BYU celebrates annual Y Awards | BYU Cougar Club

BYU celebrates annual Y Awards

(Photo by BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – BYU Athletics celebrated a year of athletic and academic success at the 2017 Y Awards ceremony held Wednesday, March 29, 2017, at the Marriott Center.

Sixteen student-athletes, two coaches, six teams and one volunteer were honored as part of this year’s Y Awards. Among the honorees were women’s soccer All-American Ashley Hatch, named Female Athlete of the Year; as well as football player Jamaal Williams, who was named Male Athlete of the Year.

Women’s golf head coach Carrie Roberts was named Coach of the Year after leading BYU to a first-place finish at the West Coast Conference Championships. BYU track and field assistant coach Diljeet Taylor was named Assistant Coach of the Year.

The 2016 women’s soccer and volleyball teams tied for the Women’s Team of the Year award after finishes in the regional semifinals of the NCAA tournament, while the 2016 men’s volleyball team was named Men’s Team of the Year following a 27-4 season and run to the national championship match of the NCAA tournament. 

Rookie of the Year awards were given to All-American volleyball standout McKenna Miller, while the men’s award went to the 2016 WCC Freshman of the Year Keaton Kringlen.

Y Awards winners were selected by votes from their fellow BYU student-athletes. Each head coach could nominate one athlete from their team for each of the categories. The Cougar Council, a group of athletes comprised of two representatives from every team, narrowed down the candidates prior to the final athlete voting. Award qualifications are based on competition from April 2016 to March 2017.

Below is a complete list of Y Awards winners.

Female Rookie of the Year — McKenna Miller (Women’s Volleyball)

This award is given to the female freshman student athlete who contributes the most in her true freshman or redshirt freshman year.

  • Named an AVCA Third-Team All-American, the AVCA All-Pacific South Region Freshman of the Year and the WCC Freshman of the Year
  • Ended the season with 447 total kills and 1,087 attempts – both were seventh all-time in BYU rally-scoring era history
  • AVCA All-Pacific South Region First Team, All-WCC First Team and All-WCC Freshman Team

Other finalists: Shannon Hortman (Gymnastics), Rose Huang (Golf), Libby Sugg (Softball)

Male Rookie of the Year — Keaton Kringlen (Baseball)

This award is given to the male freshman student athlete who contributes the most in his true freshman or redshirt freshman year.

  • Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American, Collegiate Baseball — hit 12 doubles and had 34 RBI
  • Freshman of Year in the West Coast Conference, starting in right field most of the season
  • Named to the All-WCC Second Team and the All-WCC Freshman Team

Other finalists: TJ Haws (Men’s Basketball), Connor Ross (Men’s Track and Field), Thomas Shoaf (Football)

Comeback Player of the Year — Marielle Mitchell (Gymnastics)

Given to the athlete (male or female) who has overcome incredible odds to succeed as a Cougar Athlete.

  • Endured four knee surgeries; following surgery in October 2015 doctors told her she would compete in gymnastics again
  • Earned a 9.600 on bars in her first competition of the year
  • Named to the NACGC/W Scholastic All-American, MRGC All-Academic Team

Other finalists: Erica Birk-Jarvis (Women’s Cross Country), Tyrell Yardley (Men’s Track and Field)

Ed Stein Outstanding Senior Male Athlete Award — Taysom Hill (Football)

The oldest recognition bestowed upon a BYU male athlete, given to the senior who has most clearly demonstrated high athletic and academic performance and sportsmanship.

  • Finished 2016 with 2,323 passing yards, 603 rushing yards and 20 total touchdowns
  • No. 4 at BYU in total offense (9,744 - only Ty Detmer, Max Hall and John Beck had more)
  • Finished No. 5 in school history in rushing yards (2,815 - the most by any QB at BYU) and No. 11 in passing yards at BYU (6,929)

Other finalists: Kevin Dreesen (Diving), Jake Langlois (Men’s Volleyball)

Lu Wallace Outstanding Senior Female Athlete Award — Whitney Young Howard (Women’s Volleyball)

The oldest recognition bestowed upon a BYU female athlete, given to the senior who has most clearly demonstrated high athletic and academic performance and sportsmanship

  • All-WCC First Team and was named All-Pacific South Region Honorable Mention
  • Received WCC All-Academic First Team accolades
  • Started in every match, collecting 230 kills and 135 blocks while ending her BYU career No. 3 all-time in hitting percentage (.341), block assists (589) total blocks (629) and blocks per set (1.45)

Other finalists: Makenzi Pulsipher (Women’s Basketball), Michele Vasconcelos (Women’s Soccer)

Walk-on of the Year — Lacy Haddock (Women’s Volleyball)

This award is given to one non-scholarship athlete (male or female) at BYU who plays a significant role on his or her team.

  • Played in every match but two as a sophomore and started in 21 matches in 2016
  • Collected at least seven kills in 19 matches and had two double-doubles (including at No. 4 Texas to end the season)
  • Had 229 total kills, 81 digs and 61 blocks on the season

Other finalists: Brittni Hawes (Gymnastics), Daniel Schneemann (Baseball)

Cougar Club Memorial Award — Zach Blackham (Men’s Track and Field)

Established in memory of eight Cougar Club members who lost their lives in an airplane crash at the Point of the Mountain in November of 1965, given to an outstanding junior male or female athlete with high scholarly achievement.

