The Morning News sports team was among top award winners honored Friday by the South Carolina Press Association.
Scott Chancey and Justin Driggers combined to earn six awards for their work in 2022.
Chancey was honored with four awards and now has seven first-place SCPA awards since he came to the Morning News in August 2015.
He won for spot sports reporting for the third time in Florence. This year’s winning entry, in the daily 7,500-20,000 circulation category, was on the shooting death of South Florence multisport athlete and homecoming king Quay Dickens.
Chancey also earned first for sports-column writing for all the state’s daily papers. Three columns were submitted. One was about Timmonsville autistic basketball player Tykeis Hicks. Another was about Lake City wrestler Andre McFadden-Pressley using his late mother’s memory as motivation for winning state. The third was on Wilson’s state basketball championship team rallying around injured player Bryan Boston.
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In sports video, Chancey placed second among all dailies with reactions to South Florence High School’s Bruin Stadium having to be evacuated.
Chancey and Driggers earned third place for sports special sections/magazines (open division) for their Cook Out Southern 500 preview.
Driggers, who won his third SCPA first-place award in the past two years, was awarded first (daily 7,500-20,000) for sports feature for his story on Francis Marion basketball player Jonah Pierce, who began the year as a walk-on with the Patriots before playing his way into the starting lineup and eventually earning the Conference Carolinas Freshman of the Year award.
Driggers placed second in the same category for his feature on FMU softball coach Stacey Vallee surpassing 500 victories.
Also in sports, David Yeazell, whose award-winning photos are a Morning News fixture, won first place for feature photo (dailies 7,000-20,000 circulation) for his image of Trinity Collegiate golfer Conor Koon retrieving a ball from the putting green cup prior to the first round of the 71st annual Grant Bennett Florence Junior Invitational golf tournament on July 6, 2022, in Florence.
Taylor Ford won a third-place award (dailies 7,000-20,000 circulation) in profile feature writing for her story on the Wilson High School drumline instructor driving students to success.
Chris Day captured third place in education beat reporting (dailies 20,000 and under circulation) with stories ranging from a new policy reducing student fighting to classroom changes being made at West Florence High School.
The awards were presented in Columbia during the annual meeting of the SCPA, the organization of the state’s daily and weekly newspapers.