Eight Saint Michael's students earn major awards at 65th Annual Block 'M' Dinner (DOWNLOADS AVAILABLE)
COLCHESTER, Vt. - Eight Saint Michael's College students and women's cross country head coach Molly Peters were recognized with major awards on Wednesday evening at the Athletic Department's 65th Annual Block 'M' Awards Dinner in the Ross Sports Center. Each of the 21 programs also honored their Coaches Award winners.
Three students earned the George "Doc" Jacobs Award: men's tennis senior Brian Healey (Ware, Mass./Belchertown), and seniors Harrison Antognioni (Bennington, Vt./Mount Anthony Union) and Denise Belanger (Rumford, Maine/Mountain Valley). The Diane C. Foster '77 Award was earned by men's cross country and Nordic skiing senior Robert Sitzer (Lenox, Mass./Lenox Memorial) and field hockey senior Jackie Stacey (West Windsor, Vt./Woodstock Union). Women's swimming & diving and women's tennis senior Eileen Mullowney (Burlington, Vt./Burlington) earned the College's NCAA Woman of the Year accolade, while men's lacrosse senior Kevin Hunt (Johnstown, N.Y./Johnstown) and women's soccer senior Laura Ostrout (Northfield, Vt./Northfield) were Victor V. LeMieux '35 Award honorees. Peters was named the Purple Knight Coach of the Year.
The George "Doc" Jacobs Award was first handed out in 1969, as it recognizes individuals who make a truly outstanding contribution to the athletics program, regardless of athletic ability. The accolade is named in honor of the legendary coach and athletic director, and the founder of the Block 'M' Awards Dinner.
A men's tennis captain, Healey is also a member of the Athletics Advisory Council and Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC), and co-produced the College's acclaimed "It Gets Better" video, in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) youths. He is the Athletics liaison to the Student Association and has been very involved in community service efforts through the College's Mobilization of Volunteer Efforts (MOVE), including serving as the coordinator for the Little Brother/Little Sister program.
A four-year student assistant in the Athletic Communications office, Antognioni covered hundreds of contests, wrote hundreds of press releases, and updated untold numbers of statistical files. He continued to learn, create and innovate throughout his time as an undergraduate, despite a schedule that had him editing the College's student newspaper, The Defender, and writing sports for two major Vermont daily newspapers, the Burlington Free Press and Bennington Banner. Antognioni will return to serve as the Athletic Communications intern next year.
Belanger has served numerous roles in the department: as a lifeguard, student employee supervisor, student assistant in the athletic training room, and as a director of ice hockey operations at Purple Knight home games. She has also participated in VITA, Liturgical Choir, the Schools Like Us Retreat, LEAP, Eucharistic ministry, and the Family and Friends of Faith Program. Belanger is a representative for the Student Association and serves on the Executive Board as the National Communications Coordinator for the Residence Halls Association (RHA).
The Diane Foster '77 Award is presented to student-athletes who exemplify, by their actions, true compassion, sacrifice and service. It began in 2000 to honor the memory of Foster, a former student-athlete.
Sitzer is a two-sport athlete, having served as a Nordic skiing captain each of the past three years. He played an important role for MOVE throughout his undergraduate years, working as a student leader and heading the Special Events program for the organization. His work focused on staging large events, such as on-campus blood drives, apple picking events, servathons, and the Committee on Temporary Shelter (COTS)/CROP Walk.
Stacey, a field hockey goalkeeper, is a Dean's List student and two-time National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) All-Academic honoree. She volunteered at the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center in Burlington, teaching weekly science lessons to local school children. Through MOVE, Stacey volunteered with Best Buddies and also went on an extended service trip to Buffalo to volunteer in two charter schools for at-risk youths. A two-time recipient of her team's Purple & Gold Award for Leadership and Service to others, Stacey was involved in the Penguin Plunge for Special Olympics and the COTS Trick or Treat and Easter Basket programs.
Founded in 1999, the NCAA Woman of the Year is an accolade that accounts for athletic excellence, outstanding academic performance, community service and demonstrated leadership. Each NCAA member institution is eligible to put forth a nominee for national and conference consideration.
