POULTNEY, Vt. – Green Mountain College hosted its annual athletic awards ceremony on Tuesday, May 2nd, bringing the 2016-2017 athletic year to a close.
First-year Athletic Director Kip Shipley addressed the student-athletes and thanked them for their hard work and dedication to the College's sports teams during the year speaking about how this year was just the first step in the long-term process of re-establishing a winning culture at GMC.
President Bob Allen echoed Shipley's remarks about how impressed he was with the commitment of the student-athletes in the face of the challenges faced this year.
The first individual awards was given out by Faculty Athletic Representative Dr. Valorie Titus to the scholar-athletes who had reached sophomore status and earned a minimum of 3.3 GPA while participating in varsity athletics. The 2016-17 scholar-athletes included: Brandon Bellissimo, Kenneth Parker, Ethan Cooper, Carl Diethelm, Joshua Klatt, Lucas Krauss, Sawyer Levy, Griffin Shelor, Joshua Drummond, Devin Balcacer, Jacob Nelson, Rachel Aramburu, Madison Gillen, Sandra Parra, Keeley Titus, Brianna Alimonti, Jacqueline Kelsey, Nang Hseng Leng Wann, Alex Reedy, Kionee Brits, MIkayla Clarke, and Katelyn Mann.
The Individual Sport Eagle Awards given to individuals who best exemplify a team player through their performance, leadership, and involvement were presented by the coaches. Winners of this award were: Jiayong Chen (Women's Cross Country), Devin Balcacer (Men's Cross Country), Ryan Crozier (Men's Soccer), Brianna Alimonti (Women's Soccer), Dakota Dodson (Golf), Taylor Hill (Volleyball), Mercedes Rideout (Women's Basketball), Thomas Brown (Men's Basketball), David Gerken (Men's Lacrosse), Rachel Aramburu (Women's Lacrosse), Truman Cressey (Men's Tennis), Alex Reedy (Women's Tennis), Julia Harcourt (Women's Track and Field) and Evan D'Amore (Men's Track and Field).
In a brief interlude Shipley made a note of thanks to five student-athletes who had competed in four or more sports this year. Those student-athletes were: Taylor Hill, Casie Sharp, Rachel Moore, Taleanna Trammell and Mercedes Rideout.
Four-Year Athlete Awards were also given to a select group of student-athletes who had dedicated themselves to a single sport program for their entire four-year career at GMC.
The four-year student-athletes and their sports are as follows:
Women's Soccer – Casie Sharp; Men's Soccer – Ryan Crozier, Ethan Cooper and Stefan Zdziarski; Men's Basketball – Dakota Dodson, Javier Lugris.
A trio of special distinction awards was handed out to Thomas Brown, Mercedes Rideout and Dakota Dodson. Brown was recognized for eclipsing 1000 points in his career having scored 1,365 overall. For breaking the all-time 3-pointers made in a season mark with 62, Rideout was congratulated for her marksmanship on the court. Dakota Dodson broke a long-standing record with his career-low round of 76 this past fall.
Shipley distributed his first Director's Award to James Thivierge for his unwavering support of the student-athletes and the work he does in the Waldron Athletic Center.
The evening was capped off with the presentation of the Male and Female James M. Pollock "Eagle" Awards. This year's male recipient went to Ethan Cooper for his four-year contributions to the soccer program and two years with the men's lacrosse team, while Casie Sharp came away as the female recipient thanks to her dedication to a trio of sports and support of several others.