Annual Awards Night Held on Monday, April 16
The 2011-2012 University of Maine Department of Athletics Awards Night was held on Monday, April 16 at Wells Conference Center on the Orono campus. Student-athletes were honored and recognized for their accomplishments the past year.
The night opened with a welcome from Director of Athletics Steve Abbott, along with keynote speaker Jeff Paul. Paul is a former baseball student-athlete and UMaine Sports Hall of Fame Inductee.
SAAC Co-Presidents Jimmy Reed and Kylie Smith handed out student-athlete stoles for the seniors to wear at graduation.
The First Awards of the Night were the Iron Bear Awards, presented by the UMaine Strength and Conditioning Staff. The awards went to Raibonne Charles of the football team and Brittany Ott of the women's ice hockey team.
The Black Bear Citizenship Award was presented to the women's swimming and diving team for their work in the community this past season. The team has volunteered at numerous events throughout the Orono/Old area.
The Wesley D. Jordan Service Award, presented by head athletic trainer Paul Culina, went to Sarah Nichols. Nichols worked with the baseball and swimming and diving programs the past four years. She has spearheaded a lot of the baseball team's social media and video projects.
The Female Student-Athlete of the Year was presented to Stephanie Gardiner of the Field hockey team. Gardiner was named an All-American this past season as she earned a spot on the WomensFieldHockey.com Second Team. The senior co-captain was earlier named the America East Midfielder of the Year and was also selected to the All-America East First Team. Gardiner was also selected to the All-Northeast Region First Team as well.
Spencer Abbott was named the Male Athlete of the Year. Abbott was named a First Team All-American, named the Hockey East Player of the Year and was also the lone unanimous selection to the Hockey East First Team. He was named to the Hobey Baker Hat Trick, as one of the three finalists for the Hobey Baker Award, presented annually to the nation’s top player. He led the nation in scoring with 21 goals and 41 assists for 62 points.
The Female Team of the Year went to the Women's Field Hockey Team who finished 16-4 on the season and was ranked as high as 10th in the nation during the campaign. The Black Bears finished with a record of 13-1 in non-conference play with wins over Boston College, Michigan State and Rutgers.
The Male Team of the Year went to both the baseball team and the football team. The 2011 Maine baseball team won the 2011 America East Championship to earn a berth in the NCAA Regionals. Maine defeated #20 Florida International en route to a third place finish in the regional.
The football team finished 9-4 this past fall and lost to Georgia Southern in the NCAA quarterfinals. The team finished the season ranked eighth in both the Sports Network Poll and the FCS Coaches' Poll.