ATLANTA — In challenging times, sports have always brought the city together and unity is needed now more than ever. The Atlanta Sports Council and 11Alive can’t think of a better way to re-energize the sports community and recognize the hard work of the athletes, teams and icons who continue to shape Atlanta’s sports history.
Following a 7-day voting period that ended on July 17, an underdog was named the 2020 Atlanta Sports Awards - Outstanding Sports Team.
The announcement was first made on-air during 11Alive News and a full presentation of the awards will be held Aug. 15 during a one-hour special.
The Georgia Tech Swimming and Diving team received more fan votes than Atlanta United, Marietta High School Football, Atlanta Braves and the University of Georgia Football team.
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“I’m really proud of our team so this is an awesome award that we will cherish for years to come,” said Georgia Tech Swimming and Diving Head Coach Courtney Shealy Hart.
This year’s Outstanding Team Award goes to Georgia Tech Swimming and Diving. A team that shattered records in the pool and finished as a top 25 program in the country.
“We had a great ACC Championship. We broke some school records; we had an ACC champion. That was a lot of fun. Unfortunately, our season was cut a little short and we didn’t get to go to NCAA’s for our final meet, but I’m just really proud of their resilience and hard work,” said Hart.
Lead by head coach Courtney Shealy Hart, she’s a two-time Olympic gold medalist so she uses that to have success with her student athletes on a different level.
“Our coaches and our support staff all work together to make this happen so it’s certainly not just me, but we all work together. For me I was able to achieve a lot of things as an athlete and so it’s awesome to come here as a coach and help them achieve their goals in and out of the pool.”
One of the biggest reasons for success moving forward has been the recruiting they’ve been able to do as a program. Because of that, you can expect more big things from that program in the future.
“This class has really built our program and taken it to the next level and then I’m super excited about our next two recruiting classes. We’ve done a really good job with that. The pandemic which slowed things down in the water for us helped our recruiting. I certainly think we will be a top 10 program here in the next 3-5 years,” said Hart.
- Week of July 27: Lifetime Achievement Award announcement
- August 3: Outstanding Coach presented by The Home Depot
- August 4: Outstanding College Athlete
- August 5: Outstanding Esports Competitor
- August 6: Unsung Hero Award presented by the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation
- August 7: Positive Athlete presented by Southern Company
- August 10: Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Coca-Cola
- August 11: Top Sports Moment presented by Mercedes-Benz
- August 12: Outstanding Professional Athlete presented by Truist
- August 13: Outstanding Sports Team
- August 14: Team 11 High School Athlete (High School category determined by 11 Alive)
- August 15: One-hour special airs on 11 Alive at 7 p.m.
- August 16: One-hour special re-airs on 11 Alive at 11 a.m. and at 8 p.m. on WATL