Written by U SPORTS
Photo by Valerie Wutti
TORONTO, Ontario – Laval forward Sarah-Jane Marois was honoured with the Nan Copp Award as U SPORTS women’s basketball Player of the Year Wednesday night, as the national award winners were celebrated at the annual All-Canadian gala.
Concordia guard Myriam Leclerc captured the Kathy Shields Award as Rookie of the Year, while McMaster guard Hilary Hanaka earned the Sylvia Sweeney Award for Student-Athlete Community Service for her outstanding contribution both on and off the court. Laval forward Khaleann Caron-Goudreau is the Defensive Player of the Year, while her bench boss Guillaume Giroux received the Peter Ennis Award as Fox 40 Coach of the Year. Finally, Acadia winger Lanae Adams is the winner of the Tracy MacLeod Award for her courage in overcoming adversity.
NAN COPP AWARD (Player of the Year): Sarah-Jane Marois, Laval
The undisputed leader of the Rouge et Or offence, Marois saw her name everywhere on the RSEQ’s offensive and defensive leaderboard this season. In 2018-19, the Quebec City native was seventh in points per game (13.0), fourth in assists (3.6), second in three-point percentage (41.0 per cent), led the league in free-throw percentage (94.6 per cent) and was seventh in field goal percentage (44.8 per cent). She is also seventh in blocks (0.5) and eleventh in steals (1.1).
“It was probably her best season ever since coming to Laval. It is an individual award that celebrates the team’s season, and Sarah-Jane’s performance has been consistent throughout the whole year,” said Laval head coach Guillaume Giroux. “She is quick, she puts a lot of pressure on her opponents, she is able to find the available players and has improved a lot on her three-point shooting, which makes her a dangerous player, a very hard one to face.”
CW: Sabine Dukate, Saskatchewan
OUA: Leashja Grant, Lakehead
AUS: Hannah Brown, Cape Breton
KATHY SHIELDS AWARD (Rookie of the Year): Myriam Leclerc, Concordia
Leclerc, a five-foot-10 guard from St. Roch de Richelieu, Que. had a significant impact on the Concordia basketball program and the RSEQ in her first season. The 21-year-old, played all 16 games averaging 36.6 minutes of playing time. She was the leading scorer in the league with 18.8 points per game and led the conference in steals with 2.5 and assists with 4.6 a game.
As a member of the Cégep de Saint-Foy Dynamiques in 2017-18, the accounting major was one of the top players in Quebec. She was a college all-star who averaged 19.1 points a game.
In 2017, Leclerc was one of 24 athletes invited to Canada’s U19 national team tryouts. She was a member of Team Quebec’s U15 program in 2012 and 2013. Leclerc also represented Quebec at the U17 level in 2014 and 2015.
“Her consistent individual performance has afforded us the opportunity to be a good basketball team,” said Concordia head coach Tenicha Gittens. “To come in as a freshman and put up the numbers that she has put up on a weekly basis is pretty special and she is very deserving of the accolade. Myriam will only continue to get better as she continues to develop her game and grow as a leader.”
CW: Nicole Fransson, Trinity Western.
OUA: Kaitlyn Overeem, Waterloo
AUS: Jayda Veinot, Acadia
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Khaleann Caron-Goudreau, Laval
After spending the past several seasons with the NCAA’s University of Texas Longhorns, Caron-Goudreau brought a physical presence to the Rouge et Or, especially in the paint. The Gatineau, Que., native led the RSEQ in blocks per game (1.7) and ranked third in rebounding (9.4 per game).
“Khaleann has had an incredible impact on our team. She always takes on the tallest player of the opposition, which is something our group has been missing for a long time,” said Giroux. “Today it is one of our strengths! We have the second best defence in the country and her presence is directly related to our success. She is very competitive and has brought us a physical presence under the net.”
CW: Summer Masikewich, Saskatchewan
OUA: Nicole Gilmore, Carleton
AUS: Carolina Del Santo, UPEI
SYLVIA SWEENEY AWARD (Student-Athlete Community Service): Hilary Hanaka, McMaster
Hanaka (Hamilton, Ont.) has been a leading figure for the Marauders since she stepped onto the court five years ago. The co-captain and starting guard was among the conference leaders in points per game (14.6; 6th in OUA), assists per game (3.9; 4th in OUA), and shooting percentage (5th in 3PT%; 6th in FG%), but her impact goes well beyond the numbers and even the court.
