37th Annual Women's Athletics Awards Presentation
April 27, 2011
Andy Ortegon, Texas Media Relations
AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas pride filled Bass Concert Hall, Texas Performing Arts Center on Monday night. The 37th Annual Women’s Athletics Awards Presentation provided an evening for all UT female student-athletes to honor one another for their outstanding achievements throughout the academic school year in front of an audience of their parents, peers and coaches.
“Tonight is one of the most fun nights of the year, because you get to see the community that you are a part of at The University of Texas,” volleyball’s Juliann Faucette said. “All year most of us athletes get the support of our team and fans and know we are representing our university. But tonight it’s like meeting the rest of your extended family. You get to come together with a huge community of athletes that understand your sacrifices and your achievements. Being honored by them is something that is uniquely special.”
Faucette won the second annual Longhorn Athlete of the Year Award for her achievements on the volleyball court. In the fall season, she led her team to a 27-6 record and a third straight trip to the NCAA Semifinals.
In addition to celebrating one another, the awards presentation is an opportunity for student-athletes to be able to celebrate Texas pride and spirit of Texas’ commitment to excellence.
“This is Longhorn tradition at its finest,” said track and field’s Chalonda Goodman. “Everyone in this room is an outstanding athlete. We don’t technically need a night of recognition to tell us that we are outstanding at our sports. But at Texas, we believe in celebrating great achievement. That is Texas pride.”
Goodman took home the Jamie Carey Comeback Award, which is given to athletes who have suffered disabling injuries during competition and have shown excellence and bravery in their recuperation and return to sport. And while the night was undoubtedly an excellent opportunity for athletes to support one another, it was not entirely void of the competitive spirit.
“I honestly think we could pull out a deck of cards, and everyone involved in the game would get ridiculously competitive. That’s just how Texas athletes are,” said swimming’s Karlee Bispo, who was presented with the Jill A. Sterkel Leadership Award and also a Longhorn Athlete of the Year nominee.
“This whole evening has a really cool feel to it. We get to walk in on the orange carpet and get to eat great meals and greater desserts. It also is really cool just to get to see what everyone else is wearing. As a representative of the swim team, I feel comfortable saying that we appreciate being able to dress up and showcase our looks with dry hair. Every other sport has the dry hair look on us. But tonight, we get a turn to show the campus what we look like with our hair down.”
Collectively, seven awards were handed out, honoring teams and individuals alike. But for those who were neither nominated nor recognized, the night served as an excellent milestone marker for accomplishments achieved throughout another year at The University of Texas.
“All year long you are always in the classroom, practicing or playing in various games, matches and meets. You don’t really get time to celebrate anything that you’ve accomplished,” Faucette said. “Oddly enough, you come here tonight to recognize the greatest athletes at this university in the present. But what it inadvertently ends up doing is helping you appreciate all the opportunity you have been given, and all the accomplishments you have made in the past. That is hands down, the best part of this presentation."