Laurentian Voyageurs hand out hardware at year-end awards

Laurentian Voyageurs hand out hardware at year-end awards
SUDBURY, ON –Laurentian University Athletics handed out their annual awards on Thursday night.  Leading the way was soccer player Amy-Lynn Pitton and basketball player Alex Ratté, who were named the Female and Male Athletes of the Year.  Cailey Robertson and Dario & Julie Zulichtook home the Special Voyageur Award while Omar Allison and Michelle Kennedy earned the Investors Group Community Service Awards.
Pitton, a Brampton, Ontario native, in her fourth year at Laurentian, was a standout on the pitch in 2013-14.  After anchoring a defence that allowed only 14 goals in 16 games and had only 3 losses on the season, Pitton, the team captain, was named a first-team OUA All-Star for the second consecutive year and is a 4-time OUA All-Star.
Ratté, a native of Ottawa, repeats as the Male Athlete of the Year after having a great season.Ratté’s win marks the fourth consecutive year a member of the men’s basketball team has won the awardAfter finishing second in the OUA and third in the CIS scoring race with 24.5 points per game, Ratté was named an OUA East Second Team All-Star.  He finished 1st in the CIS in field goals made with 200 and 2nd in the country in 3pt field goals made with 62.  Ratté also set a Voyageurs single game scoring record as he dropped 48 points on the Windsor Lancers this season.
Women’s soccer trainer, Cailey Robertson, and Dario & Julie Zulichwere honoured by receiving the Special Voyageur Award.  This prestigious award is presented to someone outside of the immediate Voyageurs’ family who has made an outstanding contribution to Laurentian Voyageur Athletics.
Robertson joined the Voyageurs’ women’s soccer team in 2009. Following two injury plagued seasons, she decided to hang up the cleats and join the training staff where she blossomed in her role of trainer-manager.  On top of her diligent care of the girls on the team, Robertson has run countless fundraisers in support of the team, and more importantly in support of children with cancer, and has spearheaded the annual Christmas gift exchange with a local elementary school and children in need.
Dario & Julie Zulich have been great supporters of the Voyageurs and, through the Sudbury Families Initiative, the Zulich family hasmade a long term commitment to support Laurentian Voyageur Athletics in their pursuit of excellence.
The Investors Group Community Service Awardrecognizesthose Voyageurs who wear the Blue and Gold with pride throughout the Greater Sudbury community and beyond.  Receiving this year’s awards were Omar Allison (Brampton, ON) and Michelle Kennedy (London, ON).
Allison has dedicated much of his free time to the Sudbury soccer community, gaining a lot of appreciation and compassion for the youth in the north.  For the last two years he has demonstrated his knowledge and true enthusiasm for soccer by taking charge of practices, training sessions, and coaching games for the boys.  Most of his leisure time is dedicated to coaching several boys’ youth teams and he has committed his Tuesday and Thursday evenings along with his Saturday and Sunday mornings to the boys, becoming an effective and admirable role model for the 7-16 year old local soccer players.
When she is not training or competing, Kennedy is volunteering her time throughout the Greater Sudbury and the province.  Kennedy has undertaken such initiatives as tutoring a student with a learning disability in one-on-one sessions in mathematics, being matched with a first year indigenous student, acting as a guide and resource in assisting this student in developing strategies to succeed in post-secondary education, volunteeringin Moose Factory facilitating a reading camp to strengthen reading, writing and math skills through arts, crafts, sports, reading and games and volunteering as a running guide/coach for a high-school vision-impaired runner.
Team awards were also handed out on Thursday night in Alumni Hall.  Here are the recipients from the various teams.
Men’s Golf
Rookie of the Year – Ryan Lafreniere
Most Improved – Jordan Couture
MVP – Chase Woitowich
Men’s Wrestling
Most Improved – Ryan Karn
MVP – Dylan Galloway
Women’s Wrestling
Most Improved – Emily Morgan
MVP – Samantha Demers
Men’s Nordic Skiing
Rookie of the Year – Thomas Gore
Most Improved – Ewan Craig
MVP – Petri Bailey
Women’s Nordic Skiing
Rookie of the Year – Maddie Nolan
Most Improved – Jillian Mayhew
MVP – Candace Ball
Women’s Cross Country Running
Rookie of the Year – Marissa Lobert
Most Improved – Michelle Kennedy
MVP – Samantha Edwards
Women’s Indoor Track
Rookie of the Year – Marissa Lobert
Most Improved – Alyssa Bedard
MVP – Adrienne Wilson
Women’s Soccer 
Rookie of the Year – Heather Gilbert
Most Improved – Dina Mandolesi
MVP – Amy-Lynn Pitton
Men’s Soccer
Rookie of the Year – Joel Levac
Most Improved – Matt Dykstra
MVP – Cameron Brooks
Rookie of the Year – Ian Walters
Most Improved – Brad Lauzon
MVP – Cameron Genge
Men’s Swimming
Rookie of the Year – David Ahong
Most Improved – Jordan Hotta
MVP – Nicholas Lapointe
Women’s Swimming 
Rookie of the Year – Julie Langlois
Most Improved – TiernayColquhoun
MVPs – Julie Langlois &Lea Paulus
Men’s Basketball
Rookie of the Year – GherickUneau
Most Improved – Tychon Carter-Newman
MVPs – Alex Ratte
Women’s Basketball
Rookie of the Year – L’Ashante Henry
Most Improved – Emily Case
MVP – Emma Decloe
Women’s Rowing
Rookie of the Year – Jessica Bray
Most Improved – Kaitlyn Young
MVP – Emily Jago
Men’s Rowing
Rookie of the Year – Nick Heffernan
Most Improved – Dennis Orr
MVP – Dylan Wing
Women’s Curling 
Rookie of the Year – Paige Droog
Most Improved – Courtney Andrey
MVP – Cassandra Rees
Men’s Curling
Rookie of the Year – Joe Greco
Most Improved – Steven McDonald
MVP – Billy Mekers
Men’s Hockey 
Rookie of the Year – Nick Esposto
Most Improved – Tyler Gliebe
MVP – Alain Valiquette
Ma Culley Award - Vincent Llorca
Women’s Hockey
Rookie of the Year – Laura Deller
Most Improved – Mikayla Ferlaino
MVP – Julie Hebert
Women’s Hockey Pride and Tradition Award - Stephanie Bonin
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