Mac athletes honoured for OUA, CIS efforts

McMaster University announced the Athletic Award winners at its 84th Annual Athletic Awards Ceremony on Thursday (March 27) and for the first time divided the Male and Female athletes of the year award into team sport and individual sport winners.

The Female Athlete of the Year (Team Sport) was Lindsay Degroot (Thedford, ON) from the McMaster women’s basketball team. Degroot was named the Ontario University Athletics West player of the year and first team Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) All-Canadian. The fourth-year guard, led McMaster to an OUA championship and CIS bronze medal.

The Female Athlete of the Year (Individual Sport) was Carly Cermak (Cambridge) from the McMaster swim team. Cermak captured three medals at the OUA championship this year. She won gold medals in the 400m freestyle and 200m individual, while taking home silver in the 200m individual medley.

The Male Athlete of the Year (Individual Sport) was Dave Rennalls (Mississauga). Rennalls capped off his fifth and final year as a Marauder with gold medal performances at both the OUA and CIS Wrestling Championships.

The Male Athlete of the Year (Team Sport) was Nathan Groenveld (Welland). Groenveld became the first Marauder named a first-team All-Canadian since 1992. The fourth-year middle helped lead McMaster to a perfect 20-0 regular season record and an OUA Championship.

The Dr. Ray Johnson Award for the graduating male student-athlete who radiates the “spirit of McMaster” was presented to Parrish Offer (Kingston). Offer is a four-time captain of the McMaster volleyball team, teaching assistant and McMaster Student Union manager.

The Dr. Edna Guest Award for the graduating female student-athlete who radiates Mac spirit , went to Leah Henderson (Forest, ON). Henderson is a striker on the soccer team and employee of McMaster Athletics and Recreation, Pulse Fitness Centre, concessions, as well as outdoor recreation and summer camps.

The Mel and Marilyn Hawkrigg Award for outstanding sportsmanship for a male student-athlete was presented to Offer, a double winner on the evening. Offer’s positive outlook, patience and hard-work helped McMaster improve each year over the past five seasons to earn the team’s first OUA championship since 1991-92. This past summer, Offer donated his earnings from the McMaster volleyball summer camp to the Boys and Girls club to pay for a disadvantaged child to attend the McMaster volleyball camp.

The Mel and Marilyn Hawkrigg Award for outstanding sportsmanship for a female student-athlete was presented to Rachel Hart (Ancaster) from the McMaster basketball team. Hart portrayed exemplary conduct and composure during a very difficult year personally, leaving a lasting impact on everyone who came into contact with her. Her selflessness was recognized with two major CIS awards – defensive player of the year and the Tracey MacLeod award for determination, perseverance and unwavering spirit.

The Les Prince Award for community service was presented to Stephanie Carty (Caledonia) from the swim team. Carty organized the swim team to cook a meal for the Ronald McDonald House. She also organized the swim team to participate in the Terry Fox run, raising $3,000 for cancer research.

The Joyce Wignall Award for community outreach performed by a team was presented to the McMaster swim team. The McMaster swim team provided swimming lessons and ran a swim meet for the Boys and Girls club in East Hamilton. In addition to the Terry Fox and Ronald McDonald efforts, the team collected canned goods for Hamilton food share over the holiday season. Tonight (Friday) the team will participate in the Relay for Life in support of the Canadian Cancer Society.

The Bruce Cochrane Award for service to a varsity athletic team was presented to both Stefan Kegel, and Dan Russell. Kegel has served as the swim team therapist for the past three-seasons. Russell served as the video technician for the men’s volleyball team.

McMaster also announced the Most Valuable Players from each team. They are:

Amanda Durdan, Badminton; Graham Dalseg, Badminton; Michael May, Baseball; Lindsay DeGroot, Basketball; Mouctar Diaby, Basketball; Laura Byers, Cheerleading; Jessica Pearo, Cross-Country; Larry Abbott, Cross-Country; Sam Malone, Fastpitch; Nora Magarody, Fencing; Michael Irvine, Fencing; Jacquiline Evans, Field Hockey; Nicki Britten, Figure Skating; Adam Archibald and Simon Binder, Football; Candi Campbell, and Matt Jacobs, Golf; Erin Berenbaum, Gymnastics; Tali Landgraff, and David Hogarth, Lacrosse; Elise McCormick and Chris Zulinov, Rowing; Sarah Van Hoof and Keegan Selby, Rugby; Cheryl Druchok and Kyle Grootenboer, Soccer; Karen Ho and Ahmed Shohayeb, Squash; Carly Cermak and Simon Gabsch, Swimming; Charlotte Peer, Synchro Swim; Lee Chapman and Artur Suski, Tennis; Jill Wyman, Noah Fleming, Erika Scott, and Nick Holbik-Siu, Track & Field; Jennifer Holt and Nathan Groenveld, Volleyball; Jen Doto and Richard Saunders, Water Polo; Meghan Bryden and Dave Rennalls, Wrestling.