Lakers celebrate 23rd year of excellence

Lakers celebrate 23rd year of excellence

Every year there are new successes to celebrate, new records that have been broken and new reasons to be excited for the future.

This year was no different for the Nipissing Lakers, who had some memorable performances throughout 2015-16 season which saw the basketball programs battle for playoff spots, the volleyball teams continue their climb up the OUA standings, the Nordic and cross country teams push for hardware, the soccer teams made waves in the OUA's East Division, the Rowing and Lacrosse teams continue to progress, the men's hockey team continued their playoff streak, making it seven straight years in the post-season and the women's hockey team's incredible run to the second round of the playoffs in just their third year.

All of that, summed up, made for a great season. The future is bright for the Lakers and Nipissing honoured those student-athletes Thursday night at their 23rd annual athletic awards banquet.

Female Athlete of the Year
This year's female athlete of the year and first time winner, established herself as one of the top goalies in the OUA.

Jackie Rochefort, the native of Ajax, ON combined poise in goal and game-breaking saves when needed as she led her team to a fifth place finish in the regular season and into the second round of the playoffs.

Rochefort set personal career highs in wins, save percentage, minutes played, goals against average and total saves.

A desire to always be the best she can and always looking to improve her on ice performance, Rochefort has become a leader not only in the Lakers dressing room, but off the ice as well.

She was instrumental in running and executing the Lakers Pink The Rink game for Breast Cancer Awareness, on top of participating in it as well as devoted hours in the community working with young goalies with North Bay Minor Hockey.

Her commitment and dedication to the program has allowed her to be a leader for the Women's Hockey program and she will continue to be in the future.

Male Athlete of the Year
While the season didn't end in a championship for Nipissing, the team once again qualified for the playoffs and for the fourth straight season and the team's captain, this year's male athlete of the year, Jean-Michel Paulin, was one of the biggest reasons for this.

Paulin was once again was named an OUA second team all-star.

The fifth-year captain and BPHE student-athlete had a career year and led the Lakers to a fourth straight playoff appearance.

In 15 games, Paulin scored eight goals, added two assists for 10 points and fired 21 shots on goal throughout the season, where Nipissing finished with a record of 5-5-6, good for 21 points and fifth place in the OUA East Division.

Paulin had three two-point games – Sept. 26 versus Laurentian, Oct. 10 versus UOIT and Oct. 25 against RMC.

In two of those three outings, Paulin scored twice, providing half the offence in a 4-2 win over Laurentian and all of the offence in a 2-0 victory over RMC.

The local product finished tied for sixth in the OUA in goals, first in assists and fourth in total points.

In his final two seasons with the Lakers, Paulin scored 11 goals, added three assists, good for 14 points in 31 games.

Lakers head coach Carlo DeVuono said Paulin was a great leader and ambassador.

"You've been role models for the younger Lakers and have served the program well as ambassadors for Nipissing University. The work ethic, class and leadership you exhibited as a player will find you also achieving excellence in your career," he said.
"Congratulations on all of your accomplishments while at Nipissing University. You will be missed and we will strive to carry on the tradition that you all have helped to establish within the soccer program," DeVuono added.
 
Lakers Award Winners
 
2015-2016 OUA ALL-STARS
Jean-Michel Paulin – Men's Soccer, Second Team All-Star
Jessica Demers – Nordic Skiing, All-Star Team
Jordan Cascagnette – Nordic Skiing, All-Star Team
Alexe Galipeau-Wilson – Women's Basketball, All-Rookie Team
Kalil Langston – Men's Basketball, All-Rookie Team
Stacey Henshaw – Women's Hockey, All-Rookie Team

Leckie Award
Harrison Harper – Men's Hockey

M.E. Follis Award
Jack Peckham – Men's Volleyball

Constable Andrew Keating Memorial Award
Mike Balllagh – Men's Volleyball

Joshua Carfagnin Award
Laura McKenzie – Women's Hockey
Katie Kozub – Cross Country
Jordon Campbell – Men's Basketball
Erik Robichaud – Men's Hockey

Lakers Spirit Award
Isaac Shin – Men's Basketball

Student Trainer of the Year
Erika Lee – Women's Hockey

Lakers MVP
WBB - Claire Abbott
MBB - Joey Puddister
WCC - Katie Gibson
MCC - Travis Mann
WHKY - Jackie Rochefort
MHKY - Colin Campbell
LAX - Nick Chaykowsky
WNOR - Jess Demers
MNOR - Jordan Cascagnette
WSOC - Carlee Bennard
MSOC - Jean-Michel Paulin
WVB - Christina Caruso
MVB - Cam Branch
ROW - Olivia Jeans

Lakers Rookies
WBB - Alexe Galipeau-Wilson
MBB - Kalil Langston
WCC - Katie Gibson
MCC - Travis Mann
WHKY - Stacey Henshaw
MHKY - Joel Herbert
LAX - Tyler Goodchild
WNOR - Lindsay Inkila
MNOR - Brett Hotchkiss
WSOC - Andrea Dermott
MSOC - Alex Zero/Jamal Brown
WVB - Olivia Robinson
MVB - Dan Miller
ROW - Lisa Davies

Lakers P.R.I.D.E. Award
WBB - Jamie Soffer
MBB - Jordan Roberts
WCC - Stephanie Leggat
MCC - Kevin Durkee
WHKY - Carly Marchment
MHKY - Dane Horvat
LAX – Curtis Perry
WNOR - Shelby Dickey
MNOR - Matt Chalmers
WSOC – Shannon Russell
MSOC - Derek Petrie
WVB – Tracy Hammerton
MVB - Warren Taylor
ROW – Brianna Jeans

Rookie of the Year
Female – Alexe Galipeau-Wilson – Women's Basketball
Male – Kalil Langston – Men's Basketball

Athletes of the Year
Female – Jackie Rochefort – Women's Hockey
Male – Jean-Michel Paulin – Men's Soccer

Golden Hawks blank Gyphons 2-0
September 23, 2015 Golden Hawks blank Gyphons 2-0