Published: Thursday, May 5, 2011
Updated: Tuesday, July 26, 2011 16:07
Alida Muller-Wehlau with President Bleicken after being named 2010-11 female student-athlete April 25.
The Armstrong Center was an athlete's paradise on April 25, as the Armstrong athletic department held its annual student-athlete awards banquet. Frank Sulkowski, Sports Director of WJCL-TV, emceed the banquet. Athletes from all teams were awarded academic, team and individual awards. A highlight tape of all 2010-11 sports was also shown at the banquet.
The tennis teams stole the show, winning both the male and female 2010-11 Student-Athlete of the Year awards. Armstrong president Linda Bleicken presented them with their awards.
Each team had one person awarded 2010 Best GPA and two individual awards. GPA awards were 3.0-3.24, 3.25-3.49, 3.5-3.74, 3.75-3.99 and 4.0. The seniors of each team were also recognized.
Men's golf had the 2010 best team GPA for men's sports while women's tennis won for women's sports. David Prussia had the best GPA for the men's cross- country team. Women's golf player Victoria Bennett, softball player Shelby Duff, men's basketball player Grant Domsic, women's basketball player Briana McFarland among others won best GPA for their teams. Only two student athletes had 4.0 GPAs in 2010: Kelli Bahr of the women's soccer team and volleyball senior Gwen Clarke.
There were six coach's awards issued. Four individuals were named MVPs for their teams.
Clarke received numerous awards on the evening. In addition to senior recognition, she was named the volleyball MVP and had the 2010 best GPA of the volleyball team. She was one of two athletes to carry a 4.0 GPA in 2010.
"It's a great reward for my work that I do off the court as well as the work I do on the court," Clarke said. "I think it's really important to be a well-rounded athlete, which is something I've tried to achieve in the last five years."
Among others awarded on the volleyball team, Christina Chow won the Volleyball Pirate Award and Torrie Bevolo with senior recognition.
Keyshore Williams was named men's basketball defensive player of the year. He said it was an honor to receive that award because he prides himself on defense.
"If I could get a huge block or rebound or stop the other team's best player for a few possessions, it gave us momentum," Williams said. "I wanted to be the person my team looked at as somebody who would have their back on the defensive side of ball games."
Chris Vandlandingham was named 2010-11 men's basketball offensive player of the year. It was well deserved as he earned All-PBC men's basketball honors last month and led the pirates in points per game this past season.
Men's tennis player Mikk Irdoja also scored big on awards. He won 2010 Best GPA for his team. He was happier for his fellow senior teammate Rafael Array and his accomplishments.
"I'm very proud of my teammate Rafael for being named the male athlete of the year," Irdoja said. "He has done a good job here and he really deserves it".
In addition to being named male student-athlete of the year, Array also was the men's tennis MVP and received senior recognition. Others awarded on the men's tennis team included Pedro Scocuglia with the men's tennis coach's award and Matus Mydla and Eudaldo Bonet with GPA awards.
Senior women's tennis player Alida Muller-Wehlau was named the female student-athlete of the Year.
"I didn't expect at all to get that award and I feel very honored to receive it," she said. "It's going to get a nice place at my new apartment. It's a really good memory from Armstrong."
Muller-Wehlau also had the 2010 best GPA for the women's tennis team. Senior teammate Tina Ronel was awarded the women's tennis coach's award.
A few other individual awards given out included the women's basketball Heart of a Pirate award to Arpine Amirkhanyan, the softball Most Valuable Pitcher to Megan Barnwell and Men's Cross-Country Best Runner to Eric Van Deventer.
Fifty athletes collected awards for having GPAs between 3.0 and 4.0. Thirty seniors were recognized from the 11 teams.
For a complete list of the athletes awarded, visit www.aasupirates.com