ELMIRA, NY (WENY) - Thursday was a special day for 2 Southern Tier athletes as the Elmira Kiwanis Club awarded their Outstanding Athletes of the Fall season to Horseheads' Gavin Elston and Elmira Notre Dame's Alyssa Walker at the Elmira Riverfront Holiday Inn.

These awards are given to a student athlete who is nominated by their coach, and excels in their performance on the field, as well as their contribution off the field in the community, in the classroom, and shows strong character.

Notre Dame's Alyssa Walker is the recipient of the Outstanding Female Athlete award. Walker was the lead runner for the Crusaders, as she was the 4th-ranked runner in Class D in the state, and she has tallied multiple wins during her high school career. In addition to her accomplishments during Cross Country, Walker has contributed a number of years at her church, volunteering at Sunday School and outreach ministry. She also tutors, and has organized a Christmas Shoe Drive as well as helping at the local Habitat for Humanity. 

This Fall's male recipient is Gavin Elston. Gavin lit up the stat sheet at Running Back for the Horseheads Blue Raiders this season. Elston rushed for 1,490 yards with 21 touchdowns in 9 games this season. Off of the field, Gavin has volunteered at the Horseheads Food Bank, the Horseheads Animal Shelter, Horseheads Youth Lacrosse, and Varsity H Youth Camp. 

WENY spoke with the recipients and they were both thrilled to be recognized for much more than just their performance in their respective sport.

"It's really nice. I love helping people, I love spending time being out in the community" said Walker. "A lot of people when they hear my name they just think of running or being really smart. It's nice to just have people know that I'm more than just an athlete and a student and that I do other things with my time."

"I think it's something that a lot more awards should look at too, being more of a person than an athlete" said Elston. "So I think that's just amazing when you look at another side of a person than just the athlete part."

Hear from the recipients on their special day and check out the recap from the Kiwanis ceremony in the video.