Hamilton Chang, a men's basketball player from California Maritime Academy who helped captain the Keelhaulers into the second round of the NAIA national championships, was selected as the California Pacific Conference Men's Scholar-Athlete of the Year by the conference's executive committee.The award is the highest honor presented to a student-athlete in the Cal Pac.
"Hamilton represents the best of what his institution, the California Pacific Conference, and the NAIA build into student-athletes," said commissioner Don Ott. "Along with helping his team on the court, he is making a difference on his campus and in his community. I give my congratulations to him and to all the outstanding and inspiring young men who were nominated."
CMA head basketball coach Bryan Rooney said, "Hamilton is one of the best leaders I have been around in terms of leading by example. He holds himself to an extremely high standard in the classroom, in the campus community, and on the basketball court. His quest for excellence is contagious and has greatly influenced Cal Maritime"
Chang, a native of Riverside, Calif., earned national recognition onthe Daktronics-NAIA scholar-athlete team for the first time this past season with a 3.63 GPA in mechanical engineering. The captain and two-year starter helped the Keelhaulers to a 46-17 overall record as his presence helped the Keelhaulers develop into one of the best defensive teams in the nation. He was also named Cal Maritime's "Champion of Character" award recipient at the National Tournament and is a perennial fixture on the President's honor list.
In the community, Chang served as a science and math tutor, and also worked as a resident assistant with the housing and residence life department. He participated in the basketball program's literacy program with Grace Patterson Elementary School in Vallejo.
To be nominated for this prestigious honor, a Cal Pac student-athlete must have completed their athletic eligibility while making a significant contribution to their team, accomplish excellence in the classroom, participate in and exhibit the five core values of the NAIA Champions of Character, and be involved in the community and on their campus.
2013 MEN'S SCHOLAR-ATHLETE NOMINEES
Mitch Chilcott, William Jessup (Men's Soccer); Jan-Niklas Erasmy, Menlo (Men's Soccer); Seiichi Izumi, Soka (Men's Soccer)
2012-2013 Hamilton Chang, Cal Maritime Academy
2011-2012 Chadd Baltzley, William Jessup
2010-2011 Aren Rennacker, Pacific Union
2009-2010 Curtis Griffin, William Jessup