout individuals who have overcome the death of a parent.
Coaches have spoken highly of the Paulsens’ competitiveness and the positive vibes they bring to both the football and baseball field.
Harrison girls soccer standout Brittany Brownlee won the Northside Leadership Award, which is given to someone who has shown exceptional leadership skills.
After three years of playing soccer for Walker, Brownlee transferred to Harrison her senior season, with a chance to reunite with teammates she grew up playing with. She switched from midfield to center forward and led the Lady Hoyas with 12 goals before the coronavirus pandemic forced the cancellation of the season in mid-March.
“I’m excited to see that I won,” Brownlee said. “I was honored to have been nominated. I always try to lead by example and be a good leader on the team. It means a lot to know that I’ve been recognized.”