Worcester, Mass. – Field hockey star Talia Fish (Philadelphia, Pa.) walked away with a host of honors as the Clark University Department of Athletics handed out awards at its annual “Night of Honors” on Tuesday evening inside Richard C. Daniels Theater at Atwood Hall.
Fish was named the recipient of the Alice Higgins Award, given annually to the female student-athlete who makes a significant contribution to the athletics program and enrich the tradition of Clark Athletics. She was also named the John and Kay Bassett Scholar Athlete Award honoree which goes to the graduating four-year senior participant with the highest grade-point average.
A three-time NEWMAC academic all-conference selection who is also a two-time National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Scholar of Distinction, Fish majored in sociology with a self-designed minor in public health and boasts a 3.92 overall GPA. Already accepted into the University’s accelerated fifth-year master’s program in Public Administration, she started all 68 games of her career, finishing with 66 points. Twice she finished second on the team in scoring – including during her senior season when she earned second-team all-conference honors after finishing with 24 points (nine goals, six assists).
Zach Duffy (Wakefield, Mass.) was named the recipient of the Fred Hebert Trophy, which is given to the top male senior athlete. An all-conference performer in 2013, Duffy anchored a stingy defense that helped the lacrosse program to a school-record eight wins and their first-ever berth in the postseason. He finished ninth in the league in groundballs (49) and second in caused turnovers (25). For his career, he ranks ninth on the school’s all-time list in groundballs (145) and became just the fifth player in school history to start 50 games or more.
Men’s basketball’s Andrew Musler (Belmont, Mass.) collected the Russ Granger Award, given to the male student-athlete who combines both academics with on-field excellence. Musler emerged as one of the best players in the conference after averaging 13.8 points and 8.6 rebounds while shooting 45 percent from the field, including 40 percent from three-point land. An economics major that already has been accepted into the University’s fifth-year master’s program, Musler will pursue his MBA while playing his final season in 2014-15.
Emily Reilly (Marlboro, Mass.) claimed the M. Hazel Hughes Award, given to the senior female student-athlete who has made the most significant impact on the intercollegiate athletics program. A two-time all-conference performer, Reilly scored 1,485 points – good for seventh on the school’s all-time scoring list. She corralled more than 500 rebounds and ranks in the program’s top ten in field goals made, free throws made and three pointers made. She appeared in 104 games, starting 103 of them, reaching double figure point totals in 88 contests.
Four student-athletes – Ashleigh Condon (Hull, Mass.), Janelle Pasternack (North Brookfield, Mass.), Rachel Spera (North Hollywood, Calif.) and Dan Stein (Newton, Mass.) – all received Merit Awards. Bestowed upon senior or graduate student-athletes who have had a significant impact on their sports, these student-athletes have played at an extremely high level and truly helped define their programs at Clark.
Condon, a three-year captain on the women’s basketball team was a two-time all-conference selection and helped lead her team to the postseason on two occasions. A, 1,000 point scorer and one of the most fierce competitors around, Condon played in more than 100 games and dished out more than 300 assists.
An All-New England selection and two-time all-conference pick, Pasternack ranks seventh on the women’s soccer all-time scoring list with 48 points.
Spera became the face of the volleyball program as a freshman and didn’t disappoint. She guided her squad to the most wins in more than a decade in 2013, two postseason appearances and handed out more than 2,600 assists.
Stein was a huge part of the men’s tennis program’s resurrection. He is a three-time all-conference selection, guiding the Cougars to three straight conference tournaments, including an appearance in the title match in 2012. For his career, Stein went 36-15, including a 16-7 mark at No. 1.
Army specialist and lacrosse captain Sam Johnson (Swampscott, Mass.) was honored with the Reed Powell Award. The Powell Award was established last year to honor those within our athletic department who exhibit the most remarkable levels of perseverance, bravery, emotional strength, physical fortitude and courage. Johnson is a three-year member of the program who served our country as a specialist in Afghanistan where he was honored as Warrior of the Week for his work with the support of the provincial reconstruction team’s mission of connecting the Afghan people with their government.
The Richie Fairbanks Service Award was awarded to sports information assistants Kelsey Ring (Stoneham, Mass.) and Annmarie Fransen (Belmont, Mass.). Ring, a senior on the women’s soccer team, has spent four years as the top student assistant, working closely with every sport and assisting with office operations. Fransen, a senior on the women’s basketball team, meanwhile, started off as a game management assistant and quickly progressed to becoming the primary voice and sports information representative at countless athletic events.
Women’s basketball guard Breeann Redman (Bristol, Conn.) became the fourth ever recipient of the Pat Hassett Award which is given annually to the member of the student-athlete population who has made a significant impact on the Clark and Worcester communities through service. A tireless advocate of cancer research, Redman served as president of the University’s Relay For Life chapter and has organized several walks on campus to raise money to help eradicate the disease.
Josh Kent (Longmeadow, Mass.) and Sarah Sachs (Branford, Conn.) were named the recipients of the Senior Class Award. Kent, the captain of men’s swimming team, serves as the president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and assisted with numerous campus wide initiatives, including organizing the donation of more than 70 no-sew blankets to several Worcester-area non-profits.
Sachs, meanwhile, helped steer the women’s tennis program through three different coaches in her four seasons, but remained steadfast in her dedication to the program and her teammates.
Longtime department staff member Pam Moore was honored with the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Appreciation Award. At Clark for 40 years, Moore is an integral member of the administrative support team. She attends games regularly and is a point of contact for student-athletes for work-study, transportation and other tasks.