PROVIDENCE, R.I. -
The Providence College men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams announced their 2016-17 award winners during their 33rd annual end-of-the-year banquet on Sunday, April 9.
The Luciani Award was awarded to senior Helen Smith (Belmont, MA.) Named for Cindi Luciani ’91, this award honors the women’s most valuable student-athlete in dual and championship meet competition as voted by team members and coaching staff. One of the most versatile swimmers Providence has ever seen, Smith graduates as the second all-time scorer in Friar history with 918.25 points. In dual meet competition, she consistently raced and scored in the backstroke, individual medley, distance and butterfly events and broke the school record mid-season in the 200 meter backstroke. At the 2017 BIG EAST Championships, Smith was the only Friar on the womens side to score in each of her individual swims, scoring tenth in the 200-yard IM, ninth in the 400-yard IM and seventh in the 200-yard backstroke, all with lifetime bests. In addition, she led off the team’s 800 Freestyle relay which set a new school record.
Sophomore Jonathan Batista (Southborough, MA) was honored with The Bowden Award. Named for Horace Bowden ’89, this award honors the men’s most valuable student-athlete in dual and championship meet competition, as voted by the coaching staff and team members. Batista led the Friars in team scoring during the season with 258.75 points, recording lifetime best times while swimming both backstroke and IM events and leading Providence to the team title at the Harold Anderson Invitational. At the BIG EAST Championships, Batista placed 14th and 15th in his specialty 100-yard and 200-yard backstroke, respectively and closed out an outstanding season with another strong performance at the conference meet.
Freshmen Grace Carey (West Chester, PA) and Patrick “PK” Brannigan (Darien, CT) were named winners of the O’Neill Family Award. Created in 2008 and named for head coach John O’Neill, the O’Neill Family Award honors the most valuable male and female freshmen athletes in meet competitions, as voted on by the team and coaching staff. Carey quickly became a big part of the Friars’ lineup in the distance events and was the third leading scorer this season as well as the top scorer among freshmen for the Friar women. In addition, Carey’s 1000-yard (10:26.84) and 1650-yard (17:18.08) yard freestyle bests were also new freshman school records for the Friars. Brannigan made an instant impact in the sprint freestyle events for the men and garnered the second spot in leading points scored for the 2016-17 season. He broke the school record in the 50-meter freestyle during the season and at the BIG EAST Championships, Brannigan finished in the top 16 for two individual events, setting new freshman records in the 50-yard freestyle (21.49) and 100-yard freestyle (46.51).
Sophomore Maddie Snow (Bethany, CT) won the Clara Lamore Walker Award, while sophomore Ryan Trammell (Lake Mary, FL) earned recognition with the Jan and Brian Larkin Award. These awards recognize the female and male athletes who have improved the most during the season, as voted on by the team and coaching staff. A butterfly, distance and IM standout, Snow rebounded from illness during her freshman year to have an outstanding season, culminating in lifetime best performances in both the 200-yard IM and 200-yard Butterfly at the 2017 BIG EAST Championship. Trammell’s development in the Breaststroke events became the backbone to the Friar lineup this season, as he broke both the school records in the 100 and 200-meter Breaststroke mid-season as well as the team record in the 100-yard breaststroke (56.67) at the 2017 BIG EAST Championships.
Senior Sarah Burrous (Newburyport, MA) was recognized with the Sears Diving Award. This award, named for Patrick Sears ’88 and Kevin Sears ’93, honors the athlete who makes an outstanding contribution to the sport of diving at Providence College. Sarah’s overall improvement over her four years led to her qualifying for the BIG EAST Championships in both her junior and senior years. Burrous scored at both of her appearences ag the conference championships, most recently placing eighth on the 1-meter board at the 2017 BIG EAST Championship.
Senior Kelly Quinn (Garden City, NY) and sophomore Liam Straker (South Glastonbury, CT) were honored with the David Hardy Coach’s Award. Named for David Hardy ’89, this award honors the male and female student-athletes who exhibit those qualities which Hardy brought to the swimming and diving team: loyalty, dedication, good sportsmanship and outstanding effort in the pool and in the classroom. Quinn excelled in sprint freestyle and butterfly events, embracing the sprinters’ individualized workout program and developing over her four years in Friartown into one of the Friars top sprinters. Straker blossomed as a sophomore this season, becoming the point man for both training and racing in the mid-distance freestyle events. His steady improvement all year helped anchor the Friars in both dual and Championship meet competition.
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