May 5, 2008

Brown Honors Student-Athletes at 18th Annual All-Sports Banquet

May 5, 2008

Providence, RI - On Monday evening, Brown Athletics celebrated the 2007-08 athletics season at its 18th Annual All-Sports Banquet. Nine-hundred-plus student-athletes representing Brown's 37 intercollegiate varsity teams came together to celebrate another exceptional year and honor some outstanding performances on and off the field.

In addition to the following student-athlete awards, Brown Athletics Appreciation Awards were presented to senior Moses Riner, the founder of BrowNation, Interim Vice President for Campus and Student Life Russell Carey '91, and Associate Vice President for Development Ron Dalgliesh '91. The Brown Athletics Post-Graduate Scholarship Award was presented to women's crew senior Sarah Wu (North Andover, MA) and men's crew senior Paul Strombom (Seattle, WA). And of course, in a yearly tradition, 18 students from Vartan Gregorian Elementary School at Fox Point received special recognition for academic achievement.

Kate Silver '86 Award
This year's recipient of the Kate Silver '86 Award, given to the outstanding first-year female athlete, is freshman tennis standout Bianca Aboubakare (Orange, CA). Bianca made an immediate impact on the team this season, opening her collegiate career with six straight singles wins and never looking back, en route to a 28-6 singles record. The unanimous Ivy League Rookie of the Year, Bianca was also a unanimous First Team All-Ivy selection in both singles and in doubles with partner Marisa Schonfeld '11 (Washington, DC), earning a 6-1 Ivy singles record and a 5-2 doubles record against teams from the Ancient Eight. Playing #1 singles and #1 doubles, Bianca amassed 20 doubles wins in addition to her 28 singles victories for a total of 48 wins. These marks are second all-time at Brown (singles), sixth all-time at Brown (doubles), and fourth all-time at Brown (combined) for wins in a season. In addition, she and Schonfeld broke Brown's record for doubles wins by a single team in a season with 19.

Joseph V. Paterno '50 Award
As the outstanding first-year male athlete, freshman men's soccer goalie Paul Grandstrand (Orono, MN) is this year's recipient of the Joseph V. Paterno '50 Award. The 2007 Ivy League Rookie of the Year, Grandstrand put up a 10-1-1 record in goal this season as the Bears reached as high as second in the national rankings. He also was 6-0-0 in the Ivy League, helping to lead Brown to an undefeated record in the Ancient Eight and an Ivy League Championship. Grandstrand was also named to College Soccer News' All-Freshman First Team, and was named Second Team All-Ivy. He posted five shutouts, and was named Ivy League Rookie of the Week three times.

Arlene Gorton '52 Cup
Senior rower Sarah Wu (North Andover, MA) is the 2008 recipient of the Arlene Gorton '52 Cup, given to the female varsity athlete who most consistently displays the ideals of sportsmanship and fair play. Wu is in the midst of her final season as the first Varsity Eight coxswain for the Bears' NCAA Champion women's crew. She has an outstanding record for success, but it is her sportsmanship that sets her apart. Sarah is a champion at reaching out to the opposing teams in an authentic and truly gracious manner, without compromising the traditions of rivalry. She has set an example for her teammates and for her coaches of how to be competitive on the water, but gracious and utterly courteous off the water.

David Zucconi '55 Trophy
One of two career 1,000-point scorers on the men's basketball team this season, senior Damon Huffman (Petoskey, MI) is this year's recipient of the David Zucconi '55 Trophy as the male varsity athlete who most consistently displays the ideals of sportsmanship and fair play. Huffman was a captain of this year's team, which won a school-record 19 games and earned an appearance in the inaugural College Basketball Invitational. A First Team All-Ivy selection, Huffman's coaches call him a "tremendous role model for his teammates by how he went about his business on a daily basis, with his relentless work ethic and great character." Huffman finishes his career as Brown's eighth all-time leading scorer, establishing a new record for career three-point baskets with 232 and a new single-season record with 82. He closed his career with a 39-point performance against Ohio in the opening round of the CBI, tying Brown's single-game record with nine three-pointers.

Bessie H. Rudd Award
Senior women's lacrosse player Hillary Anderson (Hinesburg, VT) is this year's recipient of the Bessie H. Rudd Award, given to the female varsity athlete who has done the most to promote women's sports during the year. It is based on enthusiasm, spirit and leadership. A four-year member of the women's lacrosse team, there is not much Hillary has not done on campus or abroad to promote Brown, athletics, and student-athlete leadership. An inaugural recipient of the Royce Fellowship, this past summer, Hillary spent eight weeks in South Africa using sport to connect with the population affected by secondary transmission of HIV. She has served and founded several initiatives and organizations across campus, including the Sustainable Food Initiative, the co-chair of SAAC's Faculty-Liaison Program, an Athletic Peer Advisor, a Meiklejohn Advisor, and a member of Eco-Reps Recycling. Her activism across campus has given faculty and staff the opportunity to see student-athletes' impressive commitment to athletics, community, and academics.

Cliff Stevenson Award
Junior men's soccer captain Dylan Sheehan (Wolfville, NS) is this year's recipient of the Cliff Stevenson Award as the male varsity athlete who best exemplifies boundless enthusiasm, indomitable spirit and devotion to the quality of life at Brown and the surrounding community. Sheehan's face is familiar to as many off the field as it is on the field, where he was the Bears' leading scorer and a First Team All-Ivy honoree after scoring 10 goals and six assists. A co-president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council, Sheehan chairs the Dean and Faculty Liaison program and was the race day committee chair for the Dave Zucconi '55 5K Race. Sheehan is a student representative to the Brown University Sports Foundation and regularly volunteers at local elementary schools, including regularly helping in Ms. Alfonso's class at the Vartan Gregorian Elementary School. He coordinates Brown men's soccer's Project GOAL (Greater Opportunities for Athletes to Learn), an afternoon program for underprivileged children in greater Providence. He was also a Second Team CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American and an Academic All-Ivy recipient this fall.

Marjorie Brown Smith Award
This year's recipient of the Marjorie Brown Smith Award as the top female varsity athlete is junior gymnast Jennifer Sobuta (Maynard, MA). Sobuta was a Second Team USAG All-American after finishing eighth on the uneven bars and seventh on the balance beam at the USAG Collegiate Nationals. At the Ivy Classic, Sobuta earned First Team honors on the bars, winning the event with a 9.775, and in the all-around, finishing second with a 37.950, despite an ankle injury days before the event. She was a two-time ECAC Gymnast of the Week, and narrowly missed qualifying for NCAA Regionals. Sobuta has also excelled in the classroom, earning Academic All-Ivy and ECAC Scholar Athlete honors.

Fritz Pollard '19 Trophy
Junior men's lacrosse goalie Jordan Burke (Potomac, MD) is this year's recipient of the Fritz Pollard '19 Trophy, given to the outstanding male varsity athlete of the year. A nominee for the prestigious Tewaaraton Trophy, given to the top collegiate lacrosse player in the United States, Burke finished the season leading the nation with a .674 save percentage, averaging 13.2 saves per game, and was third in the nation with a 6.43 goals against average. A three-time Ivy League Player of the Week and two-time New England Player of the Week, Burke played a huge role in helping to lead the Bears to the 2008 Ivy League Championship, their first since 1995, posting an 11-3 overall record and a 5-1 mark in the Ancient Eight. A candidate for All-America honors, Burke was also recognized by Inside Lacrosse with their mid-season awards.