By Dominic Rapposelli
Elm Staff Writer
On April 26, Washington College’s athletics department gathered in the Alonzo G. and Virginia Gent Decker Theater in the Daniel Z. Gibson Center for the Arts for their annual athletic awards ceremony.
Two awards were given out for each team. Most Improved Player (MIP) and Most Valuable Player (MVP) were voted on by team members and presented to players deserving of recognition in their eyes.
In a divergence from the norm, the WC women’s basketball team chose to instead offer co-MVP honors to seniors Joy Sanders and Andrea Prestianne. This decision was made in recognition of the ways in which the two of them helped lead WC women’s basketball to back-to-back playoff appearances for the first time in program history.
Prestianne was appreciative of the splitting of the award between her and her teammate.
“I was so happy for Joy,” she said. “Like coach said, we’re a one-two-punch.”
In addition to team awards, academic awards which acknowledge and honor excellence in their intertwined athletic and academic endeavors were given to athletes.
Prestianne also received the Eldrige Eliason Award. This award is given to senior athletes who accomplished the most athletically while also retaining standing in the upper half of their class.
Meanwhile, the WC swimming teams earned the Community Service Award for their work in teaching adult swim lessons to residents of Chestertown.
“To be recognized for our commitment to serving the community is a great honor and shows that we care about helping out those who support us in every aspect of our experience at WC,” said senior Gage Mandrell.
Mandrell also received the senior male athlete award, which recognizes the senior athlete who has contributed the most to WC athletics. Mandrell said the award “meant a lot.”
“To see that my hard work isn’t going unnoticed is great,” Mandrell said.
Junior Anthony Pinto, the men’s soccer starting goalie, received the Elizabeth “Bo” Blanchard Award, which is given to the junior athlete who best exemplifies the qualities of enthusiasm, dedication, and sportsmanship.
“Being a student always comes first, and my parents instilled that in me at a young age, so this award goes out to them,” Pinto said.
The overall ceremony is designed to properly acknowledge the athletic endeavors and values that make a student athlete at WC.
“To be recognized for something like this is of the utmost importance,” Mandrell said.
These awards evidence that the hard work athletes put in at WC does not go unnoticed. Many athletes from WC achieve first or second team Centennial Conference Honor Roll for their non-athletic contributions to the College and the Conference at large.
“We come here to get a degree but also [to] compete,” Prestianne said. “I think it proves exactly just what a student athlete is.”
The full list of winners can be found on the WC athletics website.
Elm Archive Photo
Photo Caption: Senior Andrea Prestianne was one of two women’s basketball players to earn MVP this year.