OUA Announces 2015 Cross Country Major Awards and All-Stars

OUA Announces 2015 Cross Country Major Awards and All-Stars

BURLINGTON, Ont. – Ontario University Athletics (OUA) is excited to announce the 2015 cross country major awards and all-stars.

University of Toronto Varsity Blues standout Gabriela Stafford (Toronto, Ont.) set the pace at the OUA Cross Country Championship in Waterloo, Ont. finishing atop the podium in a time of 19:54.7. 

Stafford, a third-year psychology student-athlete, was named Women's MVP and a first-team all-star for her efforts.  After finishing second last year to former Guelph Gryphon Heather Petrick, the Toronto, Ont. native seized the opportunity, finishing a full 14 seconds ahead of second place finisher, Queen's Gaels runner Julie-Anne Staehli (20:08.3).

Heading into the race, first-year Guelph Gryphon Danielle Jossinet (Cobourg, Ont.) was strongly considered one of the contenders to be named Women's Rookie of the Year once the dust had settled. 

Jossinet, a double medalist at the Ontario High School championship last year, did not disappoint finishing the 6km race 10th overall in 21:05.2.  Jossinet was one of six Guelph runners to finish inside the top 14, as the Gryphon women cruised to an unprecedented 12th consecutive team title.

Once again this year, Guelph Gryphons head coach Dave Scott-Thomas has been selected by his peers as the Women's Coach of the Year.  This is the fourth time in the past five seasons that Scott-Thomas has been recognized with the award.

When Marauders runner Maddy McDonald (Toronto, Ont.) isn't training hard in the trails around McMaster, the fourth-year kinesiology student-athlete spends much of her free time helping out in her local community and is this year's recipient of the Women's Community Service Award.

McDonald is the coordinator for 'MacMentoring,' a mentorship program for McMaster Varsity athletes and at-risk young girls through the Hamilton East Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club.  She also is an Executive Member of McMaster Athletes Care, leading weekly visits to the Hamilton East Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club for a two-hour visit on Wednesday nights.  In May 2014, the Toronto, Ont. native founded 'Edibles to End Cancer' fundraiser in support of cancer research at Princess Margaret Research Institute. Over the past two years, she has prepared and delivered custom-ordered baked goods in exchange for donations, and participated in the 'Walk to End Women's Cancer.'

On the men's side, Queen's Gaels runner Alex Wilkie (Almonte, Ont.) topped a field of 108 runners to claim the individual gold medal at the OUA championship.  Wilkie completed the 10-kilometre race in 30:45.3 and was named Men's MVP and a first-team all-star.

Unlike the women's race, Wilkie, a third-year health studies student from Almonte, Ont., needed almost every metre to secure victory, edging Windsor's Paul Janikowski by a single second.  Wilkie improved on his fifth place finish from a year ago and will now have his sights set on the CIS Championship where he placed 10th last season.

The Guelph Gryphons have built one of the biggest dynasties in Canadian collegiate sports and with a pair of runners named Rookie of the Year, that trend doesn't seem to be coming to an end any time soon.  Guelph's Benjamin Workman was the top rookie, finishing in 12th place in a time 31:25.9 and was named Men's Rookie of the Year.  As the No. 1 ranked Gryphons look to defend their CIS championship title on home soil the next weekend, Guelph will continue to look to Workman to put in work.

In his 17th season with the Windsor Lancers cross country team, his fourth as head coach, Gary Malloy has been named the Men's Coach of the Year.  Malloy, a former member of the Lancer cross country and track and field programs from 1980-82, coached the Lancers to a second-place podium finish in Waterloo, finishing just one point back from the perennial powerhouse Guelph Gryphons.

Guelph Gryphons standout Drew Anderson (Guelph, Ont.) has been recognized for his efforts off the trails with Men's Community Service Award.

Anderson has been actively involved in the community throughout his time at the University of Guelph, volunteering his time at a local AIDS clinic where he assisted with patient care.  He also recently volunteered at the Health and Performance Center where he assisted with physiotherapy treatment. Anderson also volunteers his time to help inspired and educated young students in science and engineering as the Director and Instructor of Creative Encounters with Science, a non-profit organization that reached 1000s of youths aged 7-14.  He is also a coach with the Speed River Extreme Team, teaching children aged 5-8 the fundamentals and enjoyment of track and field and an active lifestyle.

OUA all-star awards are determined based on order with first-team all-stars placing 1st through 7th, followed by second-team all-stars 8th through 14th.

For a complete recap from the OUA Cross Country championship, click here.  Individual and team results can be found here.

OUA MAJOR AWARDS

Women's MVP
Gabriela Stafford (Toronto)

Women's Rookie of the Year
Danielle Jossinet (Guelph)

Women's Community Service Award
Maddy McDonald (McMaster)

Women's Coach of the Year
Dave Scott-Thomas (Guelph)

Men's MVP
Alex Wilkie (Queen's)

Men's Rookie of the Year
Benjamin Workman (Guelph)

Men's Community Service Award
Drew Anderson (Guelph)

Men's Coach of the Year
Gary Malloy (Windsor)

WOMEN'S OUA ALL-STARS

First Team
Gabriela Stafford (Toronto)
Julie-Anne Staehli (Queen's)
Stefanie Smith (Windsor)
Katelyn Ayers (Guelph)
Claire Sumner (Queen's)
Katrina Allison (Guelph)
Sophie Watts (Guelph)

Second Team
Allie Parks (Windsor)
Madeleine Kelly (Toronto)
Danielle Jossinet (Guelph)
Cheryse Mitton (Guelph)
Sarah Wismer (Guelph)
Charlotte Dunlap (Queen's)
Ruth Burrowes (Ottawa)

MEN'S OUA ALL-STARS

First Team
Alex Wilkie (Queen's)
Paul Janikowski (Windsor)
Kevin Tree (Lakehead)
Aaron Hendrikx (Guelph)
Tristan Woodfine (Guelph)
Blair Morgan (McMaster)
Corey Bellemore (Windsor)

Second Team
Connor Darlington (McMaster)
Taylor Forbes (McMaster)
Christian Gravel (Guelph)
Christopher Balestrini (Western)
Benjamin Workman (Guelph)
Joe Kagumba (Windsor)
Alex Berhe (Ottawa)

AROUND OUA: Don Mills Open
October 5, 2015 AROUND OUA: Don Mills Open