Tony Hanson Receives The Red O'Neill Award
April 23, 2009
CROMWELL, Conn. - GALLERY
The UConn Club held its 56th Annual Awards Dinner on Tuesday night in Cromwell, Conn., as former men's basktball standout Tony Hanson was honored with The Red O'Neill Award and Jerry Franklin of Connecticut Public Television received the Dr. A.J. Papinikou Outstanding Contribution Award.
In addition, a number of current student-athletes were honored as "Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athltes" and "Outstanding Senior Athletes".
Outstanding Senior Scholar Athlete Award Avigdor D. Arad - Men's Soccer Hahotrim, Israel
Dori Arad has been a leader for the UConn men's soccer team, not only on the field, but also in the classroom.
Arad is a four-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star as well as a two-time College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District Team member.
In 2007-08, he was selected as UConn's recipient of the Aeropostale Male Scholar-Athlete Award through the BIG EAST Conference.
A Dean's List member in five of his seven semesters at UConn, Arad has also earned a spot on the Athletic Director's Honor Roll six of his seven semesters as a nutritional science major.
Arad has also given back to the University and the community in many positive ways. Since his initial enrollment at UConn in the fall of 2005, Arad has been actively involved in Hillel - UConn's Jewish community. He has been involved in the Israeli Education and Advocacy group and was a member of the Chabad Student Organization.
Arad has volunteered his time as a Hebrew language tutor and has been a guest speaker numerous times for community and youth groups at the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford, the Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven, Beth David Synagogue in West Hartford, Temple Beth Shalom in Manchester and volunteered to speak at and lead workshops in connection with the celebrations associated with the 60th birthday of Israel in the summer of 2008.
Arad was recognized as one of the "Top Movers and Shakers" of 2007 by the Connecticut Jewish Ledger Newspaper.
Arad served as team captain for the Huskies as a senior and was the 2007 BIG EAST Tournament Offensive MVP and an all-tournament pick.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Adrian A. Astiz - Men's Swimming Rockville, MD
Adrian Astiz is one of the top swimmers to ever come through the UConn program. He was a U.S. Senior National Qualifier, a BIG EAST Conference Championship finalist and a U.S. Open and U.S. Short Course National Championship qualifier as a Husky.
During much of his senior campaign, he was among the top 10 performers nationally in the 200-yard butterfly. Astiz holds the school record in the 200-yard butterfly and top 10 times in the 100-yard butterfly and the 500-yard freestyle.
He posted a NCAA "B" cut time in the 200-yard butterfly during his career. He has been a peer leader of the Student Study Group through the Counseling Program for Intercollegiate Athletes and was very instrumental in the establishment of that program. A native of Rockville, Md.,
Astiz is a biology major and plans on attending medical school.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Katie M. DeVinney - Women's Swimming Avondale, AZ
Katie DeVinney is described as a "leader on a team of leaders" by the coaching staff of the Husky women's swimming and diving team. She wrapped up her UConn career as the school-record holder in the 200-yard butterfly and has school all-time, top 10 times in the 100-yard butterfly and the 500-yard freestyle.
She has been a BIG EAST Conference finalist during her career as well as a finalist at the U.S. Open and a qualifier at the U.S. Senior National Championships. DeVinney was hampered by chronic knee injuries during her career at UConn and had surgery on them following her junior year to be able to train free in her senior year.
Her dedication to rehabilitation allowed the senior captain to have the best times of her collegiate career as a senior and quality for the conference finals.
DeVinney is an elementary education major and will return to UConn next fall to begin work on her master's degree. A native of Avondale, Ariz., she serves as study group leader at the Counseling Program for Intercollegiate Athletes.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Megan M. Frey - Volleyball Chaska, MN
Megan Frey played in 243 sets over her four-year career on the UConn volleyball team. Frey helped guide the 2008 Huskies to a 21-11 record and their third-consecutive BIG EAST Tournament appearance. She was among the team leaders in kills (139), digs (182) and blocks with 93.
Frey is a three-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star and has been on the Director of Athletics Honor Roll every semester of her collegiate career. She was named to the Dean's List in the fall of 2005 and 2007.