  • Sixth place in the BYU record books in the indoor high jump with a mark of 2.20m (7’2.50”); seventh all-time at BYU in the outdoor high jump with a mark of 2.21m (7’3.00”)
  • Placed seventh overall at the NCAA Division I West Preliminaries in the high jump with a 2.16m (7’1”) mark and 13th at the NCAA Championships with a mark of 2.09m (6’10.25”)
  • Named a finalist for the 2016 Curtis Pugsley Track and Field Athlete of the Year Award

Other finalists: Marissa Appiah (Women’s Track and Field), Kent Fellows (Men’s Swimming)

Leona Holbrook Spirit of Sport Award — Makenna Santiago (Women’s Volleyball)

Presented in memory of Dr. Leona B. Holbrook, given to the senior female athlete whose participation best exemplifies the true spirit of sport in athletics and in life.

  • Played in every set but three as a senior
  • Had at least six digs in 12 matches on the year, including collecting double-digit digs in two matches
  • Collected 169 total digs and 25 service aces – just four aces shy of the team high

Other finalists: Mayci Jones (Women’s Tennis), Erin Merkley (Women’s Track and Field)

Dale McCann Spirit of Sport Award — Kyle Davis (Men’s Basketball)

Presented in memory of Dale R. McCann, given to the senior male athlete whose participation best exemplifies the true spirit of sport in athletics and in life.

  • A team captain on the court and a leader in the classroom; owns a 3.53 GPA in BYU’s nationally ranked accounting program
  • Averaged 8.8 points and 4.0 rebounds while shooting 59 percent from the field and 70 percent from the free-throw line
  • Played through pain the first 10 games of the season despite needing major knee surgery

Other finalists: Rainer Ng (Men’s Swimming), Jackson Walker (Men’s Track and Field)

Female Crowd Pleaser — Cassie Broadhead (Women’s Basketball)

Presented to the female athlete whose enthusiasm and outstanding performance have given extra excitement to the crowd.

  • Named the 2017 WCC Women’s Basketball Player of the Year and named to the 2017 WCC Women’s Basketball First Team
  • Ranked first on the team in scoring with a 17.9 average; second in the WCC
  • Had a team best field goal percentage at .477 (178-373) and best free throw percentage .840 (152-181); ranked second on the team in assists with 4.3 average and had second-most blocks with 26

Other finalists: Taylor Isom (Women’s Soccer), Mary Lake (Women’s Volleyball), Jill van Mierlo (Gymnastics)

Male Crowd Pleaser — Jamaal Williams (Football)

Presented to the male athlete whose enthusiasm and outstanding performance have given extra excitement to the crowd.

  • Finished 2016 ranked No. 5 nationally in rushing yards per game (137.5), Tied for No. 21 in total rushing yards (1,375) and No. 6 in rushing attempts per game (23.4).
  • Collected 286 yards (school record) and 5 touchdowns (tied school record) vs. Toledo.
  • One of only 4 players at BYU with multiple seasons of 1,000 rushing yards, joining Harvey Unga, Curtis Brown and Jamal Willis. 

Other finalists: Ben Patch (Men’s Volleyball), Payton Sorenson (Men’s Swimming), Tatenda Tsumba (Men’s Track and Field)

Male Athlete of the Year — Jamaal Williams (Football)

Given to the male athlete who demonstrates the competitive spirit of desire, dedication and determination, leading him to the top of competition and serving as an inspiration to both teammates and fans.

  • Finished 2016 ranked No. 5 nationally in rushing yards per game (137.5), Tied for No. 21 in total rushing yards (1,375) and No. 6 in rushing attempts per game (23.4)
  • Collected 286 yards (school record) and 5 touchdowns (tied school record) vs. Toledo.
  • One of only 4 players at BYU with multiple seasons of 1,000 rushing yards, joining Harvey Unga, Curtis Brown and Jamal Willis. 

Other finalists: Eric Mika (Men’s Baketball), Ben Patch (Men’s Volleyball), Payton Sorenson (Men’s Swimming), Shaquille Walker (Men’s Track and Field)

Female Athlete of the Year — Ashley Hatch (Women’s Soccer)

Given to the female athlete who demonstrates the competitive spirit of desire, dedication and determination, leading her to the top of competition and serving as an inspiration to both teammates and fans.

  • Led the nation in scoring for 12 weeks, giving up the lead only when she joined the U.S Women’s National Team for two weeks.
  • Finished tied for third nationally with 19 goals and ranked fourth in points per game.
  • Had a hat trick to help BYU beat defending-champ Penn State on Aug. 26 and scored a goal against Oklahoma as the Cougars advanced to the third round of the NCAA tournament

Other finalists: Amy Boswell (Women’s Volleyball), Shea Collinsworth (Women’s Track and Field)

Floyd Johnson Service Award — Emma Richards (Women’s Swimming)

Given to a male or female athlete who makes a positive impact in the community and among his or her teammates.

Other finalists: Matt Foley (Football), Carla Haslam (Women’s Soccer), Kent Fellows (Men’s Swimming)

Kimball Memorial Award — John Pearce (Men’s Tennis)

Given to the BYU athlete with the highest grade point average.

Other Awards

Coach of the Year — Carrie Roberts (Women’s Golf)

Assistant Coach of the Year — Diljeet Taylor (Track and Field)

Men’s Team of the Year — Volleyball

Women’s Team of the Year — Volleyball & Soccer (Tie)

Play of the Year — Nadia Gomes goal vs. Portland

Individual Performance of the Year — Shea Collinsworth’s third place 800m in the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Championships

Team Performance of the Year — Men’s basketball at No. 1 Gonzaga

Men’s Team GPA — Cross Country

Women’s Team GPA — Golf

Volunteer of the Year — Maria Zanandrea