TACOMA, Washington – University of Puget Sound athletics celebrated its 2017-18 year with the annual All-Sports Celebration in Memorial Fieldhouse Tuesday night. Former men's basketball student-athlete Matt Reid '16 was the emcee for the event.
The evening began by celebrating several university staff – and former staff – members. Puget Sound welcomed back Robin Hamilton, who retired in September 2018 after 32 years with the Loggers. She served several roles with Puget Sound, including softball head coach, sports media director, and associate athletics director.
The Loggers also honored long-time athletic trainer / physical therapist Joe Adamchack, who is moving to Europe later this spring. Long-time Tacoma News Tribune sports writer Todd Milles was also in attendance and honored by the Loggers. Lastly, Puget Sound paid homage to university photographer Ross Mulhausen, who is retiring at the end of the school.
Puget Sound also honored its scholar-athletes (min. 3.5 GPA), and four-year letter winners. And of course, there were the special awards….
Tim McDonough Award
The Tim McDonough award is presented to a male and female student-athlete who provide inspiration and leadership through involvement in the community, campus ministries and Social Justice. Logger Club member John and Jackie Wohn and University Chaplain Dave Wright presented this award.
The female recipient of the Tim McDonough Award is lacrosse senior Ella Frazer. She is a four-year letter winner who led her team in scoring this spring. In addition to being a CES Advisor, Trail Editor, and research assistant, this student-athlete is actively involved in Green Dot training, and Frazer is a leader for student-athletes to combat sexual assaults on campus.
The male recipient of the Tim McDonough Award is football freshman Murdock Rutledge. He is the leadership chair of YoungLife, is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and a Sigmi Chi member.
Paul & Helen Perdue Award
The Paul and Helen Perdue Award is given to the male and female student-athletes who embrace the spirit of community service that Paul and Helen displayed through their lives in Tacoma and at the University of Puget Sound. The son-in-law of Paul and Helen Perdue, Jerry Ramsey, presented this award.
The female recipients of the Perdue Award are women's crew teammates, Louisa Cryan and Kayla Hipp. This duo helped to raise more than $11,000 for Childhood Cancer Research through the St. Baldrick's Foundation.
The male recipient of the Perdue Award sets the standard for his team's community service program, and then does much more than that. Football junior Dwight Jackson leads initiatives for the Bryant Montessori Recess Program, Habitat for Humanity, Adopt-A-Family, Special Olympics, School Supplies Drive, and more. Jackson was also nominated for the AFCA Good Works Team.
John Heinrick Award
The next award is the John Heinrick Most Inspirational Athlete Award. This award is given to the male and female student-athletes who display the same leadership and inspiration as legendary Logger coach John Heinrick. Trustee Emeritus Ken McGill presented this award.
This year's first female recipient of the John Heinrick, women's soccer's Tayla MacPherson, had a terrific freshman season, and her future looked promising. However, an injury in the spring of her freshman year not only put her on the sidelines, but even walking became difficult. Now fully recovered, MacPherson is both a vocal and exemplary leader on the pitch finishing the year second in point totals for the team. This past fall, she was named to the All-Northwest Conference First Team and earned All-West Region honors.
The second female recipient of the John Heinrick Award is softball senior Erica Gott. She has not missed a start in her four years with the Loggers. Through those four years, Gott developed the communication skills that kept her team focused and energized. She is a SAAC Officer, and volunteers with Stafford Elementary, Relay for Life, and Habitat for Humanity.
The male recipient of the John Heinrick Award spent three seasons waiting, learning, and working before his number was finally called. Senior quarterback Tanner Diebold delivered in a big way, earning All-Northwest Conference honors and proving to be one of the most dynamic players at his position. He achieved all this while going through the life-changing decision to come out as a gay man.
Dill Howell Award
The Dill Howell Award is awarded to the most improved male and female student-athletes on the court, field, or in the water. University Board of Trustee member Barb Walker presented this award.
The female recipient of the Dill Howell Award is women's tennis senior Tresa Bild. She has been heralded for her leadership qualities through the years. However, in the final season of her collegiate career, Bild was pushed to make significant changes to her play. She willingly accepted this challenge making drastic changes to her game. Those changes paid off as her team finished the season with the program's best record in four years.
This year's first male recipient has tripled his playing time from last year - playing in 31 games, and rightfully so. Baseball junior Nick Ultsch leads the team in home runs, slugging percentage, and RBI.
The second male recipient of the Dill Howell Award, football defensive back Zackary Teats, came to Puget Sound as a highly regarded player. However, an early-career injury delayed this Loggers' ability to showcase his skills on the field. During Teats' recovery time, he became a team leader and greatly improved academically as well. After finally returning to the gridiron, he showed off his skills and led the nation in passes defended per game while earning All-Northwest Conference honors.
Roberta Wilson Award
The Roberta Wilson Award is presented to the female student-athlete who displays the excellence in her sport, excellence in her academics, and an unmatched determination to continue to excel in all aspects of her life. Former professor in Exercise Science, and for whom this is award is named, Robert Wilson presented the honor.
