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Bright House Sports Network honored the best and brightest student-athletes in the Tampa Bay Area at its "Evening of Champions" awards gala. Hundreds of people attended the event at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts.
Awards were presented to both male and female athletes in more than 40 categories ranging from basketball and cheerleading to wrestling and bowling.
"One of the things we try to do at Bay News 9 and at Bright House Sports Network is give back to the community in addition to covering the community, and one of the ways we do it with Bright House Sports Network is spotlighting high school athletics," said Alan Mason, vice president/general manager of News and Local Programming. "These are kids who work hard, they're in the band, they're on the team, they excel in the classroom."
Among the top honors of the night were the awards for Overall Athletes of the Year, Coach of the Year, and the annual recipients of the David Logan Scholarship, awarded once each year to four high school seniors (one male and one female in both Tampa Bay and Central Florida) who excel in athletics and academics..
Kyle Norstrem, a senior at Brandon High School, won Overall Male Athlete of the Year. Norstrem is a four-time state champion wrestler with a career record of 287-3.
He said he's proud of what he's accomplished.
"I've been at it since I was 4 years old," Norstrem said. "I gave up many birthday parties, holidays, not eating on certain holidays because I have to maintain my weight. There's a bunch of sacrifices that people have to make to become the best, and I love it."
Bailey Hertenstein was named the Overall Female Athlete of the Year. She is a sophomore at Riverview High School. Hertenstein runs cross-country. This year, she is the reigning Class 4A regional and state champion.
Hertenstein said it hasn't always been easy.
"I've had a couple of falls in a couple of my races, I've had races where I've dropped out, I've had practices where I was just in tears and not exactly having the best day of my life," Hertenstein said. "I think without my teammates and coaches, I probably wouldn't be here."

One person was killed and two other injured after two boats collided Friday near the Coast Guard Station in St. Petersburg, according to authorities. Coast Guardsmen heard the collision just before 10 p.m. and a crew was launched immediately to provide assistance to the injured boaters. At least five people were involved in the collision. When St. Petersburg Fire Rescue arrived at the scene, one of the boaters was declared dead. A second boater was taken to Bayfront Medical Center in critical condition, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. A third boater from the second vessel was brought to the station. He was treated by members of the Coast Guard and then taken to Bayfront Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries. The other boaters were not injured. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating the collision.
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