The team of Jeff Duncan, Jim Kleinpeter, Evan Woodbery, Ron Higgins, John Reid, Katherine Terrell and Todd Masson of (New Orleans) won first place in the Associated Press Sports Editors 2015 contest in projects for the 75-175,000 circulation category.

The team won for their series of stories centered on the 10-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. The group from will be presented a first-place plaque at the 2016 APSE banquet. The banquet and awards dinner concludes the APSE Conference June 22-25 at The Omni in Charlotte, N.C. collected two first-place votes and finished with 54 points. Finishing second was Dirk Chatelain of the Omaha (Neb.) World-Herald, who received one first-place vote and finished with 48 points. Mike Kilen and Andrew Logue of the The Des Moines (Iowa) Register came in third with 42 points.

Sports editors in the 75-175,000 category submitted 16 entries. The contest is open to APSE members. Click here to join.

Contest chair Tommy Deas 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 late February and early March, preliminary judges at the APSE Winter Conference at Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., selected a top 10, with each judge ranking the entries in order from 1 to 10 separately on a secret ballot. Entries were given 10 points for a first-­place vote, 9 points for second and 8 points for third place, and so on. The final 10 were given to a second judging group, which ranked the entries 1-10 in the same fashion. The winner and final rankings are determined by tallying the ballots.

Each paper was permitted to enter one project entry. The projects were a collection of articles, and some with multi-media elements, that shed new light on personalities and issues in the news, including trends and original ideas. Though some collections may have been more than 10 entries, organizations were limited to 10 stories per entry.

The top 10 are listed below with links to writers’ Twitter pages, APSE member websites and winning entries:


  1. Jeff Duncan, Jim Kleinpeter, Evan Woodbery, Ron Higgins, John Reid, Katherine Terrell and Todd Masson, (New Orleans), two first-place votes, 54 points

New Orleans sports in midst of boom 10 years after Hurricane Katrina: Jeff Duncan

LSU coach Les Miles’s experience with Hurricane Katrina forged a bond with Louisiana

If Katrina killed his kid brothers, how could Auburn football matter? Rumors, truth and Abramson’s Alonzo Horton’s search for peace

Leonard Fournette’s bridge over troubled water made him a man: Ron Higgins

The 2008 NBA All-Star Game played a huge role in the city’s Katrina recovery efforts

While Katrina changed his plans, former Saints QB Danny Wuerffel maintains his ministry’s presence in New Orleans

‘You don’t look back; you just do what you have to do’: Buras guide Capt. Ryan Lambert reflects on Katrina

Remembering 10 years ago and the final game played at the old Superdome: Jeff Duncan

How Paul Tagliabue and the NFL helped save the Saints and the Superdome


  1. Dirk Chatelain, Omaha (Neb.) World-Herald, one first-place vote, 48 points

Mike Riley’s Oregon Trail

Ducks’ rise cast shadow on Riley’s Oregon State program

Tom Brady was always the big one who got away from Mike Riley

Wisconsin’s Paul Chryst says Mike Riley showed him nice guys can finish first


  1. Mike Kilen and Andrew Logue, The Des Moines (Iowa) Register, 42 points

The Last Flight: Grieving, moving forward


       T4. Darnell Mayberry and Anthony Slater, The Oklahoman (Oklahoma City), 39 points

New OKC Thunder coach Billy Donovan honed his game and made his name in the toughest of basketball environments

A boy and a dream: How Billy Donovan’s childhood goal turned him into a legendary ballplayer

Looking back on Billy Donovan’s brief NBA career

How a short stint on Wall Street led Billy Donovan to coaching

How Billy Donovan built a basketball powerhouse at Florida

What life was like for Billy Donovan after his national titles at Florida


       T4. Dave Ammenheuser, Skip Nipper, The Tennessean (Nashville), three first-place votes, 39 points

Coming home to Sulphur Dell


  1. Tom Yantz, Lori Riley, Matthew Conyers, Steve Goode, Paul Doyle, Mike Anthony, Tim Fontenault and Scott Powers, Hartford (Conn.) Courant, 29 points

Kevin Frederick: So Much More Than A Football Coach To Sabby

Ray Aramini: Eastern Rugby Team Follows His Inspiration To Help
Cookie And Bob Bromage: Connecticut’s First Couple

Jennifer Schulten: Getting Kids To Run For Fun

Jose Colon: A Lifetime Of Improving Lives Through Boxing

Kelvan Kearse: Making A Commitment To Windsor Athletes

Shyheim Russell: A Young Guy Who Reaches Out To Younger Kids

Katie Martensen: Somehow, She Always Finds Time To Help Others


  1. John Whisler, Tom Orsborn, Dan McCarney, Mike Finger, Tim Griffin and  Jeff McDonald, San Antonio Express-News, 28 points

Texas Open has had big impact on golf history

McCombs ranks Spurs as his crowning achievement

Tennis star put Trinity on ‘world map’

Landing Duncan put Spurs ‘in a class of our own’

Gustafson built baseball dynasty at South San

Wings gave S.A. early taste of pro football

Holt’s low-key style has earned him respect

Bout set the bar for big events in S.A.

Saints endured season like no other in San Antonio in 2005

Popovich’s legendary career got off to a rocky start


  1. Paul Woody, Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch, 22 points

Women in NASCAR: Intimidation? Not in Earnhardt Miller’s DNA

Women in NASCAR: Busch makes husband, team, family a better place to be

Women in NASCAR: Mueller rarely notices her unique status in NASCAR


  1. Gary Schwab, The Charlotte Observer, 19 points

Concussions forced young soccer player to leave game she loved

Lindsay’s journey: Should she play again after two concussions?

‘Sarah’s story all too common,’ says ex-UNC and USA star Cindy Parlow Cone

Sarah’s story brings home what’s at stake with concussions


  1. David Briggs and Nicholas Piotrowicz, The Blade (Toledo, Ohio), 8 points

A Toledo-born rivalry: Harbaugh, Meyer share roots in northwest Ohio

Rockets, Falcons find ways to cover cost of legislation