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Daily Post sports honored as state's best

The Gwinnett Daily Post was presented with 17 awards in the Division II category, including three 2008 best sports section awards, at the Georgia Sports Writers Association's annual convention Sunday.

In addition to a first-place honor for best sports section, the newspaper also won for best Sunday sports section and for best sports section layout. The performance marked the second straight year that the paper swept first in those top-three

categories.

The Daily Post also was honored for third place in the best special section category for its annual high school football preview. The contest was judged by four veteran journalists and organized by Claude Felton of the University of Georgia.

Sports editor Will Hammock and staff writers Brandon Brigman and Ben Beitzel each received first-place awards for individual stories.

Hammock's wins came for best college sports news story on deadline, for his coverage of Georgia Tech pitcher Michael Hutts' death, and for best high school sports news story on deadline, for his story on late Central Gwinnett coach Dennis Roland's memorial service. Hammock also got third place in the best columnist category and second- and third-place in amateur, non-scholastic sports for a story on Olympian Eric Shanteau's cancer fight and another series on Gwinnett's Olympic hopefuls.

Brigman took first place in best high school feature or series, non-deadline, for his story on Norcross football player Wesley Hollingshed.

Beitzel placed first in amateur, non-scholastic sports for his story on 12-year-old stroke survivor Dontae Douglas. He also was third in best pro event story on deadline for his coverage of the Georgia Force.

Staff writer Christine Troyke won three awards, including second and third place in best pro sports news story on deadline for Gwinnett Gladiators coverage. She also was third in best high school event story on deadline for her region track story on Dacula's Eve Machovec.

Staff writer David Friedlander had a pair of second-place finishes. He was runner-up in best pro sports event story on deadline for AT&T Classic golf coverage and for best high school event story on deadline for a story on Meadowcreek football snapping its long losing streak.