2010 Cannada West women's rugby awards and all-stars announced
Photo credit Rod Leland, Lethbridge Pronghorns
EDMONTON – Second-year Lethbridge Pronghorns flanker Kelsey Willoughby has been named 2010 Canada West women's rugby MVP.
A pre-Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Education student and U-20 Rugby Canada team member, Willoughby scored two tries during the conference season as the Pronghorns went 4-0 to finish in first place. As host of the 2010 Canada West championship, Lethbridge opened with a win over UBC and faced Alberta in the final for the lone berth available to CIS Nationals in November.
Kelsey's incredible athleticism and toughness enabled her to be an offensive and defensive power in conference play. She caused turnovers with her tackling and is a constant offensive threat with ball in hand," said Pronghorns head coach Neil Langevin
UBC scrum half Megan Hamm, who scored her first try of the season in Sunday's bronze medal game win over Victoria, has been voted conference Rookie of the Year.
Hamm, a native of Aldergrove, B.C., came to the Thunderbirds from the Abbotsford Rugby Club, where she has been a standout, as well as the national champion B.C. Senior Women's provincial program. With trademark seamless delivery and tenacious defensive tackles, she is also highly ranked as a scrum half within the Canadian National system.
"I was thrilled to attract Megan to university rugby this year," said UBC head coach Lesley McKenzie. "Her leadership at the base of the breakdown has given us dynamic options to attack with, and the combination of Megan, Radha Jain at 10 and Darcy Patterson at fullback has given us a serious attacking threat on third and fourth phase ball."
The Student-Athlete Community Service Award winner is Kim Gould of the Calgary Dinos.
While just a sophomore No. 8 player for the Dinos, Gould is a 2011 graduating Civil Engineering student, an Academic All-Canadian and chair of U of C Solar Decathlon program. The 22-year-old has also played for the Alberta U-23 rugby team.
This year's Coach of the Year is Brad Skene of the Victoria Vikes.
Skene is in his third year as head coach of the UVic Vikes. Under his guidance, the program has seen steady growth. The Vikes ended a nine-year losing streak in 2009, and in 2010 the team realized its best regular season record (2-2) since Canada West competition began in 1999, eventually placing fourth overall at the 2010 conference tournament.
The Duncan, B.C. native guided his team to wins over Calgary (32-22) and UBC (27-20) this season, and finished third in the conference standings. Skene was a former assistant on the Senior National team (2005, 2006) and head coach of Canada's Under-19 team (2004, 2005). As a player, he led the Vikes men's side to a 1997 Canadian University championship.
"Under Brad's guidance, the program has made major strides in the past couple of years," said Manager, Athletics James Keogh. "It's great to see Brad recognized for all his hard work and commitment to Vikes women's rugby."
Notable members of this year's Canada West All-Star team include Willoughby, Brandi Van Eeuwen and Shannon Court of Lethbridge, along with Alberta's Karlee Carbert, who were also All-Stars in 2009. Van Eeuwen has made the all-conference squad three straight years. All-Star Brittany Orr was 2007 CW Rookie of the Year & CIS Tournament MVP, and has been on the CIS All-Tournament team each of the past two seasons.
Following is a list of Women's Rugby awards and all-star selections and their respective schools:
Most Valuable Player:
Kelsey Willoughby, Lethbridge
Rookie of the Year:
Megan Hamm, UBC
Student Athlete/Community Service:
Kim Gould , Calgary
Coach of the Year:
Brad Skene, Victoria
Chelsey Minter, Victoria
Brandi Van Eeuwen, Lethbridge
Stacie Becker, Alberta
Abby Goodwin, Victoria
Louise Chavarie, Alberta
Megan Hamm, UBC
Laura Murphy-Burke, Lethbridge
Shannon Court, Lethbridge
Chelsea Guthrie, Alberta
Darcy Patterson, UBC
Brittany Orr, Lethbridge
Karlee Carbert, Alberta
Jesse Olynyk Victoria
Kelsey Willoughby, Lethbridge
Kim Gould - Calgary
As Canada West champions, the Lethbridge Pronghorns have qualified for the 2010 CIS championship, November 4-7 at Trent University in Peterborough, Ont.
About Canada West Universities Athletic Association
Canada West is consistently the most decorated of the four conferences in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS), winning at least 10 CIS national titles every year since 1997-98. Comprised of 14 schools, from the provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia, the CWUAA produces numerous major award winners and Academic All-Canadian student-athletes each year, with many going on to athletic success around the globe in pro leagues or events such as the Olympics, Paralympics or Universiade Games. For more information, visit www.canadawest.org; follow "cwuaa" on Twitter.
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