NEWPORT, R.I. - Salve Regina University director of athletics Jody Mooradian bestowed dozens of awards to student-athletes and staff on Friday evening, including the department's female and male athletes of the year - senior Amber Cody (Pawling, N.Y.) of field hockey, and junior Blake Wojtala (Trenton, Mich.) of men's ice hockey. The first-ever McAuley Cup (named in honor of the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, Catherine McAuley) went to the team that has "excelled above others in all areas including community, classroom, and in athletics" - Salve Regina men's ice hockey, which became the first Seahawk team to reach a championship final in the NCAA postseason.
Mooradian gathered with the senior student-athletes prior to the ceremony which began with a procession from the members of the Class of 2018 into the Bazarsky Lecture Hall in the O'Hare Academic Building, along with a recording of the Salve Regina University Pep Band - circa 2008 - with "Hail Holy Queen" on a loop. After welcoming remarks, Mooradian bestowed the following awards and recognition:
- Gift to SAAC president, Zan Carver (Old Tappan, N.J.)
- Outstanding Faculty Member - Dr. Michael Brady
- Seahawks in Service -Zan Carver (Old Tappan, N.J.), Kevin Clare (Chicago, Ill.), Ally Esielionis (Shirley, Mass.), Victoria Johnson (East Freetown, Mass.), Jonathan Lynch (Cumberland, R.I.), Peter McNamara (Germantown, Md.), Taylor Parry (Quincy, Mass.), Grayce Rogers ()
- Sister Philemon Banigan Award - Taylor Parry (Quincy, Mass.)
- Seahawk Spirit Award - Samantha Salwa (Ellington, Conn.)
- Distinguished Senior Scholar Athlete (Dr. Christopher Kiernan Award) - Katie Kline, Kevin Brocks (Albany, N.Y.)
The director of athletics then petitioned the master of ceremonies, Ed Habershaw, to present the next award. It was supposed to be the Sportsmanship Award - presented to a male and female student-athlete who has earned the respect of fellow athletes, coaches, and administration for superior athletics and for continually demonstrating those qualities associated with good sportsmanship (i.e. fair play, positive attitude, cooperation). However, Mooradian surprised Habershaw, and countless others, by bestowing him with the first-ever Seahawk Stewardship Award, and re-naming the Sportsmanship honors to Habershaw Stewardship Award with similar qualifications but also including "the job of supervising or taking care of something, such as an organization or property."
- Seahawk Stewardship Award - Ed Habershaw
- Habershaw Stewardship Award - Kristen Hickey (New Hyde Park, N.Y.), Jonathan Lynch (Cumberland, R.I.)
- Class Awards -
- Freshmen - Hannah Grey (Plymouth, Mass.), Anthony Cieszko (Woodcliff Lake, N.J.)
- Sophomores - Annie Donahue (Chelmsford, Mass.), Maddie Villareal (Portsmouth, R.I.), Jack Billings (Oak Lawn, Ill.)
- Juniors - Amanda Riley (Barrington, N.H.), Jordan Elster, Zack Smith (New Canaan, Conn.)
- Seniors - Courtney Bouchard (Middleton, Mass.), James Dawson (Oradell, N.J.), Pat Thompson (Hellertown, Pa.)
- Athlete of the Year - Amber Cody (Pawling, N.Y.), Blake Wojtala (Trenton, Mich.)
- McAuley Cup - 2017-18 Salve Regina University Men's Ice Hockey
A video tribute which usually follows the ceremony has been delayed due to technical difficulties. Please check back here often for an update to the story.