Frey has already accepted a position with ING following graduation and will be an employee benefits sales representative. She is an international trade major.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Kristalynn M. Kempton - Women's Swimming Glenn Head, NY
Kristalynn Kempton battled back injuries her entire career and at the beginning of her junior year, she was told to consider concluding her athletic career. Instead, she continued with her sport despite the back pain. Kempton continued with her senior year and enjoyed a successful season. Kempton earned a spot at the BIG EAST Championship in the 200-yard breaststroke and won the consolation final with a time of 2:17.17.
She also finished in the top eight at the BIG EAST in the 100-yard breaststroke. Her time in the 200-yard breaststroke was just off an NCAA Championship "B" cut time. Kempton is also an accomplished musician and performed the National Anthem at the last two BIG EAST Championships.
A native of Glenn Head, N.Y., Kempton is a molecular and cell biology major with a minor in English. She hopes to attend medical school next year.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Cassandra R. Kerns - Women's Basketball Valparaiso, IN
A top academic performer during her four seasons in Storrs, Cassie Kerns provided the UConn women's basketball team with a top-notch effort both on and off the court during her collegiate career.
An established artist with a very bright future, Kerns held down a reserve role in the post during her playing career while seeing action in 90 games and registering 68 points and 48 rebounds over those appearances.
During her career, the Huskies won three BIG EAST regular season and three BIG EAST Tournament titles along with four NCAA Regional berths, two NCAA Final Fours and the 2009 NCAA national championship, which saw the Huskies post the third perfect season in the program's history at 39-0.
The native of Valparaiso, Ind., Kerns is a three-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star while majoring in art.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Jennifer A. Kleinhans - Field Hockey Mannheim, Germany
One of the top defensive players in UConn and BIG EAST field hockey history, Jennifer Kleinhans was also a force for the Huskies in the classroom where she excelled while majoring in biomedical engineering. She was named as the winner of the 2008-09 BIG EAST Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Kleinhans will receive a $4,000 scholarship, which may be applied to graduate or professional studies.
Kleinhans is also a recipient of the prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship.
On the field, Kleinhans was a three-time winner of the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year Award (2006-08) - the first player on UConn history to earn the award three times in a career. She is a three-time National Field Hockey Coaches Association All-America selection and also was named to the All-BIG EAST First Team four times. Kleinhans led Connecticut to three BIG EAST tournament championships (2005, 2006, 2007), three BIG EAST regular-season titles (2005, 2007, 2008) and four NCAA tournament appearances, including back-to-back appearances in the national semifinals in her sophomore and junior seasons. She finished her career as Connecticut's all-time assists leader (24).
A native of Mannheim, Germany, she is a member of the Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society and is a founding member of the Alpha Eta Mu Beta biomedical engineering honor society chapter at Connecticut.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Joseph P. Michaels - Men's Tennis Rochester Hills, MI
A three-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star and 2008-09 team captain, Joey Michaels has been a significant on and off-the-court leader to the Huskies. Michaels has established himself as such with his intelligent play and hard-working attitude.
The marketing major volunteers frequently as part of the "Reading Millionaires" program at Verplanck Elementary School in Manchester, Conn., as well as a Cornerstone Schools Founding Scholarship Partner in Detroit, Mich.
A business administration-marketing major, Michaels was named a 2006 Babbidge Scholar award recipient and the 2007 New England Scholar at UConn. Michaels is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma International Honor Society and plans to attend the University of Michigan Law School in the fall.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Katherine B. Seabaugh - Volleyball St. Louis, MO
Kate Seabaugh was a three-year hitter for the UConn volleyball team and was second on the team last fall with 175 digs while also contributing 66 assists and 55 kills. She finished her career with 628 kills and 628 digs.
Seabaugh will continue her education as a graduate student at Cornell after completing her bachelor's of business administration with a concentration in finance in three years. She won the Undergraduate Finance Student Scholar award, given to one student each year. She was on the Director of Athletics Honor Roll every semester of her three-year collegiate career and earned a spot on the Dean's List four times.
