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All-Sports Banquet Held At Joyce Center Arena

April 30, 2003

NOTRE DAME, Ind. —- The second annual O.S.C.A.R.S. (Outstanding Student-Athletes Celebrating Achievements and Recognition Showcase) was held Wednesday evening at the Joyce Center Arena and honored the more than 750 student-athletes who participated on the University of Notre Dame’s athletic teams during the 2002-03 school year.

The presentation of the school’s three major athletic awards – The Byron V. Kanaley Award, The Francis Patrick O’Connor Award and The Christopher Zorich Service Award – highlighted the evening’s festivities which included artistic performances by several student-athletes. A member of each team was selected for the Notre Dame Club of St. Joseph Valley Rockne Student-Athlete Award and the Notre Dame National Monogram Club MVP Award.

In addition, certificates were presented to 36 student-athletes who participated in the second annual Rosenthal Student-Athlete Leadership Institute.

Four student-athletes were presented with the Byron V. Kanaley Award – women’s soccer player Ashley Dryer (Salt Lake City, Utah), volleyball player Keara Coughlin (Chicago, Ill.), men’s soccer player Andreas Forstner (Gerlinden, Germany) and softball player Alexis Madrid (Temecula, Calif.).

The Kanaley Award, the most prestigious honor presented to student-athletes, has been presented each year since 1927 to senior monogram athletes who have been most exemplary as both students and leaders. Chosen by the University’s Faculty Board on Athletics, the awards are named in honor of Bryon V. Kanaley, a 1904 Notre Dame graduate who was a member of the Irish baseball team as an undergraduate. Kanaley went on to a successful banking career in Chicago and served the University as a lay trustee from 1915 until his death in 1960.

Women’s tennis player Katie Cunha (Mercer Island, Wash.) and baseball standout Steve Sollmann (Cincinnati, Ohio) received the Francis Patrick O’Connor Award. Since 1973, the University has presented this award in the name of O’Connor, a former student-athlete who died in 1973 following his freshman year at Notre Dame. Pat was the son of William “Bucky” O’Connor who played guard in football for Notre Dame in the 1940’s.

The award honors one female and one male senior student-athlete who best displays the total embodiment of the true spirit of Notre Dame as exemplified by their contributions and inspirations to their respective teams. To be considered, student-athletes must possess those qualities attributed to Pat O’Connor himself – caring, courage, confidence, encouragement, humility, honesty, humor, kindness and patience.

Senior Betsy Lazerri (Kennet Square, Pa.) is the recipient of The Christopher Zorich Award, which was first presented in 1998. It was created to recognize the contributions of Notre Dame student-athletes to the University and community at-large. The award holds the name of Christopher Zorich, a two-time football All-American and 1991 graduate.

Dryer becomes the fourth Irish women’s soccer player to receive the Kanaley Award. A four-year starter for the nationally-ranked women’s soccer program, she helped her team compile a 53-12-2 record from 1999-2002 that included three BIG EAST titles and four NCAA tournament appearances. Dryer appeared in 82 games during her career, earning 67 starts in those contests and finishing with three goals and 12 assists.

A defensive midfielder, she served as a tri-captain on this year’s Irish squad. A member of the Academic Honors Program which pairs student-athletes with a faculty mentor, Dryer has been involved with many community service projects through the Student Development Office within the athletics department. She will graduate in May with a double major in sociology and psychology from the College of Arts and Letters.

Coughlin, a two-year captain (2001-02) and a four-year monogram winner, is the fourth volleyball player to earn the Kanaley honor. She played defensive specialist and the new collegiate volleyball position, the libero. Coughlin registered 681 career digs in 122 career matches and 144 career games played. She ranked second on the team in that category during the ’02 campaign with 274 (2.56 per game). She had her career-best 18 digs against Illinois State this past season. Coughlin ranks in the top-15 all-time in career matches and games played.

Coughlin will graduate in May from the College of Arts and Letters with a degree in theology.

Forstner was a three-year defensive standout on the Notre Dame men’s soccer team and ranks as one of the most talented defensive players in the program’s history. He spent the ’02 season as a student assistant coach as the Irish finished with a 12-6-3 record and earned their second straight NCAA tournament bid. Forstner becomes the seventh member of the men’s soccer program to earn the award.

During his final year of collegiate eligibility, Forstner served as a tri-captain on an Irish team which finished with a 12-7 record and tied for second in the final BIG EAST regular season standings. That season, he helped Notre Dame earn its first NCAA bid since 1996. Forstner played in 54 career games (missing just one start in three seasons) and finished with two goals and three assists. A Dean’s List student, he will graduate in May with a double major in science and business from the College of Science.

