Annual Athletics Banquet Honours Thunderbirds

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Natasha Doroodian & Bryce Davis Named Student-Athletes of the Year

(SAULT STE. MARIE, ON – April 6, 2018):  Tonight, Algoma University and the Algoma University Thunderbirds Varsity Athletics Program recognized the hard work, dedication, skill, and academic achievements of their student-athletes at their annual varsity Athletics Banquet.

For the third time, Sault Ste. Marie-born Natasha Doroodian was awarded the honour of Female Student-Athlete of the Year. This past season, Doroodian earned fifth place at the U Sports Wrestling Championships and a silver medal at the OUA Wrestling Championships in the women’s 63-kilogram weight class. Doroodian had the highest finish for the women’s wrestling team. She had impressive results despite not having competed in the 2016-17 season due to extensive knee injuries.

On the men’s side, Bryce Davis earned the prestigious title of Male Student-Athlete of the Year. From Fenton, Michigan, Davis had the best performance this season for the Thunderbirds, earning silver medals at both the U Sports Wrestling Championships and OUA Wrestling Championships in the men’s 68-kilogram class. Davis’ national silver medal was the first-ever won by a male student-athlete in the history of the program since the Thunderbirds joined the U Sports conference in 2013. In addition to his medals, Davis was also named a Second Team All-Star and awarded the R. W. Pugh Fair Play Award at the U Sports Wrestling Championships.

The 1972 Algoma University College (AUC) downhill ski team was inducted into the Thunderbird Wall of Fame in the athlete category. Alpine skiers Norman Coulter, Paul Saarinen, Tim FitzGerald, and Don Shushkewich studied at AUC in the 1970s and competed in the sport of alpine skiing for Laurentian University. Any medals earned were considered Algoma’s. The foursome championed the slopes and earned gold and the Alpine Combined Trophy in 1972 at the Ontario University Athletics Association (OUAA) Championships, which later became the OUA. The team was coached by Brian Mealey. The team was the first-ever to compete and medal in the league for the Algoma Thunderbirds, and marked the beginning of the University’s lengthy varsity history. All four were present to receive their award.

The University also unveiled it’s new banner look for championship medalists and winners.

The following awards were also handed out:

Dr. Lukenda Thunderbird Service Award
Lauren Rogers

Academic Achievement Awards (highest academic achievement for their sport)
Karina Cole (women’s basketball)
Trevor Schulz (men’s basketball)
Lucia Luciani (cross-country running)
Keiko Larocque (women’s curling)
Andrew Vanderburg (men’s curling)
Natasha Doroodian (women’s wrestling)
Stephen Kreyenbuhl (men’s wrestling)
Sarah Van Boerdonk (women’s soccer)
Caleb Charlebois (men’s soccer)
Justin Rhude (Nordic skiing)

Women’s Basketball
Coaches Award – Jamerka Martin
Most Improved – Sawyer Fischer
Best Defensive Player – Mairead Dunn
Rookie of the Year – Darryn Lindquist
MVP – Sydney Resch

Men’s Basketball
Coaches Award – Cailum White
Most Improved – Ian Nash
Best Defensive Player – Reng Gum
Rookie of the Year – Pedro Costa
MVP – Nathan Riley

Cross-Country Running
Coaches Award – Daniel Senegal
Coaches Award – Marissa Ditoro
Most Improved – Kelsey Ochman
Most Improved – Taylor Dewling
Rookie of the Year – Annabell Storch
MVP – Talyn Tait
MVP – Lucia Luciani

Women’s Curling
Coaches Award – Anik Graves
Most Improved – Keiko Larocque
MVP – Lauren Rogers

Men’s Curling
Coaches Award – Johnathan Lalonde
Most Improved – HR Mandiv
MVP – Andrew Vanderburg

Nordic Skiing
Coaches Award – Marissa Ditoro
Rookie of the Year – Justin Rhude
MVP – Annabell Storch

Women’s Soccer
Coaches Award – Khadyja Claxton
Most Improved – Bailie Malmloff
Best Defensive Player – Riley Tubaro
Rookie of the Year – Elisa South
MVP – Alexis Trigiani-Kirkwood

Men’s Soccer
Coaches Award – Andrew Johnstone
Most Improved – Olawunmi Nurudeen
Best Defensive Player – Tanner Wilden
Rookie of the Year – Rafael Valentini
MVP – Tanner Wilden

Women’s Wrestling
Most Improved – Skyler Perron
Rookie of the Year – Riley Tubaro
Most Outstanding Wrestler – Natasha Doroodian

Men’s Wrestling
Most Improved – Brody Collison
Rookie of the Year – Jordan Campioni
Most Outstanding Wrestler – Bryce Davis

Thunderbird Award (to graduating student-athletes)
Cailum White (men’s basketball)
Reng Gum (men’s basketball)
Sydney Resch (women’s basketball)
Mairead Dunn (women’s basketball)
Lauren Rogers (women’s curling)
Shae-Lynn Dupuis (women’s curling)
Akeshia Trudeau (women’s curling)
Andrew Vanderburg (men’s curling)
Johnathan Lalonde (men’s curling)
Caleb Charlebois (men’s soccer)
Alexander Fera (men’s soccer)
Kristina Richer (women’s soccer)
Amy Francella (women’s soccer)
Taylor Bellini (women’s soccer)
Justin Rhude (Nordic skiing)

**NATASHA DOROODIAN WAS NOT AVAILABLE FOR A PHOTO AT THE TIME OF WRITING