NASHVILLE --- Tennessee State women’s track and field star Amber Hughes (Atlanta, Ga.) took home the Ohio Valley Conference Female Athlete of the Year award at the conference’s Honors Brunch at DoubleTree Nashville Downtown on Friday morning. The award was voted on by the OVC’s athletic directors and sports information directors.
It marks the second year in a row that a Tigerbelle has won the accolade and just the second time the award has gone to a TSU female student-athlete since its inception in 1981. Hughes joins former teammate Clairwin Dameus, who won the honor in 2016, as the only OVC Female Athlete of the Year award winners from TSU.
Throughout her senior year, Hughes has dominated OVC competition. During the indoor season, she repeated as OVC Track Athlete of the Year and OVC Field Athlete of the Year – the only student-athlete in conference history to accomplish the feat. Hughes won four gold medals at the OVC Indoor Championship as well as an individual silver and one with the 4x400m relay team en route to Female Athlete of the Championship honors.
Continuing her indoor season, Hughes secured USTFCCCA Second Team All-America honors for the triple jump after placing 11th at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships in College Station, Texas.
Hughes continued her stellar year during the outdoor season, winning OVC Field Athlete of the Year. At the OVC Outdoor Championship, Hughes accounted for three individual gold medals, plus one in the 4x400m relay, as well as one individual bronze. She was again awarded Female Athlete of the Championship.
For her career, Hughes has won 26 OVC individual gold medals.
She will head to Eugene, Ore. next week for the NCAA Outdoor Championships to compete in the triple jump on Saturday, June 10.
Other nominees for this year’s award included Austin Peay senior basketball center Tearra Banks, Belmont sophomore basketball guard Darby Maggard, Eastern Illinois senior tennis athlete Kelly Iden, Eastern Kentucky junior distance runner Charlotte Imer, Jacksonville State junior pitcher Whitney Gillespie, Morehead State senior golfer Anna Magnusson, Murray State junior golfer Moa Folke, SIUE senior pitcher Haley Chambers-Book, Tennessee Tech sophomore soccer player Kari Naerdemann and UT Martin distance runner Ann Asipan.
TSU has now had four OVC Athlete of the Year honorees: Carlos Rogers (1994 – Men’s Basketball), Charles Anthony (2005 – Football), Clairwin Dameus (2016- Women’s Track and Field) and Amber Hughes (2017 – Women’s Track and Field).