Madrid has been one of the most dependable players on the Notre Dame softball team, appearing in 219 out of a possible 221 career contests. She has made 218 starts at second base for Notre Dame and has helped the team win 176 games over the last four years (.778 winning percentage).

Madrid was a ’01 All-Big East first-team selection after batting .303 with 14 RBI and five doubles. She was also named to the ’02 NCAA Region VII all-tournament team after putting up five hits in five games and scoring two runs. Madrid scored the game-winning runs in both of Notre Dame’s victories against Virginia Tech at the ’02 Big East Championship, helping the Irish claim the title. Her career statistics include a .254 average, 10 doubles and 38 RBI. So far this season, she has a .271 average, four doubles, one triple and nine RBI.

Madrid is the fifth softball player and second in as many years to receive the Kanaley Award. She will graduate in May from the College of Arts and Letters with a double major in economics and computer applications.

Cunha, a four-year monogram winner and captain of the ’02-’03 squad, is the fifth Irish women’s tennis player to win the Francis Patrick O’Connor Award. Since the inception of the award, more women’s tennis players have earned the honor than any other sport at Notre Dame. She was a member of the nation’s 44th-ranked doubles team and owns a career record of 82-67, including a 65-48 singles record. Last season Cunha qualified for the ’02 NCAA Doubles Championship with then senior Lindsay Green.

Cunha created the “Ace for the Cure” benefit match in ’02 to raise money for cancer research. The second-annual event was played this year in honor of her late mother, who passed away from the disease. She is a member of Notre Dame’s Academic Honors Program for Student-Athletes and is a four-time Dean’s List selection. Cuhna will graduate in May with a degree in marketing from the Mendoza College of Business.

Sollmann, a junior and tri-captain of the ’03 Irish team, joins Matt Nussbaum (’00) as one of two baseball players to receive the O’Connor Award in the last four years. He ranks fourth in school history with a .372 career batting average, and is already 6th in Notre Dame history with 54 stolen bases. Sollmann is currently among the BIG EAST and national leaders with a .402 batting average, 25 stolen bases, and 50 runs scored in 43 games.

Sollmann was the MVP of the ’02 NCAA South Bend Regional after setting several NCAA and Notre Dame records. As a freshman in ’01, he was named the BIG EAST Rookie of the Year and has twice earned all- conference honors. He has hit in 24 of his last 25 games and has copped conference player-of-the-week honors twice this season. Sollmann is enrolled in the Mendoza College of Business as a marketing major.

Lazerri, one of the top all-around athletes in the track & field program, competes in the heptathlon and pentathlon events. She recorded her best effort at a BIG EAST championship in February of ’02 with a third place finish in the indoor pentathlon, finishing third with 3,510 points. Lazerri is the one-time record holder in both the indoor pentathlon and outdoor heptathlon.

Lazerri has been active in many programs on the Notre Dame campus and in the South Bend community including: Ped’s Christmas Party, Girls in Sports, Girl Scouts, the Salvation Army Christmas Adopt-a-Family (team organizer), Family Reading Night at Meadows Edge Elementary, the H.U.G.S. program at Memorial Pediatrics First United Headstart, Elementary Celebrity Reader and AIDS Research and Awareness Teddy Bear Walk (volunteer organizer). She will graduate in May from the Mendoza College of Business with a major in business administration.

The Rosenthal Student-Athlete Leadership Institute was made possible by the generosity of Richard (Dick) Rosenthal, who earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University in 1954. An All-American on the men’s basketball team, he served as Notre Dame’s director of athletics from 1987-95.

The Institute, which opened in January of 2002, provides opportunities for leadership development and lifelong learning for select student-athletes at Notre Dame.