Hanaka has been recognized on multiple occasions by the university and city for her generous volunteer work, which included the Ray Lewis Award for Community Service for the City of Hamilton. The geography major also took on roles as a Team Rep for McMaster Athletes Care and Varsity Leadership Council, as a member of the McMaster Women’s Athletic Leadership Council, and as a presenter for Marauders in the Classroom. The Academic All-Canadian has also actively participated in organizations like the Neighbourhood Hoops Program, Flamborough Fire, and St. Mary’s Catholic High School.
“Hilary is an outstanding student who generously gives back to both the McMaster and Hamilton communities,” said McMaster head coach Theresa Burns. She particularly likes working with kids, and is so kind, patient and positive with them. She is a tremendous role model and great ambassador for our program.”
CW: Jordan Korol, UBC Okanagan
RSEQ: Audréanne Jean, UQAM
AUS: Josie Gascoigne, Saint Mary’s
PETER ENNIS AWARD (Fox Coach of the Year): Guillaume Giroux, Laval
For the third consecutive season, Guillaume Giroux led Université Laval to a RSEQ regular season title. His squad concluded the calendar with a 15-1 record. On his watch, Laval also set a school record for points since the league moved to a 16-game schedule 16 years ago with 1,116 points on the campaign.
“After only four years leading the Rouge et Or, Guillaume has already earned his place as one of the best coaches in the country,” said Laval Athletic Director Julie Dionne. “Results do not lie. Year after year, he has allowed his team to aspire to the greatest honours.”
CW: Damian Jennings, Calgary
OUA: Andy Sparks, Ottawa
AUS: Fabian McKenzie, Cape Breton
TRACY MACLEOD AWARD (Courage Overcoming Adversity): Lanae Adams, Acadia
Lanae Adams of the Acadia Axewomen is the 2019 winner of the Tracy MacLeod Award, which rewards a women’s basketball player who demonstrates determination, perseverance and unwavering spirit to continue playing the game of basketball.
A third-year forward from Lawrenceville, Georgia, Adams started in 18 games for the Axewomen this season and played in all 20.
She finished fourth in the AUS in rebounds with 6.8 per game, and averaged 8.1 points and 2.4 assists per game for Acadia. Adams also finished seventh in the AUS in steals with 1.6 per game and 14th in minutes with 29.4 per game.
Adams’ journey to Acadia has been exceptional. She has gone through nine knee surgeries/procedures on both her right and left knees. She has torn her ACL and meniscus in both knees, with her right knee being torn and repaired three times.
Despite having NCAA opportunities vanish due to injury, her determination and passion for basketball has pushed her to overcome these physical adversities. A starter and key contributor to Acadia’s success this season, Adams and the Axewomen finished third in the AUS standings with a 13-7 regular season record.
Adams decided to give basketball one more shot while pursuing her Master’s degree in community development with a specialization in sport and event tourism, and has maintained a perfect 4.0 GPA.
“Lanae has walked into our locker room from day one and been a positive leader and voice,” said Axewomen head coach Len Harvey. “Confident in her abilities, without being overbearing, she is a leader on and off the court. She goes out to do whatever she can to help the team. She has been an absolute joy to have on our team.”
CW: Brooklyn Legault, Alberta
OUA: Mackenzie Robinson, Laurentian
RSEQ: Bianca Marois, UQAM
2019 U SPORTS WOMEN’S BASKETBALL ALL-CANADIANS
|Pos.||First Name||Last Name||School||Eligibility||Hometown||Program|
|F||Hannah||Brown||Cape Breton||5||North Sydney, N.S.||Business Admin.|
|F||Sarah-Jane||Marois||Laval||5||Quebec City, Que.||Economics|
|G||Sabine||Dukate||Saskatchewan||4||Ventspils, Latvia||Arts & Science|
|Pos.||First Name||Last Name||School||Eligibility||Hometown||Program|
|G||Myriam||Leclerc||Concordia||1||St. Roch de Richelieu, Que.||Accounting|
|G||Haley||McDonald||Acadia||3||Port Williams, N.S.||Kinesiology|
|Pos.||First Name||Last Name||School||Hometown||Program|
|G||Myriam||Leclerc||Concordia||St. Roch de Richelieu, Que.||Accounting|
|F||Jayda||Veinot||Acadia||Port Williams, N.S.||Science|
|F||Nicole||Fransson||Trinity Western||Edmonton, Alta.||Science|
|G||Amaiquen||Siciliano||Bishop’s||Buenos Aires, Argentina||Business|