The St. Louis, Mo. native is a three-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Sean M. Smith - Men's Track And Field Scotch Plains, NJ
A four-year member of the men's track and field team, Sean Smith has also been a regular member of the Director of Athletics Honor Roll in all of his semesters at the university. Smith, who originally joined the team as a walk-on, earned All-BIG EAST Conference honors for his third-place performance in the indoor heptathlon at the 2009 league championship.
Over the last four years, Smith has scored in every BIG EAST Championship for the Huskies helping them to BIG EAST titles during the 2006, 2008 and 2009 indoor seasons. Smith has made the Dean's List in the falls of 2006, 2007, and 2008.
A native of Scotch Plains, N.J., and a BIG EAST Academic All Star, Smith will be graduating in May with a degree in accounting.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Brittany L. Tegeler - Women's Soccer Baldwin, MD
A standout player for the women's soccer team on the field, Brittany Tegeler also excelled in the classroom during her time at UConn. Tegeler has been a member of the Dean's List four times and had a perfect 4.0 grade point average during the spring semester of 2008.
Tegeler has been on the Director of Athletics Honor Roll in each of her semesters at UConn and recently received the Neag School of Education Award for the top student in the coaching and administration major.
A captain for the women's soccer team this fall, Tegeler took part in all 22 games, playing 1,150 minutes on the field. Tegeler scored the second-most goals on the team with five and tallied the second-most points on the team (10). In her career, Tegeler totaled 11 assists and 19 goals, including six game winners. Her performance on and off the field helped her to be chosen as one of 30 senior women's soccer players in the nation named as a nominee for the Lowe's Senior CLASS award. A native of Baldwin, Md., Tegeler is a three-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star.
She will graduate in May with a degree in coaching and administration and currently is interning with the Washington Freedom of the Women's Professional Soccer league.
Outstanding Senior Scholar-Athlete Kaitlin G. Vaughan - Women's Track And Field/Cross Country Bethel Park, PA
Kaitlin Vaughan, the Huskies' captain for the cross country program over the past two seasons, has been leading her team both athletically and academically her entire career at UConn.
Vaughan is a pre-med and molecular cell biology major with a chemistry minor. In seven semesters at UConn, the senior student-athlete has received all A's with just one A- as she is a two-time Babbidge Scholar, earning consecutive 4.0's in a calendar year. A mentor to student-athletes studying pre-medicine, she has already been accepted to the University of West Virginia and Cincinnati medical schools.
She was the recipient of the Summer Undergrad Research Fund (SURF) as well as the Life Sciences Research Grant and will participate in the Frontiers Poster Exhibit for Research in April 2009. Vaughan was one of four UConn student-athletes nominated to the annual NCAA Development Conference in 2008 and will be a participant in the Biology Undergraduate Research Colloquium on May 1, 2009.
A native of Bethel Park, Pa., Vaughan has led the UConn cross country team the last four seasons and has also been a key factor in distance events during the women's track and field seasons, both indoor and outdoor. Vaughan consistently ran as the cross country team's number three runner and was an NCAA qualifier and scorer at the NCAA Regionals and BIG EAST Championship.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Jeff Adrien -- Men's Basketball Brookline, Mass.
Jeff Adrien will be remembered in UConn basketball history as one of its most accomplished performers. He is the only player in UConn history to record 1,600 career points and 1,100 career rebounds and finished his Husky career with 47 double-doubles.
He was a three-time All-BIG EAST Conference selection, becoming only the fourth player in Connecticut history to earn league honors three times in his career. Adrien finished his career in style, leading the Huskies to a berth in the 2009 NCAA Final Four. He started all 36 games in 2008-09 and averaged 13.6 points and 9.9 rebounds on the year. He recorded a double-double in the NCAA Elite Eight win over Missouri, scoring 12 points, grabbing ten rebounds and also blocking three shots to help the Huskies reach the Final Four.
