By John Bednarowski

APSE First Vice President

Owen Hassell of the Wilmington StarNews won first place in the Associated Press Sports Editors 2017 contest in the Multimedia category for the Under 30,000 circulation division.

Hassell won for his entry Sports in North Carolina, East of I-95. The winner in each category will receive a plaque at the 2018 APSE Summer Conference in Nashville. The banquet and awards dinner will conclude the APSE Summer Conference, which takes place June 17-20 at at the Marriott Hotel Nashville / Vanderbilt University.

Hassell beat out runners-up Tommy Deas and Molly Catherine Walsh of The Tuscaloosa News. Bret McCormick, Garrison Gist and Joe Koon of The Herald (Rock Hill, SC), placed third.

Sports editors in the Under 30,000 category submitted 14 Multimedia entries. The contest is open to APSE members. Click here to join.

Contest chair John Bednarowski and fellow APSE officers Jeff Rosen, Todd Adams and Robert Gagliardi numbered each entry, assuring they had been stripped of headlines, graphics, bylines and any other element that would identify the writer or news organization.

In February, preliminary judges at the APSE Winter Conference in St. Petersburg, Fla., and off-site around the country, selected a top five, with each judge ranking the entries in order from 1 to 5 separately on a secret ballot. Entries were given 5 points for a first-­place vote, 4 points for second and so on, to one point for a fifth­-place vote. The final five were given to a second judging group, which ranked the entries 1-5 in the same fashion. The winner and final rankings are determined by tallying the ballots.

The multimedia category includes interactive graphics, audio, slideshows or combinations thereof, or anything else that falls under the broad description of multimedia other than simple videos. Entries will be judged, foremost, on the strength of storytelling. Visual and auditory quality were also considered.

The top 5 is listed below, with links to writers’ Twitter pages, APSE member websites and winning entries.

  1. Owen Hassell, Wilmington StarNews 28 points (Four first-place votes)

Sports In North Carolina, East of I-95

  1. Tommy Deas and Molly Catherine Walsh, The Tuscaloosa News 21.5 points

Your Guide to Tuscaloosa Regional Softball

  1. Bret McCormick, Garrison Gist and Joe Koon, The Herald (Rock Hill, SC) 21 points (Two first-place votes)

Who are the top-10 high school football recruits in The Herald’s coverage area?

  1. Staff, Sun Journal (Lewiston, Maine) 12 points

“2017 Fall Preview slides”

  1. Robert Gagliardi, Laramie Boomerang 11 points

2018 Wyoming football early signees & recruiting tracker

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