Hardesty, a sophomore, was nominated by North County High School unified bowling team coach Lisa Magness. On the unified bowling team, Hardesty serves as a "partner" to Sean Nagy, a student who uses a wheelchair, does not talk and has a trach.
In nominating Hardesty for the award, Magness wrote, "Robert is a wonderful choice for this award as throughout the entire season, Robert has shown school spirit, sportsmanship and put himself second for our unified bowling athletes."
Magness also highlighted Hardesty's empathy and positive interactions with his team partner.
"He talks to him to get him to smile and will always say hi and bye to him at our practice and matches," Magness wrote.
For Hardesty, an added bonus of the unified bowling team is the chance to participate in a sport with his twin sister, who has a disability.
"His interactions with her are also very positive," Magness wrote. "He loves being able to play a sport with her and her friends."
During the award presentation, Magness further reinforced Hardesty's selflessness and giving nature.
"I think a lot of times when kids play a sport, it's all about them, and Bobby did not do that this year. It was all about making an experience for anybody on the team. ... He was just a really good leader on our bowling team this year."
Beyond helping the community, Hardesty said it was important to him to "make sure everybody feels like they have a place."
In addition to unified bowling, Hardesty also plays baseball, where he splits time between pitching and third base.
And while he's just a sophomore, Hardesty plans to pursue a career that focuses on helping others.
"I definitely want to be in some field where I'm helping somebody out," Hardesty said.