Mullowney is one of the most outstanding female student-athletes in the College's history. A two-time Northeast-10 Conference Academic All-Conference selection, she has her name on 10 swimming school records and helped her tennis team reach the NE-10 Tournament semifinals all four years, and the NCAA Tournament twice. A swimming team captain, Mullowney missed her entire sophomore season due to injury but still finished with eight all-conference finishes in her career. She was honored as the Women's Swimmer of the Meet at this year's New England Intercollegiate Swimming & Diving Association (NEISDA) Championship and was CollegeSwimming.com's National Swimmer of the Week in February. Mullowney met NCAA Championship qualifying standard times in three freestyle events this year and still found time to volunteer as an instructor for Alumni Swim Lessons, and served as an Orientation Leader and Campus Tour Guide at the College.
The Victor V. LeMieux '35 Award, which was established in 1964, is presented annually to the varsity athlete best displaying loyalty and leadership in their program, both on and off the field of competition.
Hunt, who is described by men's lacrosse head coach Brian Kingsbury as "just an outstanding young man, the most mature young adult I have ever come across," is a second-year captain and earned All-New England and NE-10 Academic All-Conference accolades as a junior. An Honors student, Hunt is a member of SAAC, an Orientation Leader, a POW Retreat Leader, a student leader for the New Student-Athlete Orientation, and is also involved in Edmundite Campus Ministry.
Ostrout was a four-year starter who earned All-New England recognition in her senior season. Women's soccer head coach Marcel Choquette describes her as a person who is "truly committed to making a difference, on and off the field." An Honors student as a biology major, her list of involvement includes SAAC representative, Saint Michael's Athletic Hall of Fame Committee Student-Athlete Representative, Purple Knight Leadership Academy, COTS shelter volunteer, Gifford Medical Center volunteer, volunteer coach at the Eric Douglas Dettenrieder (EDD) Memorial Fund Disability Clinic, Make-A-Wish volunteer, and youth soccer coach. As Choquette said, she exemplifies everything you want in a true student-athlete at Saint Michael's College.
Peters completed her sixth year as the women's cross country head coach. At the beginning of the academic year, her team was selected to finish 13th in the NE-10 this season; instead, when the conference championship came around, she led her team to a third-place finish, the program's best in 18 years. In addition to helping the program and the school raise its profile with that successful showing, her student-athletes have continued to lead in the classroom, with 21 of her 26 runners earning NE-10 Commissioner's Honor Roll accolades in the fall, requiring a minimum 3.0 grade-point average. Six were honored by the College on National Student-Athlete Day due to having a minimum 3.7 cumulative GPA.
Coaches Award Winners
Baseball - senior Jesse Sullivan (Saugus, Mass./Pingree School)
Men's Basketball - senior Tom Ward (Brighton, East Sussex, England/Saint Francis [N.Y.])
Women's Basketball - senior Caitlin Quinn (Oakdale, Conn./Montville)
Men's Cross Country - sophomore Dana Glubiak (Chagrin Falls, Ohio/Gilmour Academy)
Women's Cross Country - senior Caitlin Ferland (Vergennes, Vt./Vergennes Union/Bay Path)
Field Hockey - senior Jenny Boudrow (Dedham, Mass./Dedham)
Men's Golf - senior John Goodwin (Wolfeboro, N.H./Kent School)
Men's Ice Hockey - junior Rich Rodeschini (Katonah, N.Y./Canterbury School)
Women's Ice Hockey - senior Casey Yelton (Arnold, Md./Washington Pride)
Men's Lacrosse - senior Peter Hanson (Andover, Mass./Andover)
Women's Lacrosse - senior Eliza Scoba (Franklin, Mass./Franklin)
Alpine Skiing - first-year Fredrik Sandell (Oslo, Norway/Donski Alpine)
Nordic Skiing - senior Robert Sitzer (Lenox, Mass./Lenox Memorial)
Men's Soccer - sophomore Chris George (Stratham, N.H./Exeter)
Women's Soccer - senior manager Kirsten Halsey (Shelburne, Vt./Hanover)
Softball - senior Olivia Leclerc (Colchester, Vt./Colchester)
Men's Swimming & Diving - senior Chris Jones (Santa Fe, N.M./Saint Michael's)
Women's Swimming & Diving - senior Eileen Mullowney (Burlington, Vt./Burlington)
Men's Tennis - senior Sam Cieplicki (South Burlington, Vt./New Hampton School)
Women's Tennis - senior Emily Ogilvy (Bedford, N.H./Trinity)
Women's Volleyball - sophomore Lindsay Phenix (Tewksbury, Mass./Central Catholic)