The list of accolades for Adrien is numerous. In 2008-09, he was named All-BIG EAST Third Team, USBWA First Team All-District and NABC Second Team All-District. As a junior in 2007-08, Jeff was a First Team All-BIG EAST, All-USBWA and All-NABC selection. As a sophomore in 2006-07, Adrien also earned recognition from the BIG EAST, USBWA and NABC. His career total of 1,603 career points ranks him 12th in the UConn record book and his 1,126 career rebounds are No. 3 all-time at Connecticut.
He is one of only five players in school history to total 1,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds. He is a liberal arts major at UConn.
Oustanding Senior Athlete Lauren M. Aird - Field Hockey Harare, Zimbabwe
Lauren Aird closed out her UConn field hockey career as one of the top offensive players in the history of the program. Her quick-strike ability on the offensive end made her a primary focus of opposing defenses and one of the biggest weapons in the Huskies' attack.
Aird was named a 2009 NFHCA/Longsmith All-America First Team choice for the first time in her career following her senior campaign and has been honored as a first team All-BIG EAST member in each of her final three collegiate seasons. Aird closed out her career by leading the Huskies in goals (20) and points (47).
The senior finished her career as the program's third all-time leading goal scorer with 69. UConn enjoyed a great deal of success during her career as the Huskies won three BIG EAST tournament championships (2005, 2006, 2007), three BIG EAST regular-season titles (2005, 2007, 2008) and four NCAA tournament appearances, including back-to-back appearances in the national semifinals in her sophomore and junior seasons.
A native of Harare, Zimbabwe, Aird is a communications science major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete William K. Beatty - Football York, PA
Will Beatty was a consistent presence for the UConn football team at left tackle for the past four years as he played in 39 games, with 36 starts, all at that position.
As a senior for the Huskies in 2008, he earned first team All-BIG EAST honors and shared the team's 2008 Joseph M. Giannelli Unsung Hero Award. Beatty was a key part of the Husky offensive line that allowed running back Donald Brown to lead the country in rushing. The Huskies were ranked 20th in the country in rushing yards per game and second in the BIG EAST at 204.58 yards per game.
Beatty earned a game ball, along with his fellow offensive linemen, in UConn's win over Virginia on Sept. 13. Following his senior season, Beatty played in the Senior Bowl and participated in the NFL Combine. He played in two bowl games during his UConn career and helped lead the Huskies to the 2007 BIG EAST Championship.
A native of York, Pa., Beatty is a human development and family studies major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Cody D. Brown - Football Coral Springs, FL
Cody Brown appeared in 42 games during his Husky career and had 33 starts at defensive end. He started all 13 games for UConn as a senior and was named the team's Defensive Most Valuable Player. Following his senior year, he played in the Senior Bowl and attended the NFL Combine.
Brown was a unanimous First Team All-BIG EAST selection as a senior and was sixth on the team in tackles with 56 and led the team with 11 sacks for a loss of 62 yards and 16.5 tackles for a loss of 72 yards. He had six tackles including a sack in the 2009 International Bowl win over Buffalo and, for the 2008 season, was first in the BIG EAST in sacks and ninth in the nation.
Brown was the first true freshman to start on UConn's offensive or defensive line since the program was elevated to the Football Bowl Subdivision. He played in two bowl games during his UConn career and helped lead the Huskies to the 2007 BIG EAST Championship.
A native of Coral Springs, Fla., Brown is a sociology major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Donald Brown - Football Atlantic Highlands, NJ
The 2008 football season saw running back Donald Brown became the first UConn player to earn First Team All-American since the program was elevated to the Football Bowl Subdivision.
He was a First Team All-America selection from the Sporting News and a Second Team pick of the Walter Camp Football Foundation and the Associated Press. Brown was named the 2008 BIG EAST Conference Offensive Player of the Year and a unanimous First Team All-Conference pick. He also earned 2008 ECAC University Division Player of the Year. He was also an All-BIG EAST pick as a freshman in 2006.