The Roberta Wilson Award winner is a senior rower Lily O'Connor. She walked-on as a freshman, and she hasn't looked back. O'Connor has led her crew to several victories and Northwest Conference honors this year, and she ranks at the top – or at least near the top – of every fitness measure in her program. Oh, she also has a 3.99 GPA in molecular and cellular biology.
Harry Werbisky Award
The Harry Werbisky Award is given to well-rounded male student-athlete who not only excels in athletics and academics, but also shows the determination to continue to improve in all area of his life. Physics professor and Faculty Athletics Associate for golf Dr. Andy Rex presented this award.
The Harry Werbisky Award winner was recently named to the All-Northwest Conference First Team. Baseball team captain and junior Jack Gries is a member of the business leadership program, and he holds a 3.87 GPA for his degree. Between competing and studying, this Logger also holds an internship with Harbor Capital, and he is an active member of the investment.
Robin Hamilton Award
To honor an individual who served the university for more than 30 years as both a record-setting coach, an administrator, and an important mentor to student-athletes, the Robin Hamilton Award was established this year. The award is presented to the male and female student-athletes who embody Robin's core tenet of the importance of strong attitude and effort leading to team achievement. Robin Hamilton returned to campus to present the inaugural award.
The women's recipient of the inaugural Robin Hamilton Award is always smiling. There's a very good chance Jamie Lange is smiling now. But don't let that smile fool you, she is also a fierce competitor. Earlier this year, Lange was named to the All-Northwest Conference First Tea, twice! Once for women's soccer, and once for women's basketball. She also received All-Region honors for both sports.
The male recipient of the Robin Hamilton Award saw less playing time than he did a year ago, and he embraced the new role. Although his playing time dropped significantly for the betterment of the men's basketball team, Jimmy Wohrer's productivity took off. He led the Northwest Conference in scoring, was named to the All-Northwest Conference First Team, and earned All-Region honors.
Richard Ulrich Award
The Richard Ulrich Award is presented to the male and female student-athletes who show outstanding leadership skills and tireless commitment to their teams and Logger Athletics. Dr. Michael Bateman presented this award.
The female recipient of Richard Ulrich Award is a two-time All-Northwest Conference selection. Elizabeth Prewitt is a steady presence for both the women's basketball team and for SAAC. She was just elected as the incoming co-president of SAAC. This past winter, she ranked top 10 in the Northwest Conference for scoring, 3-point percentage, and free-throw percentage.
The male recipient of the Richard Ulrich Award is a senior captain who earned several team awards, ranging from player of the week, to player of the year, to a team character award. Football senior Max Washam's leadership quite literally ranged from Baker Stadium, all the way to China. He helped transform the defense this year leading the team in total tackles on the year and averaged 7.8 tackles per game.
Alice Bond Award
The Alice Bond Award is presented to the Most Outstanding Female Student-Athlete. Alice Bond was the pioneer for women's sports at Puget Sound as the Director and Supervisor for women's sports from 1947 to 1976. Current member of the University's Board of Trustees and former baseball coach Brad Cheney presented the award.
Only a sophomore, the Alice Bond Award winner not only set school records, but conference records as well. And when she set school records, she set out again to break her own records. The drive of sophomore swimmer Kelli Callahan led to four Northwest Conference Student-Athlete of the Week honors, and she was named the Northwest Conference Co-Swimmer of the year. She won Northwest Conference titles in the 200-IM, 400-IM, and 100-breastroke on her way to competing in the NCAA Championships in Indianapolis.
Ben Cheney Award
The Ben Cheney Award is presented to the Most Outstanding Male Student-Athlete. It is named for Lumber company owner Ben Cheney, an outstanding citizen and a great athletic booster not only for the University of Puget Sound, but the entire City of Tacoma. Brad Cheney, son of Ben Cheney, presented the award.
This year's Ben Cheney Award winner was previously honor in the evening. Not only was the leading scorer in the Northwest Conference, but Jimmy Wohrer ranked fourth in all of NCAA D-III for 3-pointers made per game. He shattered Puget Sound's single-season record for 3-pointers in a season, making 104 shots from downtown this past season.
Ron Thomas Team Spirit Award
Named after the university's 13th president, the Ron Thomas Team Spirit Award reflects President Thomas' passion for Logger Athletics. - most recently playing a pivotal role in constructing the Athletics and Aquatics Center. This award is to recognize a Logger Team that embodies the "Logger Up" spirit of support, pride, and positive attitude. Director of Athletics Amy Hackett presented the award.
This year's team spirit award goes to a sport program which has had more than its share of change and adjustment – at no fault of their own. Despite these circumstances, the students remained optimistic and supportive of each other and committed to their sport resulting in improved play. Congratulations to the men's and women's tennis teams!
Women's cross country was honored by achieving the highest team GPA (3.51). Graduating seniors with the highest GPA were also recognized. Baseball's James Dejesus has a 3.96 GPA while completing his degree in biochemistry with minors in economics and mathematics. On the women's side, softball's Jessica Gott has a 3.99 GPA while majoring in psychology with a minor in business, and women's rower Lily O'Conner has a 3.99 GPA while studing cellular and molecular biology.