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Annual Rhettys Recognize Outstanding Student-Athletes

Leslie Sheehan, Todd Klipp also given awards

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It was a celebratory affair at the GSU Monday night, as BU Athletics recognized the achievements of its top student-athletes during the annual end-of-the-year award ceremony, rechristened the Rhettys. The awards honored student-athletes’ contributions in three areas: athletics, academics, and community service.

“It’s important that as a department, we support each other, we inspire each other, and we celebrate each other no matter what individual team you’re on and what sport you play,” Drew Marrochello, director of Athletics, told the audience.

The Gordon “Mickey” Cochrane Award, presented to BU’s top male athlete, went to men’s hockey’s Jordan Greenway (CGS’17, CAS’19). During the 2018 Winter Olympics, Greenway made history as the first African American to play on Team USA Hockey. Greenway scored his first NHL goal on April 15 after signing a three-year entry-level deal with the Minnesota Wild in March.

The Mildred Barnes Award, given annually to BU’s top female athlete, saw two winners this year: women’s hockey’s Victoria Bach (CGS’16, COM’18) and field hockey’s Ally Hammel (CGS’17, Sargent’19). Earlier this spring, Bach was named one of three finalists for the Patty Kazmaier Award, given to the top female college ice hockey player in the United States. Hammel became the first Terrier to be chosen the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Northeast Region Player of the Year.

Some new awards were introduced at this year’s ceremony, among them the Bruce Lehane Coaching Award, named in honor of BU’s 35-year cross country coaching legend who died last September.

The award will be presented annually to a head or assistant coach “who has embodied the holistic, values-based, caring approach” Lehane demonstrated during his coaching career, Marrochello said in introducing the inaugural winner, women’s tennis head coach Lesley Sheehan (SED’84).

Several awards acknowledged student-athletes’ academic performance: the E. Ray Speare Award, for the top male scholar-athlete, went to Jack Wilson (Questrom’18) of men’s lacrosse, while Grace Anderson (CAS’18), of women’s swimming and diving, won the Gretchen Schuyler Award, bestowed on the top female scholar-athlete. The women’s tennis Terriers were awarded the Team GPA Award (3.61).

Other winners during the evening were Todd Klipp, retiring BU senior vice president, senior counsel, and Board of Trustees secretary, who received the Joseph P. Mercurio Campus Community Recognition Award; Lizzie Tillo (Questrom’18) of women’s swimming and diving, winner of the Student-Athlete Service Award; and men’s lacrosse’s Conor Okmin (Questrom’18) and softball’s Brittany Younan (CAS’17, Questrom’17, MET’18), were both honored with the John B. Simpson Award, given to seniors who have demonstrated enthusiasm and leadership. Women’s soccer’s Rachel Bloznalis (Sargent’17, SPH’19), who was unable to attend, was named winner of the Woman of the Year Award.

This year’s ceremony also featured a newly renamed category of prizes, dubbed the Athlete Choice Awards, whose winners are nominated and voted on by fellow student-athletes: Male and Female Unsung Hero Awards, Male and Female Breakout Athlete Awards, Upset of the Year Award, Play of the Year Award, and Moment of the Year Award.

The Unsung Hero Awards went to Andrew Marsh (CAS’21), of men’s rowing, and Erin O’Neil (SHA’18), of women’s ice hockey. Men’s hockey’s Shane Bowers (CGS’19) and women’s soccer’s Anna Heilferty (CAS’21) won the Breakout Athlete Awards.

The Upset of the Year Award was given to the softball team in recognition of its 4-3 win over Oklahoma, the nation’s top-ranked team, on February 17. The winner of the Play of the Year Award was Bach, whose goal against Boston College during February’s Beanpot Championship made her the first woman in Terrier hockey history to score 100 career goals. Finally, Paul Luevano (CGS’18) of men’s cross country won the Moment of the Year Award for capturing the Patriot League individual title.

Jonathan Chang can be reached at jchang19@bu.edu.

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