April 3 was the scheduled date for the annual Varsity Awards banquet where uOttawa's varsity programs and varsity club teams gather annually to celebrate the season and recognize the outstanding accomplishments of teams and individuals. This season, these awards will be presented online only as the University has taken measures to follow municipal, provincial, and federal guidelines surrounding the spread of COVID-19.
This does not diminish the accomplishments of our student-athletes, and reminds us to celebrate of our shared love of sport despite our distance from each other.
Of note, the graduating student-athlete class and Gee-Gees Lifetime Award winners are normally celebrated at the varsity banquet. The Class of 2020 may not be able to gather together, but the thoughts of all Gee-Gees are with all of you as you end your U SPORTS careers and work to finish your studies. Be proud of all that you have achieved.
The Gee-Gees are happy to introduce the top four varsity nominees for the major awards for 2019-2020, each in alphabetical order within their categories. Winners will be announced on April 17, in addition to team MVPs, Student Therapist of the Year, and one career achievement award recipient.
TOP 8 NOMINEES FOR ATHLETES OF THE YEAR:
Davide Casarin (swimming) - set a U SPORTS record in the 1500 freestyle, one of two events he won gold medals in at this year's national championships. In total, Casarin stepped onto the national podium five times this year with two individual silvers and a relay bronze. He was named the RSEQ Male Swimmer of the Year after winning five golds and a silver at the conference level.
Réshaan Davis (football) - was named a First Team All-Canadian at defensive end after ranking second in OUA with 11.5 tackles per loss. He was also fourth in OUA with seven sacks in the regular season, and recorded one forced fumble which was one of his several game-changing plays this season.
Kevin Domingue (hockey) - led the Gee-Gees with 18 goals and 34 points this season, earning a place on the OUA First All-Star team. He ranked first in the OUA East in both goals and points and led the OUA in playoff goals with 8 in 9 games, helping the team to an OUA silver medal.
Calvin Epistola (basketball) – became the fourth member of the 400-points in a season club by leading Ottawa with 19.0 points per game this season for a total of 418. He also ranked third in OUA in steals, while contributing 3.9 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game. He was named a First Team All-Canadian.
Madison Clarke (track and field) – captured a U SPORTS silver medal in the 600m and finished fourth in the 1000m at nationals. She set a team record in the 600m, a personal best in the 1000m and also won OUA silver medals in both events. She was ranked nationally in five events during the season.
Michaela Haley (rugby) – was named a Second Team All-Canadian and First Team RSEQ All-Star after leading the RSEQ in trys with 11 in the regular season. Started all eleven games for Ottawa at three different positions and was a dominant attacking threat.
Brooklynn McAlear-Fanus (basketball) – was named a Second Team All-Canadian after leading the nation in assists with 6.8 per game. She led the Gee-Gees in scoring (15.8 points per game) and steals, making her an incredible all-around player this season.
Mikayla Morton (soccer) – was named a First Team All-Canadian and OUA East Most Valuable Player after leading the nation in scoring with 17 goals in 14 games. Her 17 regular season goals is a Gee-Gees record and she led the OUA in total points with 18. She added another three goals in the OUA playoffs and two at the FISU World Cup.
TOP 8 NOMINEES FOR PRESIDENT'S AWARDS:
Brendan Jacome (hockey) – a fourth-year Finance student, Jacome was third on the Gee-Gees in scoring this season with 22 points. A three-time Academic All-Canadian, Jacome holds a GPA of 8.5 and was recognized with the OUA East Randy Gregg Award this season.
Judson Nickerson (swimming) – an Academic All-Canadian in Political Science, Nickerson won an RSEQ bronze medal in the 200m butterfly. The second-year Gee-Gee then finished seventh nationally in the event and contributed to a fifth-place finish in the 4x100 medley relay at nationals.
Françis Perron (football) – an Academic All-Canadian in Mechanical Engineering, Perron is a starting defensive lineman for the Gee-Gees. With a GPA of 9.0, the third-year was selected to the 2020 East-West game and scored 1 touchdown on a fumble recovery this season.
James Shaw (rugby) – a fourth-year Pyscholgy student with a GPA of 9.25, Shaw is the starting scrum half for uOttawa. The Academic All-Canadian is also a member of the team's leadership group.
