As 2022 draws to a close, we decided to take the time to honor some of those who have helped Virginia Cavaliers Athletics have another pretty successful year with the Virginia Athletics Awards and Supremes.
Male Athlete of the Year: Jake Gelof (baseball)
Gelof was the star third baseman for the UVA baseball team, which posted a 39-19 record and helped them reach their second straight postseason. His second-year batting average (.388) and OPS (1.253) both ranked second in the ACC, while he hit 21 home runs. Gelof earned third-team All-American honors and is the first UVA sophomore to reach the Golden Spike semifinals since Nathan Kirby in 2014.
Honorable mentions: Connor Shellenberger (lacrosse), Inaki Montes de la Torre (tennis)
Female Athlete of the Year: Kate Douglas (swimming and diving)
This spring, UVA’s swimming and diving programs won their second consecutive national title. Douglas has built a reputation largely in her own right, winning the CSCAA Women’s Swimmer of the Year and the ACC Scholar-Athlete of the Year. In December, she won her first gold medal in the 200 meters, setting the second-fastest time in history with a time of 2:02.12.
Honorable mentions: Emma Navarro (tennis), Lia Godfrey (football)
Leading guard: Reece Beekman (men’s basketball)
Beekman hits another level in 2022 in a program Tony Bennett is known for his dominant defense. He takes on the opponent’s best backcourt every night and often holds them well below season average. Since January 1, 2022, Beekman has led the ACC in steal percentage and is the only player on the leaderboard in block percentage who is 6’2″ below 6’6″!
Honorable mentions: Andreas Ueland (boys soccer), Kadin Shedrick (boys basketball)
Rookie of the Year: Camryn Taylor (Women’s Basketball)
After moving from Marquette for the 2021-22 basketball season, Taylor led the Cavaliers in scoring in two seasons. She’s lethal in the mid-range and attacking the rim, providing a steady presence inside. Taylor is also very good at attracting contact and getting to the free-throw line, where she shoots nearly 75 percent of the time.
Honorable Mentions: Ethan Anderson (baseball), Jaden Gardner (men’s basketball)
Alumni of the Year: Danielle Collins (Women’s Tennis)
Collins became the top-ranked American women’s tennis player after reaching the semifinals at the Australian Open. She also reached the round of 16 at the US Open after beating two-time champion Naomi Osaka.
Honorable mentions: DeAndre Hunter (men’s basketball), Malcolm Brogdon (men’s basketball)
Coach of the Year: Amaka “Mox” Agugua-Hamilton (Women’s Basketball)
Virginia has just five wins in the 2021-22 college basketball season. After Tina Thompson was fired, coach Mox took the job after an impressive record at Missouri State, including tournament appearances in her final two seasons and the Sweet Ten. Six-year-old grades. She immediately turned things around completely, thanks in no small part to her efforts on the portal. Fan excitement has been revived grandly as the Cavaliers start the 2022-23 season with a 12-1 record.
Honorable mentions: Andres Pedroso (men’s tennis), Todd DeSobo (swimming and diving)
Moment of the Year: Reece Beekman hits corner 3 in final seconds to beat Duke
As with all crunch situations for UVA men’s basketball over the past few years, the ball started in Kihei Clark’s hands. After being closely guarded by Duke’s Paul Banchero, a defensive error opened Beekman’s eyes in the inbounds game. He was 0-3 from beyond the arc that night, but he wasn’t going to let that moment slip away. Beekman makes the shot, silencing Cameron Indoor in the process. Even though the 2021-22 season was ultimately a disappointment for Tony Bennett’s team, beating the No. 7 Blue Devils in this fashion was a signature moment.
Honorable mentions: Devin Ortiz’s grand slam vs. North Carolina, Abby Weaver’s homer lets them down Our Lady
Highlight of the year: Ryan Dunn’s transition dunk over JMU
Ryan Dunn is the newest member of the UVA men’s basketball team, bringing pure excitement to the JPJ crowd. In early December, Dunn threw a spectacular slam on a James Madison defender that earned him the No. 1 spot on SportCenter’s Top Ten Best Plays. The Husses went on to win 55-50.
Honorable mention: Dontayvion Wicks’ catch vs. touchdown run Georgia Institute of TechnologyMadison Morey’s incredible save turned into UVA points
Video game box score: Jake Gelof hits the loop with Cornell
In a 19-1 win over Cornell earlier this season, Virginia baseball’s Jake Gelof hit for the first time in program history. That capped an incredible weekend of three home runs and 13 runs scored at 7/8.
Honorable mentions: Kihei Clark for 25 points (6 3s)/7 assists/6 rebounds vs. Duke, Mir McClain for 22 points/17 vs. William & Mary rebounds
Quote of the Year: Tony Bennett
“People passively recruited a lot of people against us. I said if they can win as much as we do, and they can produce as many players as us into the NBA, then keep talking. If they can’t Well, it’s best to just focus on yourself.”
Tony Bennett is the most polished, down-to-earth guy you’ll ever meet in college basketball. For this reason, UVA fans appreciated it all the more when he decided to show his salty side in Jamie Shaw’s preseason interview. And, as always, Bennett is spot on.
Courage Award: Mike Hollins
Mike Hollins is a hero. His willingness to risk his life for others in a time of terror is impressive and something we can all learn from. With the courage he displayed not only that night, but also in his efforts to restore his body and spirit, he deserves to be recognized not only as a brave man, but as one we all look up to and admire .
As we head into the new year, keeping LaVell Davis Jr., Deshaun Perry, Devin Chandler and the loved ones on our minds remains at the top of our minds. It has certainly been an emotional and difficult end to a year for the UVA community, and the immensely tragic events of November 13 will always be etched in our hearts and minds as we continue to mourn the loss of three very special young people And grief.And, as the Charlottesville and UVA communities continue to recover, it is equally important to be there with the loved ones of those we have lost, and to continue to support Hollins and the other survivors of that terrible night
Wishing you all a safe, happy and wonderful new year. go.