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Brown, Stahl 'honored' as Bress Award recipients at Baldwin

submitted photo | for the south hills record
Baldwin athletic director Vince Sortino poses with, from left, Alexa Stahl and Dorian Brown, who were selected as the top female and male senior athletes, respectively, at Baldwin in 2012-13.

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By Brian Graham
Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Dorian Brown and Alexa Stahl were presented with Baldwin High School's prestigious Bress Award this year — an award given to the school's top male and female senior athletes.

Brown was a three-year starter at running back for the Fighting Highlanders, and will be heading to Ohio University in the fall.

Stahl, an all section selection in soccer and the school's all-time leading goal-scorer in girls' lacrosse, will head to West Liberty State to continue her soccer career.

Brown and Stahl each made significant contributions to their respective teams, and were honored by the school's booster program at a banquet last month.

Both said the honored bestowed upon them was something that was an entire high school career's worth of hard work.

“I didn't really know there was an award at Baldwin like that to be given out,” Brown said, “but it felt really good to be honored. I have to give a lot of thanks to my friends, family and coaches for pushing me.

Said Stahl: “It was a great accomplishment to have everyone behind me and have my back over the years. To win the athlete of the year award (at Baldwin) is a great feeling.”

During his senior season, Brown rushed for 1,059 yards and 12 touchdowns on 143 carries, and was selected to play for the Pennsylvania squad in the Big 33 Classic all-star game.

The Pennsylvania all-stars rolled past their Maryland counterparts, 58-27, last Saturday at Hersheypark Stadium.

Brown said his participation in the exhibition game opened his eyes to different schemes, and showed a lighter side to football thanks to the game's buddy program.

“I picked up that you can't just run it by yourself; you have to think about the others too,” he said. “We had special needs kids, and we worked with them for a whole week. I learned that it's not just all about myself and there are others who look up to you.”

While Stahl set the school record with 157 career goals in lacrosse, she said soccer was always her sport of choice.

Lacrosse, she said, was a way to compete and keep up her conditioning in the spring.

“Soccer has always been my favorite sport. Lacrosse is just something I picked up my freshman year,” Stahl said.

“I didn't really understand (lacrosse) my first year. I liked it because it was a high-scoring game, and fast-paced.”

Both Brown and Stahl plan to not only contribute to their college programs on the field but in the classroom, as well.

Brown will look to graduate from Ohio with a degree in computer science.

“(Computer Science) is like football, but in a different way,” Brown said. “The program is not easy. Sometimes you want to give up, but I don't. I just keep thinking I want to learn more and work harder and harder — just like in football.”

Stahl, meanwhile, will pursue an exercise physiology path at West Liberty State.

“I've always really been into sports,” she said, “and think having a career where I can still work with athletes is something I'd like.”

Brian Graham is a freelance writer.

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