HANOVER, N.H. – The Dartmouth College Department of Athletics and Recreation hosted its annual Celebration of Athletic Excellence on Tuesday evening on Memorial Field, honoring the achievements of teams and individuals for the 2016-17 academic year.
The ceremony took place on Memorial Field for the first time and utilized the Stephen Lewinstein Family '63 & '98 Video Scoreboard in the south end zone throughout.
Dartmouth's highest athletic honor, the Kenneth Archibald Prize, is presented annually to “the member of the graduating class who has been four years in attendance, who has been the best all-around athlete, regard also being had to moral worth and high standing in scholarship.” The winner traditionally exemplifies all that we hope and expect of the men and women who put on the Dartmouth uniform and take to the field of play. This student-athlete is to be of exemplary athletic skill, of great academic prowess and of high moral character.
Taylor Ng of the women's tennis team was named this year's recipient following a stellar career with the Big Green. She leaves Hanover as the program's all-time winningest player in singles (with a record of 96-35), doubles (88-40) and total victories. This past season, the co-captain helped the Big Green make their second NCAA team appearance in the past three seasons and was named the ITA Northeast Region Senior Player of the Year. In 2015, Ng became the first Dartmouth women's tennis player to qualify for the NCAA singles championship and was part of the first pair to qualify for the doubles championship the following season.
The Class of 1976 Award is presented annually to the most outstanding female athlete of the year. This year, the honor was split between a pair of tremendous young women who excelled in competition.
For the second year in a row and the fifth time in the last six years, the award went to a member of the women's track & field team as freshman Cha'Mia Rothwell took home the honor. Rothwell put together an outstanding first year in the Upper Valley, claiming three Ivy League titles between indoor and seasons in addition to setting three new program records in the long jump (indoor), 60m hurdles (indoor) and 100m hurdles (outdoor).
The second recipient was Foreste Peterson of the women's alpine team. A first-team All-East selection after winning two giant slalom races and placing in the top five a total of six times at the various carnivals, she capped her season with a spot on the All-America First Team by finishing third in the slalom at the NCAA Championships in March, one year after earning first-team honors in the giant slalom. Her performance helped the alpine team finish second and the Big Green to place fourth overall, the squad's best showing at the NCAAs in five years.
The Alfred E. Watson Trophy is presented annually to Dartmouth's top male student-athlete. This year's recipient was Beau Sulser, a pitcher on the baseball team. Sulser wasn't just any pitcher in 2017, he was named the Ivy League Pitcher of the Year, becoming just the fifth Big Green hurler to earn the distinction. Fans might remember Sulser's outstanding performance at No. 17 Miami when he allowed just one run on two hits, while striking out 10 across seven innings against the national powerhouse Hurricanes, but he was stellar throughout the entire season. He finished with six wins in seven starts and posted the second-best strikeout-to-walk ratio among all Division I pitchers, striking out 52 batters and walking just five, while also finishing the year with the lowest opponents batting average (.201) among Ivy League Pitchers.
The Class of 1948 Scholar-Athlete Awards, given “to one male and one female of the junior class, who have combined outstanding performance in athletics and significant achievement in academics,” were presented to junior Morgan Philie of the field hockey team as well as Wyatt Omsberg of the men's soccer team.
Selected as a captain for her junior season, Philie was an All-Ivy League Second Team selection this past fall, has been named to the National Field Hockey Coaches Association All-Academic Team the last two years and is a proud member of the ROTC here at Dartmouth. In 2016, she smashed nearly all of her career highs and was tied for the team lead in goals, while leading the Ivy League and finishing fifth in the nation in defensive saves.
Omsberg is pursuing a dual major in government and sociology and has a 3.47 grade point average. An important component to his team, he was named to the NSCAA All-American Third Team, the only Ivy League representative on any of the three All-American teams. He was named the conference's top defensive player as well as a First Team All-Ivy selection for the second consecutive season. Omsberg was a member of the stout Big Green defensive front that only surrendered 12 goals in the regular season en route to its third consecutive Ivy League championship
The Timothy Wright Ellis 1955 Memorial Award is given to a man showing extracurricular and scholastic drive, spirit, loyalty and amiability and is nominated and voted on by the captains of the men's teams. Brendan Barth of the men's soccer team was named this year's recipient. Characterized by his teammates as one of the most well rounded individuals on campus, as he is not only heavily involved in his sport, but also with a number of clubs, bands and service activities. Barth has spent countless hours as a volunteer at the Thetford afterschool program. He is a pre-health mentor and a Rocky Leadership Fellow. His talents off the field also include an ear for music, as he is also a member of the Barbary Coast Jazz ensemble and has his own student band.
The 2016-17 Agnes Kurtz Award, given to “that woman who best combines proficiency in athletics with dedication to the furthering of women's sports” as nominated and voted on by the captains of the Big Green women's teams was presented to Mackenzie St. Onge of both the women's hockey and rugby teams.
St. Onge was described by one of her many teammates as “the embodiment of a true athlete.” Another said that she is “fiercely loyal to her teammates and non-teammates alike, and has a fantastic and healthy vision for the future of Dartmouth athletics.” As a senior this past season, she served as team captain of the hockey team, appearing in all 28 games. Her hockey career ended with an Academic All-Ivy honor before hanging up her skates only to put on a pair of cleats to join the rugby team for the spring.
Jeremiah Douchee of the football team was recognized as the winner of the Class of 1950 Award as “the varsity student-athlete who has demonstrated the most extraordinary commitment to community service.” A native of Chicago, Douchee's interpersonal skills, sense of humor and comfort in discussing social issues, problems and concerns have allowed him to be an effective bridge in the college community. The list of community service activities both on and off campus is extensive, from Coaching for Captains to the START Ready Program, Big Green Read to March of Dimes, Children of Flint to the African American Society. He is also involved in Green Key, the President's Committee on Sexual Assault, Locked Up and Locked Out, Alpha Phi Alpha, Tucker Fellow and several more. On the field of competition, he posted 14 tackles, one for a loss, and blocked three kicks, two against Harvard and another on the final play to clinch a 20-17 victory over Towson.