POULTNEY, Vt. – The Green Mountain College athletic department closed the books on another successful year of sports by hosting its annual athletic awards ceremony on Tuesday, May 1st.
Director of Athletics Kip Shipley addressed the student-athletes and thanked them for their hard work and dedication to the College's sports teams during the year. Shipley noted several impressive achievements over the year, including the improved success of the women’s soccer and basketball teams, the women’s volleyball team reaching the NAC playoffs for the first time in over four years, the women’s cross country victory at Southern Vermont and having doubled the winning percentage from last year. He finished with repeating the recent news that GMC had been accepted into the NAIA and the advantages the student-athletes will enjoy with the new affiliation.
President Bob Allen echoed Shipley's remarks about how impressed he was with the commitment of the student-athletes this year and thanked them for their hard work and effort on the field and in the classroom.
The first individual award 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 2017-18 scholar-athletes included: Bailey Aaron, Bobby Buttrick, Brandon Fain, Claire Chapman, Danjung Yoon, Griffin Shelor, Jacob Nelson, Jacob Plum, Jackie Kelsey, Jannelle O’Connell, Jiayong Chen, Kali Bushey, Katelyn Mann, Kathryn Nitzschke, Lucas Krauss, Matt Fadness, Miranda Bailey-Russomano, Samuel Eisenhaur, and Sophie Elias.
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: Anneli Brandt (Women's Cross Country), Jacob Nelson (Men's Cross Country), Griffin Shelor (Men's Soccer), Mollie O’Hara (Women's Soccer), Will Durant (Golf), Estela Felix Almeida (Volleyball), Mercedes Rideout (Women's Basketball), Diante Warner (Men's Basketball), Dominic Wright (Men's Lacrosse), and Paige Vlahos (Women's Tennis.
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:
Men's Cross Country – Nick Lamson; Men's Basketball – Diante Warner; Men's Lacrosse – Blake Hay, Dominic Wright.
A special distinction award was handed out to Mercedes Rideout for breaking her own all-time 3-pointers made in a season mark with 89, Rideout was congratulated for her marksmanship on the court and as the College leaves the NCAA Division III she will now hold the all-time mark for 3-pointers in a career with 208.
Shipley distributed his Director's Award to Matthew Couture for his steady support of the student-athletes and the work he does in the Registrar’s Office helping with eligibility and evaluating credits.
The evening was capped off with the presentation of the Female and Male Eagle Service Awards. This year's female recipient went to Chelsea Wimble for her three-year contributions to the lacrosse programs and the great work she provided to the campus and community, while Naing Aung emerged as the male recipient thanks to his constant volunteer work and leadership positions held campus wide and into the community sector. He accomplished all of this service while dedicating three years to the men’s soccer program.