On Friday, April 12, the Niagara College Department of Athletics and Recreation formally concluded its 2012-13 intercollegiate athletics season with the 44th annual athletics awards banquet. The event also served as the 11th Niagara College Knights Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
The two biggest accolades of the evening were the Athlete of the Year award presentations. Shayne Petrusma of the Men’s Volleyball Program captured the top prize for Male Athlete of the Year, while Allana Arundell of the Women’s Basketball Program was named Female Athlete of the Year.
Petrusma, a fifth-year outside hitter from Bowmanville, Ontario, had an outstanding season for the Knights. The six-foot-six Paramedic student was named a CCAA All-Canadian, SIRC-CCAA Academic All-Canadian, and an OCAA First Team All-Star.
Arundell, a graduating fifth-year guard with the Women’s Basketball Program was named an OCAA Second-Team All-Star in her final season of collegiate play. The Toronto native and Child and Youth Worker student was also named a SIRC-CCAA Academic All-Canadian.
The evening’s other major award winners included; Rookies of the Year Jeff Scott (Men’s Volleyball) and Melanie Tanguay (women’s basketball), Top Leadership winners Jimmy Bilenga (Men’s Basketball) and Shelby Johnston (women’s basketball), Top Scholastic recipients Josh Giancola (Men’s Soccer) and Robyn Deklerk (Women’s Soccer), and the Ralph Nero Award (for a coach’s dedication to student-athlete recruitment and retention) Nathan Groenveld (Men’s Volleyball).
The Niagara College Knights Hall of Fame also welcomed three new inductees. Carrie Stratford-Collver and Heidi Bench were inducted in the Athlete category, while Bernd Franke was inducted as a builder.
Carrie Stratford-Collver played three seasons with the Niagara College Women’s Basketball program, leading the team to an OCAA Championship Silver Medal in 2003.
Heidi Bench enjoyed two outstanding seasons as a member of the Niagara College Women’s Volleyball program. Bench excelled both on the court and in the classroom, winning two OCAA West Division scoring titles, and two CCAA Academic All-Canadian awards.
Bernd Franke is the sports editor of the Welland Tribune and his commitment and dedication to covering Niagara College intercollegiate athletics has been instrumental in raising the profile of the Niagara College Knights in both the local community and across the province.
The 2012-13 season saw the Niagara College Knights intercollegiate athletics program earn its 31st OCAA Provincial Championship (Women’s Curling), capture an OCAA bronze medal (Golf), earn a CCAA individual silver medal (Golf – Robbie Ellis), receive an OCAA Rookie of the Year award (Jeff Scott – Men’s Volleyball), receive 37 OCAA All-Academic Selection, and have six student-athletes named SIRC-CCAA Academic All-Canadians.
Additionally, Niagara College hosted a CCAA National Championship for the second time in three years, when the institution hosted the 2013 Ironwood Wealth Management Group CCAA Men’s Volleyball National Championship.
The evening’s other award winners included:
Male Athlete of the Year – Shayne Petrusma (Men’s Volleyball)
Female Athlete of the Year – Allana Arundell (Women’s Basketball)
Male Rookie of the Year – Jeff Scott (Men’s Volleyball)
Female Rookie of the Year – Melanie Tanguay (Women’s Basketball)
Male Tournament Sports Athlete of the Year – Walker Arnott (Golf)
Female Tournament Sports Athlete of the Year – Melissa Borowski (Curling)
Male Outstanding Leadership Award – Jimmy Bilenga (Men’s Basketball)
Female Outstanding Leadership Award – Shelby Johnston (Women’s Basketball)
Male Scholastic Award – Joshua Giancola (Men’s Soccer)
Female Scholastic Award – Robyn Deklerk (Women’s Soccer)
Ralph Nero Award – Coach Nathan Groenveld (Men’s Volleyball)
Most Valuable Player – William Janetos
Leadership Award – Joseph D’Eramo
Scholastic Award – Joshua Giancola
Rookie of the Year – Kyle Brooks
Most Valuable Player – Brittany Johnston
Leadership Award – Julia Lake
Scholastic Award – Robyn Deklerk
Rookie of the Year – Robyn Deklerk
Most Valuable Player – Jimmy Bilenga
Leadership Award – Jimmy Bilenga
Scholastic Award – Darrington Clarke
Rookie of the Year – Aidan Alize-Minty
Most Valuable Player – Allana Arundell
Leadership Award – Shelby Johnston
Scholastic Award – Lauren Van Leerzem
Rookie of the Year – Melanie Tanguay
Most Valuable Player – Shayne Petrusma
Leadership Award – Brad Wall
Scholastic Award – Shayne Petrusma
Rookie of the Year – Jeff Scott
Most Valuable Player – Jenna Bray
Leadership Award – Lindsay Murray
Scholastic Award – Lindsay Murray
Rookie of the Year – Madelaine Busby
Most Valuable Player – Walker Arnott
Leadership Award – Chad Currie
Scholastic Award – Cole Kent
Rookie of the Year – Walker Arnott
Most Valuable Player – Melissa Borowski
Leadership Award – Matt Service
Scholastic Award – Katelynn Spanton
Rookie of the Year – Tess Brown