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Student-athlete awards: 'Golden Goldys' set for Monday

  • Blog Post by: Roman Augustoviz
  • April 23, 2012 - 1:05 PM

The sixth annual Golden Goldys, a student-athlete awards event, will be held at 6 tonight at TCF Bank Stadium.

The event is modeled after ESPN’s ESPYS. Mike Grimm, the radio voice of  Gophers football and men’s basketball, will be the MC.

Athletes in spring sports in 2011 (baseball, men's and women's golf, rowing, softball, men's and women's outdoor track & field and men's and women's tennis) and the fall and winter sports of the 2010-11 athletic year will be recognized.

Here are the candidates -- and my guesses on the winner:

FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Megan Bozek, hockey
Amanda Kessel, hockey
Ashley Steenvoorden, swimming
Haley Spencer, swimming
Ashley Wittman, volleyball

My pick is Kessel. Leading scorer (32 goals, 80 points) on NCAA championship team by wide margin, 16 more points than next player.. 

MALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Harun Abda, track
Hassan Mead, track/cross country
Tony Nelson, wrestling
Kent Patterson, hockey
AJ Pettersen, baseball

Nelson. He won NCAA title at heavyweight as redshirt sophomore.

FEMALE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Rachel Banham, basketball
Sara Moulton, softball
Natallia Pintusava, tennis
Jessica Plant, swimming
Taylor Uhl, soccer

Moulton, a pitcher, won 28 games as a freshman and was the Big Ten's rookie of the year. She turned the softball program around. But Banham's and Uhl's seasons made this choice tough.

MALE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Andre Hollins, basketball
Dylan Ness, wrestling
Kyle Rau, hockey
CJ Smith, swimming
Logan Storley, wrestling

As a redshirt freshman, Ness finished second at 149 pounds in NCAA meet. Rau was a tough challenger for this award; he had 18 goals for a Frozen Four team.

FEMALE BREAKTHROUGH ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Tess Behrens, swimming
Megan Bozek, hockey
Maggie Keefer, diving
Mary Narzisi, golf
Dusti Russell, gymnastics

Keefer. Sophomore was All-America in three diving events at NCAA meet.

MALE BREAKTHROUGH ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
MarQueis Gray, football
Andrew Larsen, cross country
Nate Schmidt, hockey
Erik Van Rooyen, golf
Rodney Williams, basketball

Schmidt went from a player without a spot in the lineup as a freshman, to one of highest scoring defensemen in the country this past season.

BEST FEMALE TEAM
Golf
Hockey
Swimming & Diving
Volleyball

Hockey. Won NCAA title.

BEST MALE TEAM
Hockey
Tennis
Track & Field
Wrestling

Wrestling. Gophers finished second.

BEST WOMEN’S TEAM COACH
Jessica Allister, softball
Brad Frost, hockey
Kelly Kremer, swimming & diving

Frost led the Gophers to the national title.

BEST MEN’S TEAM COACH
Don Lucia, hockey
Steve Plasencia, track & field/cross country
J Robinson, wrestling

Robinson. He was named the national coach of the year in his sport.

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