2003 Notre Dame Club of St. Joseph Valley Rockne Student-Athlete Award Winners:

Baseball Brandon Viloria (Wailuka, Hawaii)
Men’s Basketball Matt Carroll (Horsham, PA)
Jere Macura (Split, Croatia)
Women’s Basketball Alicia Ratay (Lake Zurich, IL)
Karen Swanson (Westlake, OH)
Men’s Cross Country Todd Mobley (West Bloomfield, MI)
Women’s Cross Country Jen Fibuch (Leawood, KS)
Men’s Fencing Adam Harvey (Connersville, IN)
Women’s Fencing Jill Ingram (Grand Rapids, MI)
Football John Crowther (Edina, MN)
Men’s Golf K.C. Wiseman (South Bend, IN)
Women’s Golf Shannon Byrne Arlington, Heights, IL)
Hockey T.J. Mathieson (Clarksville, MD)
Men’s Lacrosse No Scholar-Athlete selected
Women’s Lacrosse Angela Dixon (Pennsauken, PA)
Elizabeth Knight (Baltimore, MD)
Rowing Erica Drennen (Columbus, OH)
Men’s Soccer Alan Lyskawa (Novi, MI)
Women’s Soccer Vanessa Pruzinsky (Trumbull, CT)
Softball Alexis Madrid (Temecula, CA)
Men’s Swimming and Diving.. Andrew Maggio (Cincinnati, OH)
Women’s Swimming and Diving.. Katie Cavadini (South Bend, IN)
Heidi Hendrick (Saginaw, MI)
Men’s Tennis TBA
Women’s Tennis Alicia Salas (Englewood, CO)
Men’s Track and Field Selim Nurudeen (Friendswood, TX)
Women’s Track and Field Jamie Volkmer (Kearney, NE)
Volleyball Kristen Kinder (Fresno, CA)

2003 Notre Dame National Monogram Club MVP Award Winners:

Baseball J.P. Gagne (Bloomington, MN)
Steve Sollmann (Cincinnati, OH)
Men’s Basketball Matt Carroll (Horsham, PA)
Women’s Basketball Jacqueline Batteast (South Bend, IN)
Men’s Cross Country Tim Moore (Novi, MI)
Women’s Cross Country No MVP selected
Men’s Fencing Ozren Debic (Zagreb, Croatia)
Women’s Fencing Alicija Kryczalo (Gdansk, Poland)
Football Shane Walton (San Diego, CA)
Men’s Golf Brandon Lunke (San Antonio, TX)
Women’s Golf Katie Brophy (Spokane, WA)
Hockey John Wroblewski (Neenah, WI)
Men’s Lacrosse No MVP selected
Women’s Lacrosse TBA
Rowing No MVP selected
Men’s Soccer Eric Braun (Frankfurt, Germany)
Women’s Soccer Ashley Dryer (Salt Lake City, UT)
Softball TBA
Men’s Swimming and Diving Matthew Obringer (Jacksonville, FL)
Women’s Swimming and Diving Lisa Garcia (Denver, CO)
Men’s Track and Field Luke Watson (Stillwater, MN)
Women’s Track and Field Tameisha King (Mableton, GA)
Men’s Tennis Brent D’Amico (Castle Rock, CO)
Women’s Tennis Caylan Leslie (Newport Beach, CA)
Volleyball Kristen Kinder (Fresno, CA)

Rosenthal Student-Athlete Leadership Institute Certificates of Merit:

Lauren Barbir (Montgomery, TX) Golf
Alice Barek (Omaha, Neb.) Rowing
Casey Buckstaff (Mt. Prospect, IL) Rowing
Darrell Campbell (South Holland, IL) Football
Kimberly Carpenter (Webster, NY) Soccer
Derek Curry (Sealy, TX) Football
Amy Deger (Pittsburgh, PA) Swimming
Pat Dillingham (Portola Valley, CA) Football
Gavin Ferlic (South Bend, IN) Golf
Leslie Gebauer (Columbus, OH) Golf
Mike Goolsby (Joliet, IL) Football
Peter Graham (Luxembourg) Tennis
Jennifer Handley (Barrie, Ontario) Cross Country/ Track & Field
Suzanne Hayes (Dublin, Ireland) Golf
Bridget Higgins (Wilton, CT) Lacrosse
Brandon Hoyte (Parlin, NJ) Football
Omar Jenkins (Dallas, TX) Football
Daniel Klauer (Granger, IN) Golf
Nataline Ladine (Sacramento, CA) Rowing
Michael Macaluso (Oak Brook, IL) Leprechaun
Cassie Markstahler (North Manchester, IN) Rowing
Greg Martin (Plano, TX) Soccer
Katie Neff (St. Louis, MO) Volleyball
Devon Prescod (Marietta, GA) Soccer
Vanessa Pruzinsky (Trumbull, CT) Soccer
Kevin Richards (Warwick, Bermuda) Soccer
Mike Reiss (St. Pete, FL) Cheerleading
Chad Riley (Houston, TX) Soccer
Rebecca Rogers (Alpharetta, GA) Golf
Javier Sanchez (Miami, FL) Baseball
Cara Shiel (San Juan Capistrano, CA) Cheerleading
Merideth Simon (Flemington, NJ) Lacrosse
Daniel Stevenson (Barrington, IL) Football
Melissa Tancredi (Ancaster, Ontario) Soccer
Ashlee Warren (Gibsonburg, OH) Rowing
Kathleen Welsh (Medford, NJ) Rowing