WALTHAM, Mass. - On April 30, the Brandeis University Department of Athletics held its annual end-of-year dinner and handed out its departmental awards.
Athletic Directors Awards are presented to student-athletes who have displayed general excellence in representing Brandeis Athletics. They were awarded to men's basketball player Kevin Olson of Rockport, Mass., and women's volleyball player Lorraine Wingenbach of Buffalo, N.Y. Olson, a guard, was recognized as the winningest senior in the history of the men's basketball team, having helped the squad to three straight NCAA Division III tournament appearances, including a berth in the Elite Eight as a junior. This season, he led all of Division III in 3-point shooting percentage at 58.9 percent, despite the NCAA having moved the line back by a foot entering the season.
Wingenbach, an outside hitter became the University's first-ever volleyball All-American as a junior. A two-time All-University Athletic Association selection, she is Brandeis's all-time leader in kills and second in digs and service aces. Wingenbach helped the Judges win back-to-back ECAC Division III New England titles in her sophomore and junior seasons.
The Charles Napoli '58 Scholar-Athlete Award, given to an outstanding student-athlete who has excelled in the classroom and in the athletic arena, was presented to men's fencer Will Friedman of Newton, Mass. Friedman, competing in foil, became just the second men's fencer in Brandeis history to qualify for the NCAA Championships four straight years. He was an All-American as a junior, when he finished seventh in the nation. Friedman helped the Judges to back-to-back Northeast Fencing Conference championships, including a perfect 10-0 NFC record as a senior. Friedman carried a 3.75 grade-point average as a double major in philosophy and politics and will attend law school in the fall.
The Morry Stein Award of Valor, given to a student-athlete who has demonstrated courage both on and off the playing fields and/or intervened to better the lives of others, was presented to Katy Agule of Acton, Mass. Agule, a team captain of the women's cross country and track and field teams, earned All-University Athletic Association honors in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and the 1,500-meter run during the outdoor season. She also served as vice-president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and was one of the founders of the Brandeis chapter of Colleges Against Cancer. Agule, who served as the ceremony committee chair for the University's inaugural Relay For Life in 2008 and was the overall co-chair in 2009, interned with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network office in Washington, D.C., in 2008.
The Morris Sepinuck Sportsmanship Award, given to the varsity athlete who not only displays outstanding sportsmanship but also makes a significant contribution to the athletic program and to campus life at Brandeis, was presented to women's basketball player Cassidy Dadaos of Healdsburg, Calif. Dadaos, a forward for the team that advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division III tournament in 2009, was a two-time team captain in a stretch in which the Judges never missed the NCAAs. She also earned two Academic All-UAA selections, served as a facility manager for the Gosman Athletic Center and was a three-time president of Brandeis's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Dadaos was a two-time Team Development chair for Brandeis' Relay For Life event.
The Max I. Silber Award, given to the outstanding female student-athlete, was presented to Anat Ben Nun of Haifa, Israel. Ben Nun, a member of the track and field team, was a three-time All-American in the triple jump, having missed her entire junior season with an injury. Ben Nun finished sixth in the nation in 2009, while her best career performance came as a sophomore, when she was NCAA Division III runner-up in the event. She was a four-time University Athletic Association champion in the triple jump, three times indoors and once outdoors, with three All-UAA honors in the high jump as well.
The Harry, Joseph and Ida Stein Award, given to the outstanding male athlete, was presented to men's basketball player Steve DeLuca of Merrimack, N.H. A graduate student this year, DeLuca was part of two NCAA tournament teams, and this season became the Judges' first All-American, as selected by the National Association of Basketball Coaches, since 1978. A three-time team leader in scoring and rebounding, DeLuca was Brandeis's career leader in games started and finished fifth on the University's career scoring list with 1,595 points. He also ranks among the Judges' top 10 in rebounds (673, 9th), blocked shots (51, 8th), steals (117th, T8th) and 3-pointers (134, 6th).