North Oaks Sports Medicine Announces Student-Athletes of the 2017 Fall Season

North Oaks Sports Medicine certified athletic trainers have joined North Oaks Physician Group orthopaedic surgeons to select Sawyer Blankenship, Hailey Gianatano, Taylor Leblanc, and Peyton Ryan as the 2017 “Student-Athletes of the Fall Season” in Tangipahoa and Livingston parishes.    

Female and male students were chosen from both parishes, representing the months of August-October for 2017.

Hailey Gianatano is a junior with a 3.93 GPA at Ponchatoula High School. She is a letterman in basketball and volleyball.

In her sophomore year, Gianatano was recognized as a District MVP for basketball.

For the past two years, she has distinguished herself as a volleyball middle blocker with selection to the All-District Second Team. In a recent three-game series, she racked up 50 kills, 28 digs, 31 blocks, and 15 assists.

Head Volleyball Coach Lauren Long explained that Gianatano also belongs to the Interact Club, National Honor Society, CARE Club, and International Club.

Pictured from left to right are Long, Gianatano, North Oaks Sports Medicine Athletic Trainer Nick Owens, and Ponchatoula High School Principal Danny Strickland.

Ponchatoula High School senior Peyton Ryan maintains a 3.9 GPA and scored a 32 on the ACT.

Ryan throws the javelin and has committed to Southeastern Louisiana University’s track and field team.

He also plays football for the Green Wave. As a middle linebacker, he had 67 total tackles, one interception, one pass breakup, and nine tackles for losses this season.

Head Football Coach Hank Tierney applauded Ryan’s consistent performance. “Peyton is a leader in the classroom, on the track, and the football field,” Tierney shared. Ryan also volunteers with Special Olympics Louisiana and belongs to the Interact Club at school.

Pictured from left to right are Tierney, Ryan, Owens, and Ponchatoula High School Principal Danny Strickland.

Taylor Leblanc is a senior at Albany High School. As a cheerleader, she has earned recognition as a 2017 All-American through the Universal Cheerleaders Association.

Leblanc currently has a 3.4 GPA and has consistently earned academic excellence honors every semester of high school for having a 3.0 GPA or higher. 

“Taylor’s motto is ‘lead by example,’” affirmed Cheer Coach Melissa Wild. “She has a kind heart and always shows respect to her classmates and our faculty and staff.”

Leblanc is active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Family, Career and Community Leaders of America.

Pictured from left to right are Wild, Leblanc, and Albany High School Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Blane Westmoreland.

Sawyer Blankenship is a senior quarterback and linebacker for Springfield High School. He also runs track. A regional qualifier and District MVP in both sports, he is an honor student with a 4.167 GPA. Blankenship belongs to the Beta Club and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

“Sawyer has been a significant part of our program for four years,” noted Head Football Coach Ryan Serpas.

With more than 100 service hours, Blankenship serves as a youth group leader at Community Church of Springfield and tutors special needs students.

Blankenship was junior class president and is a recipient of the Masonic Lodge Honesty and Integrity Award. He belongs to the school’s Media Team and is certified in digital media, Intro to Business Computer Applications, and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).  

Pictured from left to right are Serpas, Blankenship, and North Oaks Sports Medicine Athletic Trainer Mandy Serpas.

Principals, coaches, and athletic directors from high schools in Tangipahoa and Livingston parishes nominate student-athletes. Candidates must have a 3.0 GPA or higher, excel in athletic competition, participate in school and community organizations, and have earned the respect of coaches, teammates, officials, teachers, and their peers. In May, the North Oaks Sports Medicine team will choose a “Student-Athlete of the Year” from all season honorees. 

Nomination forms are available online at www.northoaks.org/athlete or can be requested by calling North Oaks Sports Medicine at (985) 230-5248.