Brown attended the NFL Combine following a senior year that saw him lead the country in rushing at 160.2 yards per game and was also 12th in all-purpose yardage and 21st in scoring. He holds the UConn career records with 3,800 rushing yards and 698 rushing attempts while his 33 rushing touchdowns is second. In 2008, his 2,083 rushing yards was a school single-season record as was his 367 carries while his 18 rushing TDs was second. Brown was named the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week for his performance against Virginia on Sept. 13 with 20 carries for 206 yards and three TDs.
He was a semifinalist for the Doak Walker Award, the Walter Camp Football Foundation Player of the Year and the Maxwell Award. Brown rushed for 100 yards or more in 11 of 13 games this year and had 200 yards in three games, including 264 in the International Bowl victory.
A native of Atlantic Highlands, N.J., Brown was an exercise science major at UConn.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Darius J. Butler - Football Fort Lauderdale, FL
Darius Butler was a two-year team captain for the UConn football team and started all of his 45 career games played at cornerback.
As a senior in 2008, he was a First Team All-BIG EAST Conference selection and then played in the Senior Bowl and took part in the NFL Combine. Butler had 28 tackles on the 2008 season with three for a loss and four break-ups, despite missing the final two regular season games with injury.
He came back to the lineup to finish his career in the 2009 International Bowl. Butler also saw time at wide receiver for UConn this year with nine receptions for 123 yards and a touchdown. He earned the offensive game ball in the win over Louisville on Sept. 26 as he had three receptions for 40 yards and the first TD reception of his career. He played in two bowl games during his UConn career and helped lead the Huskies to the 2007 BIG EAST Championship.
A native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Butler graduated from UConn in December with a degree in sociology.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Andrew L. Dubs - Men's Track and Field Holland, PA
Andrew Dubs came into his senior track season with three BIG EAST shot put titles under his belt and continues to add to his collection. Dubs, who was named captain of the men's track and field squad for the 2009 season, earned his fourth BIG EAST shot put title at the 2009 indoor championship in February.
Dubs has recorded points in each of the BIG EAST meets that he has competed in during his career at UConn. He has currently won four-straight BIG EAST shot put titles and swept the New England Championship shot put competition last season as a redshirt junior. He has helped to lead his team to three BIG EAST Indoor Championships (2006, 2008, 2009) in his time at the university as well as four-straight New England Championship titles.
Dubs is also a leader off of the field as he is the current president of the UConn Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. A native of Holland, Pa., Dubs will graduate in May with a degree in coaching and administration.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Sean R. Erickson - Men's Hockey Eden Prairie, MN
A three-time captain for the UConn men's hockey squad, Sean Erickson defines leadership. His ability to help others has put him in the UConn record books for career assists and career points. Erickson sits in third place among UConn Division I hockey players on the career assists list with 60 and in ninth place on the career points list with 74. He finished his senior year with five goals and 13 assists, good for sixth on the team.
His point total was 10th in Atlantic Hockey among scoring defenseman. In his freshman season at UConn, Erickson was named to the AHA All-Rookie team after recording 21 points on five goals and 16 assists. He made his way to the AHA Third Team his sophomore year and was named to the AHA Second Team in his final season with the Huskies. His performance on and off of the ice helped him to garner a Lowe's Senior CLASS award nomination this year. Erickson was chosen as one of 30 senior hockey players across the country for the prestigious award.
A native of Eden Prairie, Minn., Erickson will graduate in May with a degree in sociology.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Jessica M. Foreman - Women's Track and Field Wayland, MA
Jessica Foreman led by example in her career with the UConn women's track and field team as she was a dominate presence for her team in championship meets. Foreman is an indoor track and field NCAA qualifier in the 60-meter dash and the 100-meter dash. This season, Foreman has led the Huskies to a ranking of 13th in the country, the best ranking in program history.
She is a four-time BIG EAST Conference champion with titles in the 60-meter and 100-meter dashes. Foreman is the school record holder in the indoor 55-meter dash and is second in the outdoor 60-meter. Foreman is the New England record holder in the 55-meter dash and also won a New England Championship in that event.
A native of Wayland, Mass., Foreman came to UConn as a state champion in the 100-meter dash in both 2004 and 2005 and was a star athlete in track, soccer and basketball at Wayland High School. At UConn, she is a communication science major.
