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Oregon Sports Awards 2011

Last Sunday evening I was honored to have been invited by SportsOne to attend the annual Oregon Sports Awards on the Nike campus.   The Oregon Sports Awards pay tribute to Oregon’s finest athletes, coaches and sports performances of the past year. Hosted by former NFL great and Emmy Award-winning sportscaster Ahmad Rashad, the Oregon Sports Awards show is a fast-paced, state-of-the-art production comparable to ESPN’s ESPY Awards on a smaller scale. Legendary Portland Trail Blazers broadcaster Bill Schonely served as event ambassador. Oregon’s sports legacy runs deep. Year after year the Oregon Sports Awards honor outstanding professional and amateur athletes, teams and coaches from many levels and a wide range of sports, growing our state's rich sports heritage.  The event was slickly produced and there was no question that the night was about the athletes.  It was really a celebration of athletic achievement across the state of Oregon. I thought I'd take a minute and highlight the female winners of the evening.  Now, having just said that, when watching the videos highlighting each athletes achievements this year, and overall during their careers, each nominee was unquestionably worthy of winning the trophy. Here's a list of the outstanding female athletes from the evening and the award they took home. Ad Rutschman Award - Small college athlete of the year -- Jackie Imhof from the Oregon Tech softball team. Jackie pitched her team to its First NAIA softball championship and was named MVP of the national tournament. Nike-Steve Prefontaine Award - Prep distance runner of the year -- Megan Fristoe from Summit High School.  The most dominant active distance rurnner in the Oregon prep ranks, Fristoe finished her cross country career for Summit with her third consecutive 5A championship. Johnny Carpenter Award - Prep athlete of the year 4a/3a/2a/1a -- Sarah Bennion from St. Mary's.  Sarah holds four individual track and field titles and also competes in cross country and soccer and is an all-state academic athlete in all three sports. George Pasero Award - Teams of the year.  Oregon Tech Softball and University of Oregon Women's indoor track and field teams both were honored.  The Hustlin' Owls of OIT won their first-ever national championship in softball when they captured the NAIA title this year.  Coach Greg Stewart was named NAIA coach of the year and the Owls are ranked #1 in the 2012 pre-season national poll. The Oregon women won their second consecutive NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship and the Ducks are favored to three-peat. DNA Award - Dedication to Sports.  This award recognizes individuals or organizations for their extraordinary passion and dedication to sports in Oregon.  The receipients of this award are part of Oregon's sports DNA. Judy Sherman - Coach, professor and administrator for the Pacific University Boxers for 39 years.  Judy coached women's volleyball, field hockey, softball, basketall and track and field.  Her list of championships and Hall of Fame awards is long and inspring.



Harry Glickman Award - Professional athlete of the year -- Megan RapinoeThe University of Portland alumna was the breakout star for team USA during the 2011 Women's World Cup. Johnny Carpenter Award -- Prep athlete of the year 6a/5a -- Elizabeth Brenner from Jesuit.  Elizabeth concluded her career at Jesuit with two championships.  She was named 6A basketball player of the year and was a state champion in shot put and second in javelin.  Elizabeth now plays volleyball and basketball at the University of Oregon.


Bill Hayward Award - Amateur athlete of the year -- Jordan Hasay.  University of Oregon track and field and cross country runner, the Duck junior has a long list of national championship awards and was named indoor track and field athlete of the year by the US Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Hats, and shoes, off to you ladies. Side note - in listing these prestigious awards named after prominent athletes and athletic supporters from various areas of business, I don't see an award named after any females?   Interesting.  I bet we could think of more than a handful of outstanding females in Oregon's history who have supported and promoted athletics at top levels.  Names anyone?