Katherine Bearne (soccer) – a fifth-year midfielder and Master's student in Physics, Bearne was named an OUA All-Star for the fifth time this year and an All-Canadian for the third time in her career. She won the OUA East Community Service Award this year.
Brigitte Lefevbre-Okankwu (basketball) – maintaining an academic average of 9.60 in her third year of Biomedical Sciences, Lefevbre-Okankwu led the Gee-Gees in rebounding (7.2 per game) and was second in scoring (13.2 points per game) this season.
Meagan McGaughey (hockey) – a fourth-year Health Sciences student with a GPA of 8.83, McGaughey had career highs in points (12), assists (6), and goals (6) this year and is an active forechecker and penalty killer.
Tori Wyman (rugby) – a fifth-year Human Kinetics student, Wyman has maintained a GPA of 9.67 and is a member of the team Leadership Group. She started at number five for Ottawa this season, scoring one regular season try.
TOP 8 NOMINEES FOR ROOKIES OF THE YEAR:
Jamie Armstrong (rugby) – An RSEQ First Team All-Star, Armstrong scored two tries for Ottawa to co-lead the team. His performance against Sherbrooke was crucial to the team clinching a playoff spot this season. He has also attended a U20 National Team Camp.
Louis Bertrand (swimming) – A member of the U SPORTS bronze medal-winning 4x200 freestyle relay team, Bertrand also won two RSEQ medals on relay squads. Individually, he placed seventh at U SPORTS in the 400m freestyle and won the B final to place ninth in the 200m free.
Dominic Cormier (hockey) – Cormier's 17 assists was second on Ottawa this season and he was tied for first among OUA rookie defencemen in total points with 20. He was named to the OUA All-Rookie Team.
Kevin Victome (football) – named to the OUA All-Rookie Team, Victome earned a starting role at cornerback. He co-led the team with four pass breakups and was eighth on the team in tackles. He also showed his skills on special teams, blocking one field goal, and forced two fumbles.
Aurélie Dubuc (hockey) – an RSEQ Second Team All-Star and All-Rookie Team member, Dubuc set a team record with five straight wins, including two over the no. 1 ranked team in U SPORTS. Overall, she recorded nine wins in fourteen games in net this season, recording a .926 save percentage.
Trinity Esprit (soccer) – an OUA Second Team All-Star and U SPORTS All-Rookie Team member, Esprit started 11 games at defence for the Gee-Gees, scoring two goals in the regular season. Her speed and skill helped Ottawa hold opponents to just four goals against in 14 games. She was also named the FISU World Cup Tournament MVP.
Madison Grant (rugby) – the RSEQ Rookie of the Year, Grant tied for second in the conference with seven tries in the regular season. She was named match MVP of the RSEQ Championship Game and twice at nationals, also earning a spot on the U SPORTS Championship Tournament All-Star team. She played for Canada's senior women in November in a tour.
Natsuki Szczokin (basketball) – an OUA All-Rookie Team member, Szczokin started 15 games and was third on the team in minutes per game. She was second on the team with 52 assists and third in steals, also averaging 7.1 points per game.
TOP 4 NOMINEES FOR GEE-GEES COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AWARD
Katherine Bearne (soccer) – Bearne has contributed to the academic community, acting as Valedictorian at her commencement ceremony in spring of 2019. Always willing to help with soccer clinics for youth players, Bearne is a tremendous student-athlete role model and won the OUA East Community Service Award this season.
Gordon Forrest – a second-year accounting student, Forrest was recognized with the U SPORTS and RSEQ Awards for Community Service this season. A Co-Creator of Ottawa Burgerfest which raises funds for the Canadian Mental Health Association, Forrest is also a director with Telfer International, and was an environmental volunteer with AIESEC last summer.
Meagan McGaughey – McGaughey is a weekly volunteer with a community skate program, a member of the Student Athlete Council, and a volunteer at CHEO where she works to support patients and their familes in the Family Room. The fourth-year forward also started a scholarship in memory of her friend, Mélisa Kingsley.
Meredith Sirrs – The winner of the RSEQ Leadership and Engagement Award, Sirrs has a passion for interacting with different people of different ages and bonding over their mutual love for a sport. A second-year International Development and Globalization student, Sirrs led clinics and school visits throughout the last two seasons.