Oustanding Senior Athlete Ellis D. Gaulden - Men's Track And Field Tallahassee, FL
A five-year member of the UConn men's track and field squad, Ellis Gaulden has helped to bring home three indoor BIG EAST Championship titles in 2006, 2008 and 2009. Gaulden started his career off with an appearance in the NCAA East Regional during his freshman outdoor season, high jumping his way to an 11th-place finish.
He continued to improve and during the indoor season of his sophomore year he won his first BIG EAST individual title in the high jump. Though he didn't compete during his junior year, Gaulden came out during his senior season ready to perform. He took home his second BIG EAST high jump title and placed sixth in the long jump, also earning BIG EAST Field Performer of the Year honors.
Also a member of the International Bowl Champion UConn football team, Gaulden's senior season was the best of his career. The wide-out caught 17 passes for 214 yards including a career-long reception of 43 yards against South Florida.
A native of Tallahassee, Fla., Gaulden will graduate in May with a degree in human development and family studies.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Monique R. Hodges - Women's Track And Field Wethersfield, CT
Monique Hodges has been an integral part of the success of the UConn women's track and field team over the past few seasons. Hodges is a captain of the 2008-09 Huskies and has qualified for NCAA Regional competition in the 100-meter dash as well as the 4x100 meter relay over her career. She was a member of the 4x100 meter relay championship team which won the ECAC Championship and the Penn Relays with a time of 45.03 in 2008 in outdoor competition.
Hodges has posted qualifying marks in the 60-meter and 100-meter dash for both indoor and outdoor competition for the BIG EAST, ECAC and New England Championships.
A native of Wethersfield, Conn., Hodges majors in marketing at UConn.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Stephanie L. Labbe - Women's Soccer Stony Plain, ALB
Stephanie Labbe concluded a successful soccer career in 2008 as she was named the 2008 BIG EAST Goalkeeper of the Year and led the Huskies to their first appearance in a BIG EAST tournament final since 2005.
She joined the team after missing the first game of the year because of her participation in the 2008 Summer Olympics with the Canadian National Team. She came up big for the Huskies playing every single minute in goal for UConn the rest of the way. Labbe was named to the BIG EAST First Team for the first time in her career in 2008. She was also named All-New England First Team and garnered All-Northeast Region Honors.
A native of Stony Plain, Alberta, Labbe is currently playing professional soccer in Sweden for Pitea IF. She was an early childhood and development major at UConn.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Lindsey R. Leck - Field Hockey Clarksburg, NJ
One of the most consistent contributors to the UConn field hockey team over the past four seasons, Lindsey Leck was a 2008 All-BIG EAST First Team choice. After earning second-team All-Conference honors as a junior, Leck posted eight goals, nine assists and 25 points during her senior campaign while leading the Huskies on the wing and in the midfield. She closed out her career with 28 goals, 24 assists and 80 points while playing in 94 career games and making 85 starts. Leck was also a 2007 and 2008 All-Mideast Region honoree and was a two-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star selection.
UConn enjoyed a great deal of success during her career as the Huskies won three BIG EAST tournament championships (2005, 2006, 2007), three BIG EAST regular-season titles (2005, 2007, 2008) and four NCAA tournament appearances, including back-to-back appearances in the national semifinals in her sophomore and junior seasons.
A native of Clarksburg, N.J., Leck is a sociology major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Liza R. Marianni - Women's Swimming And Diving Cherry Hill, NJ
Liza Marianni has been an exceptional performer for the UConn women's swimming and diving team for the past four seasons.
