Case Western Reserve University Athletics handed out its annual department awards tonight at the 2008 All-Sports Banquet in Horsburgh Gymnasium. Below are the description of each award and the winners.
Four-year varsity participant with highest GPA.
Rebecca Winarski (Germantown, WI) - Women’s swimming and diving: Winarski has a 3.89 GPA and will graduate in May with a degree in mathematics.
Given to the female freshman, sophomore, or junior student-athlete, who has made a strong contribution to the Women’s Intercollegiate Sports Program, maintained a high level of academic achievement, shown leadership in the team and contributed service to the Department and University.
Ashleigh Tondo (McDonald, OH) - Women’s basketball: Tondo, a biology major and pre-med student, was a first-team All-University Athletic Association selection at guard this past season and started all 25 games for the Spartans. She averaged a team-best 14.9 points per-game (2nd in UAA) and a league-leading 4.8 assists per-game this past season.
The award is given to the outstanding senior who has made a strong contribution to the Women’s Intercollegiate Sports Program, maintained a high level of academic achievement, shown leadership in team, and contributed service to the department and University.
Lauren Seeds (Pickerington, OH) - Softball: In four seasons at Case Western Reserve, Seeds has played in every game, totaling 163. She was a second-team All-UAA selection in 2007 after batting .353 with 13 doubles and 17 RBIs. Seeds finished her senior season with a .348 batting average, a team-high 48 hits and scored 28 runs. A cognitive science and psychology major, Seeds will graduate in May.
The award is given to the outstanding freshman, sophomore, or junior who has demonstrated leadership in the team, maintained good academic standing in the University, demonstrated good sportsmanship, and made a contribution to the department and University.
Drew Gardella (Sagamore Hills, OH) - Wrestling: Gardella, a junior, finished the 2008 season with a 21-4 record on the mat, moving his career-record to 92-24 in three seasons at Case Western Reserve. He was given the 2008 University Athletic Association Most Outstanding Wrestler Award after finishing undefeated at the UAA Championships at New York University. Gardella, a biology, cognitive science and psychology triple major, was part of Case’s National Wrestling Coaches Association Scholar All-American team last season.
Is presented annually to the senior male student-athlete who has made the most outstanding contribution to Case Western Reserve University through the athletics program. The selection is based on if he demonstrated leadership in the team, maintained good academic standing in the University, demonstrated good sportsmanship, participated in at least two years in the Case athletics program, and demonstrated loyalty to team and University.
Brandon Jeffries (Northfield, OH) - Football & Track: Jeffries was a four-year starter on the offensive line for the Spartans, earning Honorable Mention All-UAA accolades his first three seasons before earning first-team honors this past fall. Jeffries also earned second-team all-region honors from D3Football.com this past season, starting all 12 games for the Spartans at center. In track and field, he is an accomplished thrower, as he finished first in the weight throw at the Spartan Relays this past winter and finished runner-up in the shot put and weight throw at the UAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. At the UAA Outdoor Championships this* season, Jeffries took second in the shot put.
This award honors the individual who best exemplifies the attributes of the Case Western Reserve University student-athlete in the spirit of legendary coach, mentor and friend William "Bill Sudeck. Coach Sudeck spent more than half his life - 46 years - shaping the young minds of cross country, basketball, and track and field athletes. The award is given to the student-athlete that has demonstrated and achieved significant athletic accomplishments, academic achievements, engagement in campus activities, and has shown leadership in athletics and in the classroom.
Kevin Bigart (Naperville, IL) - Men’s soccer: Junior forward Kevin Bigart started and played in all 18 games for the Spartans this past fall, scoring six goals and tallying two assists. Not only was Bigart a first-team All-UAA selection, but he earned second-team Academic All-American accolades. Bigart also garnered first-team All-Region and All-Ohio honors, as well as first-team All-Academic honors by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. A chemistry and pre-med student, Bigart led the Spartans to 12 victories this past fall and a No. 2 national ranking during the season.
Andrea Fischione (Export, PA) - Cross country & Track: Freshman Fischione had a breakout season for the Spartans in cross country, and her success has carried over to the track and field team. In cross country, Fischione finished third among all Division-III runners at the All-Ohio Invitational, earning herself second-team All-UAA honors and a trip to the NCAA Championships. Fischione has also run consistent in track and field this winter and spring.
Sam Coffey (Middletown, OH) - Football: Freshman Coffey proved to have ice in his veins on several occasions this past fall, most notably when he drilled the game-winning field goal as time expired against conference rival Carnegie Mellon, and in the regular season finale when his career-long 42-yard field goal propelled the Spartans to a 20-17 victory over Ohio Wesleyan. Coffey was named the University Athletic Association Athlete of the Week on Special Teams six times this, earning him first-team All-UAA honors. He led the Spartans in total points (85) and made 12-of-17 field goals and 49-of-51 PATs.
Esther Erb (Richmond, VA) - Cross country & Track: Senior runner Erb will leave Case Western Reserve University as one of the most accomplished athletes in school history. She has competed in a total of eight NCAA Division-III Championships, and has already qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships this spring in the 10,000-meter run. She has been named an All-American twice in cross country, once in indoor track and field and once in outdoor track and field. In cross country, she claimed the University’s first-ever University Athletic Association title in women’s cross country and was named the Great Lakes Runner of the Year. She is the first female in UAA history to accomplish the Triple Crown, as she won Most Outstanding Performer [running events] in both indoor and outdoor track as well as the individual title in cross country. This past fall, she won six consecutive races from Sept. 15-Nov. 17, including the All-Ohio Championships, where she bested a field composed of NCAA Division I, II, III and NAIA runners. During the indoor track season, Erb ran a personal-best time of 17:17.21 in the 5,000-meter run, placing fourth overall and earning All-American accolades. Her first place finish in the 10,000-meter run at the Walt Disney Invitational already qualified her for the NCAA D-III Outdoor Track and Field Championships where she will have a chance to earn her fifth All-American award. At the UAA Outdoor Championships in Chicago, Erb took home titles in both the 1,500 and 5,000-meter run. Her time of 17:22.20 in the 5,000-meter run is a UAA record, a track record at the University of Chicago and an NCAA Division III provisional qualifying time.
Matt Paglia (Pittsburgh, PA) - Men’s soccer: Junior forward Paglia started in 17 games for the Spartans this past fall, scoring a team-best eight goals and tallying one assist. A first-team All-UAA selection, Paglia was named the UAA Athlete of the Week twice this past season, including Oct. 2 after he netted three goals in Case’s 3-0 victory over the College of Wooster. He was named a third-team All-American by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and was a first-team all-region selection by NSCAA, a first-team All-Ohio selection, and a second-team all-region selection by D3Kicks.com. A nursing major, Paglia led the Spartans to 12 wins this past fall and a No. 2 national ranking during the season.
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