With the penultimate major award nominee presentation, the University of Victoria Vikes are pleased announce the Female Athlete of the Year finalists, presented by the UVic Alumni Association. This year, the nominee package is chock-full with championship-calibre talent.
The best player from the two-time defending national championship field hockey squad, Anna Mollenhauer, one of the best wings in the country from women’s rugby, Paige Farries, and U SPORTS swimming champion Danielle Hanus make up the top female performers from this season.
Finalist: Paige Farries, Rugby – Red Deer, Alta. (Science)
One of the top rugby players in the program for the past few years, Paige Farries racked up another incredible season for the Vikes on the pitch.
In the fall 15s season, she led the Vikes with seven tries, the second-most in the Canada West. With those results, she not only was named a Canada West First Team All-Star and a U SPORTS First Team All-Star for the second time.
When the 7s season rolled around in the spring, Farries was once again one of the top performers.
Her getaway speed and maneuverability allowed the Vikes to record their second undefeated season in school history. Farries produced a try in the final seconds of a semifinal battle against the University of Alberta Pandas that completed a late comeback. For an encore, she produced three tries in the home tournament finale, which sealed the third-straight Canada West banner for the Vikes.
She would have put her stamp on the national tournament, but it was unfortunately cancelled due to COVID-19.
Finalist: Danielle Hanus, Swimming – Newmarket, Ont. (Humanities)
It is hard to imagine a swimmer having a better performance than what Danielle Hanus pulled off during the U SPORTS National Swim Championship last month at her home pool.
Already one to watch at the national level, Hanus had a meet for the ages. She amassed golds in the 50-metre backstroke, 100m back, 100m butterfly and set a U SPORTS record in the 200m butterfly on the first two days of competition. She was also named a U SPORTS First Team All-Canadian.
Coming back for a third day, she swam in the 4x100m medley relay, where her distance took the Vikes from fifth and gave them the boost they needed to earn a bronze medal.
It wasn’t her first four-gold medal performance of the season, either.
At the Canada West meet in Lethbridge, Hanus complied golds in the 50m back, 100m back, 100m butterfly and 200m butterfly. In the 100m back and 100m fly, she established new conference records. Following all of her accomplishments. She was named the Female Swimmer of the Meet.
Hanus also raced internationally. During the 2019 Pan American Games, she captured silvers in the 100m back and 100m butterfly, along with two silvers in a pair of relays.
Finalist: Anna Mollenhauer, Field Hockey – Victoria, B.C. (Education)
The field hockey program was lodged in a 10-year championship drought before Anna Mollenhauer began to dominate at the Canada West and U SPORTS level.
Now, with the local defender in the mix, the Vikes are the two-time defending Canada West and U SPORTS national champions.
Mollenhauer turned down a chance to train with the senior national program in order to return to the Vikes and to have a crack at repeating as champs on home soil.
Relied on as a leader on a team with no fifth-year presence, Mollenhauer led the Vikes to their 19th Canada West banner while earning All-Star honours along the way.
Winning the conference meant that the Vikes hosted the national championship.
Playing with a broken bone in her foot, Mollenhauer put on a show for the hometown crowd, as she produced a pair of goals in the clinching game over the University of Guelph Gryphons and was named U SPORTS Championship MVP.
Away from the turf, Mollenhauer received the prestigious Top 8 Academic All-Canadian award.
She’s also a rising star internationally, as she has competed multiple times for Canada and was the top player at the U21 Olympic Qualifier in Spain last June.
2019-20 Vikes Award Nominees
Chancellor’s Award – Presented by bubly Sparkling Water
James O’Neill, Men’s Rugby
Puck Louwes – Women’s Soccer
McKenna Simpson – Women’s Rowing
Robert T. Wallace Shield – Presented by Hot House Pizza
Female Rookie of the Year Award
Aida Lissel-DeCorby, Women’s Rowing
Lauren Crisp, Women’s Swimming
Nikki Virk, Women’s Soccer
Robert T. Wallace Shield – Presented by Dairyland
Male Rookie of the Year Award
Diego Maffia, Men’s Basketball
Sajjan Sarai, Men’s Cross Country and Track
William Simpson, Men’s Rowing
Male Athlete of the Year – Presented by Best Western Plus Carlton Plaza
Vaughn Taylor, Cross Country and Track
Isaac Koch, Soccer
Gavin Kratz, Rugby