A diver, Marianni has been a finalist at the BIG EAST Championship in all four of her years as a Husky. She was a three-time BIG EAST runner-up with second place finishes in the one-meter and three-meter dives in 2007 and the three-meters again this year. Marianni qualified for the NCAA Zone Championships for four years and holds the school and Wolff-Zackin Natatorium records in the three-meter dive. A team captain this year, she won several invitational titles during her UConn career, including the Terrapin Cup in Maryland and the Notre Dame Invitational.
he is the all-time leading point scorer in women's diving in UConn history. A native of Cherry Hill, N.J., she is a allied health sciences major at UConn.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Amanda J. Martin - Women's Track and Field Rowley, MA
Amanda Martin is a two-time captain of the UConn women's track and field team, but has been a leader on the team for her entire career at UConn. Martin's specialty is the javelin and she was the 2007 BIG EAST outdoor champion in that event and was the runner-up in 2008. She was also the 2008 ECAC outdoor champion in the javelin and qualified for the NCAA Regionals in the javelin last spring.
She is the school record holder in the javelin throw with a mark of 160 feet, three inches. During her time competing in indoor competition, Martin has been a BIG EAST, New England and ECAC Championship qualifier in the shot put.
A native of Rowley, Mass., Martin is a nutrition major at Connecticut and has been a championship qualifier in all her seasons with the program. She has picked up a championship title in a major event in the javelin in two her of three previous seasons.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Renee D. Montgomery - Women's Basketball St. Albans, WV
The unquestioned floor leader of the national champion UConn women's basketball team, Renee Montgomery established herself among the top guards in UConn women's basketball history. Montgomery closed out her career as the only player in UConn history to rank among the program's top-10 leaders in scoring, assists, steals and three-pointers and was honored as the 2009 winner of the Nancy Lieberman Award, which recognizes the nation's top point guard.
She also was selected as the recipient of the 2009 Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award, which goes to the nation's top player that stands 5-7 or less. Montgomery was named as a first team All-BIG EAST choice in each of her final three seasons and was a State Farm/WBCA All-America following both her junior and senior campaigns. During her tenure at Connecticut, she started a program-record 150 games which included a UConn-record 140 consecutive starts - which also ranked as the longest such streak nationally among active players.
Montgomery was the first three-time captain under head coach Geno Auriemma and guided the Huskies to an overall record of 139-11, including three BIG EAST regular season and three BIG EAST Tournament titles along with four NCAA Regional berths, two NCAA Final Fours and the 2009 NCAA national championship, which saw the Huskies post the third perfect season in the program's history at 39-0.
A native of St. Albans, W.Va., she is a communications major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Jillian Ortega - Softball Aberdeen, NJ
One of the most consistent players in UConn softball history, Jillian Ortega has played in every game of her career at the university. Her ability at the plate and her defense in the field have earned her postseason honors in each of her years as a Husky.
Ortega has received all-BIG EAST honors every year, being named to the Second Team in her rookie season and the First Team during her sophomore and junior campaigns. Ortega also earned All-Northeast Region First Team honors in 2007 and was named an All-America Scholar-Athlete last year.
Ortega has already written herself into the UConn record books. Entering this season, she stood third on the career doubles list with 34, sixth in career batting average (.335) and eighth on the career RBI list knocking in 80 runs over the course of three seasons, the most of any current Husky. A native of Aberdeen, N.J.,
Ortega will graduate in May with a degree in coaching and administration.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Anthony J. Price - Men's Basketball Amityville, NY
The story of A.J. Price is a classic tale of dealing with adversity, on multiple occasions, yet working hard to achieve success, both individually and as a team. Price came to Connecticut as a highly-regarded and recruited star, but his first battle at UConn was not on the court, it was a battle for his life as he overcame a threatening illness. He finally suited up for the Huskies in 2006-07, but struggled to regain his form and the team struggled as well, missing the postseason.
The 2007-08 season saw Price and the Huskies return to elite status. Price earned Second Team All-American honors and UConn returned to the national rankings and the NCAA Tournament. Unfortunately, Price suffered a torn ACL in the opening minutes of the 2008 NCAA Tournament, ending a comeback year on a sour note.
The 2008-09 campaign began as a struggle for Price, but the team would soon hit their stride. From an early season tournament win at the Paradise Jam, to a pair of No. 1 national rankings during the year, to a career-high 36 points in a road win at Marquette, the year was a return to glory for both Price and the Huskies. He saved his best for March. In the NCAA Tournament, Price was unstoppable. He dominated early round play, highlighted by 27 points in a rout of Texas A&M. In the West Regional, Price would not let the Huskies be denied.
