By Carmen Tam
The 44th annual Athletics Awards Banquet sponsored by the Dalhousie Black and Gold Club honoured the varsity sports community last Wednesday in the Macinnes Room. C100 radio sports director John· Moore was the master of ceremonies for the 12th consecutive year in what is considered to be one of the finest banquets in the country.
Dal president Dr Tom. Traves welcomed the 300 athletes, sponsors and support staff while the President of the Student Athletic Council, hockey Tiger Mark Alexander, said grace.
The first award of the night was presented by Dr. Alexander (Sandy) Young, a professor of sport history at Dal and founder of the Dalhousie Award for Great Contribution to Nova Scotia Sports. For the first time since its inception in 1976, the award went to one of the Black and Gold's own, long-time head coach of the varsity swimming program Nigel Kemp, who retired this season after 27 years.
34 athletes were gifted with the Dalhousie Varsity Award, a personalized plaque given to student athletes who have competed for the Tigers for three years. The volunteer recognition awards went to Garnett Cross, Colin Guthrie and Chuck Wheeler for their contribution to the varsity programs at Dal. Swimming team manager Betty Hawary collected the Stephen Yarr Memorial Trophy while Cathy-Lynn Lee, from men's basketball, was named Trainer of the Year.
The most valuable player for each team, as voted by their teammates, were recognized at the banquet with a plaque presentation from their coaches. This season's MVPs were Jamie Blanchard and Kristen Lewis from cross country; Stuart Kemp and Sara , Woodworth from swimming ; Baker and Terri Scott Simpson from track and field; Marc Rainford and Amy Harding from soccer; Terry Martin, Jason Trepanier and Jen Parkes from volleyball; Sara Henneberry and Brian Parker from basketball; and Jan Melichercik from hockey.
Soccer players Mary-Beth Bowie and Thomas Ernst took home Rookie of the Year Awards while women's volleyball coach Lori Welsh-Hawley was named the 1997-98 Coach of the Year.
Forty-seven Dalhousie athletes were recognized by the Atlantic Universities Athletic Union as All-Stars. Six of those athletes were honoured as the best in the ·conference: Angela Crealock (women's basketball), Mike Manuel (men's track and field), Kristen Lewis (women's cross country), Scott Simpson (men's cross country), Tomas Ernst (men's soccer), and Mary-Beth Bowie (women's soccer). Bowie was also named CIAU Rookie of the Year.
The Tigers sported four AUAA Playoff MVPs in Brian Parker (basketball), John Hobin (volleyball), Cara MacKenzie (volleyball) and Paul English (soccer). English was also named CIAU Tournament MVP at the National Championships hosted by Dalhousie earlier this year. Soccer's Marc Rainford, Stuart Cochran, Paul English and Mary-Beth Bowie and volleyball's Terry Martin captured CIAU Tournament AllStar recognitions.
Four Tigers were named CIAU ALI-Canadians this season: Mary-Beth Bowie (first team), Terry Martin (first team), Brian Parker (second team) and Paul English (second team). A CIAU Honourable Mention went to men's volleyball's Jason Trepanier. The Tigers also accumulated 30 Academic All-Canadians this year.
AUAA Coach of the Year Awards went to track and field's AI Yarr and Nigel Kemp. Kemp also received the CIAU Swim Coaches Association's Distinguished Coaching Award last month in Sherbrooke at the National Championships.
The Class of '55 Trophy for Outstanding Female Athlete was awarded to Sarah Woodworth, fifth-year captain of the swimming team. Woodworth has won 11 AUAA individual titles, is an eight-time CIAU finalist and a CIAU bronze medalist as a Tiger.
The Climo Trophy for Outstanding Male Athlete was shared by volleyball's Terry Martin and basketball star Brian Parker. Martin, last year's co-recipient of the award, is a two-time All-Canadian, CIAU Rookie of the Year, four-time AUAA All-Star and is a member of the National Team. Parker has played for Dal for three years and is a three-time All-Conference player, three-time All-Canadian and this season's AUAA Playoff MVP.
Woodworth also captured the President's Award for the athlete that best combines athletics and academics. Woodworth completed a mathematics degree in 1995 and is currently a third-year pharmacy student who has maintained a GPA of over 3.4.
"It was a good way to end the year," said Karen Moore, acting Director of Athletics at Dalhousie. "We are certainly pleased with how the event went. It's also nice to see such a positive and enthusiastic group.”
"It takes many individuals to host an event such as this and I would like to thank everyone for their contribution."
Congratulations to all athletes for their accomplishments this season and to all award recipients.
First published in the Dalhousie Gazette vol 130, iss 26 on April 9, 1998