He led the squad to wins over Purdue and Missouri and was named the West Regional Most Outstanding Player as UConn advanced to the Final Four. He finished his career with 1,284 career points, No. 25 all-time at UConn and his 469 career assists are ninth all-time. He led the Huskies in scoring in 2008-09 at 14.7 points per game and was named a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation's top point guard. He was also a Second Team All-BIG EAST pick, First Team All-USBWA selection and was named to the BIG EAST All-Tournament team.
Price is a liberal arts major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Lisa Shelps - Women's Swimming Quakertown, PA
Lisa Shelps leaves the UConn women's swimming program as the school-record holder in seven individual events and two relays. She holds the school marks in the 50-yard, 100-yard and 200-yard freestyle, the 100-yard and 200-yard backstroke and the 200-yard and 400-yard individual medley.
In an era of specialization in swimming, Shelps has shown great range with success in events ranging from sprints to endurance races. She has posted multiple NCAA "B" cuts as a Husky and was an All-BIG EAST performer. Shelps qualified for the U.S. Open, U.S. Short Course National Championship and U.S. Senior National Championship. She was a finalist at the U.S. Open.
A native of Quakertown, Pa., Shelps is a psychology major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Micah L. Truax - Softball South Glens Falls, NY
Already all over the UConn softball record books, Micah Truax entered her senior season as one of the most decorated athletes in the history of the program. A two-time All-American, Truax is the third Husky to earn All-America status twice during her career and the second to do so in back-to-back seasons. Truax was named BIG EAST Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons garnering the honor in 2007 and 2008. With the Player of the Year honor, Truax was also named to the BIG EAST Conference First team twice.
The senior centerfielder has also been named to the All-Northeast second team twice during her career in 2007 and 2008. Entering her final season, Truax was UConn's all-time homerun leader with 25 over three seasons. She also stands ninth on the career batting average list (.331), ninth in total bases (247), fourth in slugging (.556), eighth in runs(102) and seventh in the stolen bases (26).
A native of South Glens Falls, N.Y., Truax will graduate in May with a degree in human development and family studies.
Outstanding Senior Athlete Meghan E. Wheeler - Field Hockey Canton, MA
Meghan Wheeler was a leader for the highly-successful UConn field hockey program both on and off the field. Over her career, Wheeler started 91 of her 94 career games while tallying five goals, 16 assists and 26 points. She was also a member of the 2008 All-BIG EAST Second Team and was a 2007 NFHCA/Longsmith First Team All-America.
Wheeler provided a stabilizing force in the midfield that was crucial to the UConn offensive attack. Her ability to control the midfield area and set up her teammates on the attack has been a consistent function of UConn's consistent success over the past four seasons that has seen the Huskies advance to four consecutive NCAA Tournaments, with three BIG EAST Tournament titles, two BIG EAST regular season crowns and earn a pair of NCAA national semifinal berths.
A native of Canton, Mass., Wheeler is a sociology major.
Outstanding Senior Athlete O'Brian N. White - Men's Soccer Scarborough, ONT
O'Brian White, a two-time All-American at UConn, wrapped up his stellar four-year career with the Huskies after being named the 2007 Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy winner, a 2008 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award finalist and a 2008 Hermann Trophy finalist.
He was also a two-time BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year selection as he recorded career marks of 46 goals and 23 assists for 115 points. White earned BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year honors for the second-straight year in 2008. It was the ninth time a Connecticut player garnered the offensive accolades.
The senior led the team in points with 14 and goals with six, while also adding two assists in 14 games in his senior season. He was tied for fourth in conference points per game (1.00), tied for fourth in goals per game (0.43) and tied for sixth in goals (6). White was also one of two unanimous selections to the All-BIG EAST First Team in 2008 and continued his dominance on the field as he was named to the first team three times (2006, 2007 and 2008) and was an All-BIG EAST Second Team honoree as a freshman (2005).
He is a sociology major at UConn.