Brent Mutis, CapU Sport Information & Compliance Officer
A trio of Blues student-athletes have earned the most prestigious honour in the CCAA - the All-Canadian distinction.
Natalie LeClerc and Alanah Dulong of women's soccer earned the nod while Meghan Koven of women's volleyball did as well.
It is the second time earning All-Canadian status for LeClerc while it's the first for Dulong and Koven.
In order to be recognized by the CCAA as an All-Canadian, a student-athlete must be recognized as a first-team conference all-star as well as posting a grade-point average of at least 3.50.
"This award is about excellence and Natalie, Alanah and Meghan each demonstrated that quality on and off the playing field," said Capilano University manager of athletics and recreation Milt Williams. "Academics are every bit as important to a student-athlete's experience at our University as their athletic performance. Clearly, these individuals put in the time and energy to be among the best in their respective sports and in the classroom and they deserve the recognition."
LeClerc, a graduating fifth-year midfielder, was instrumental in the Blues transition game and demonstrated skill and determination all season by winning one-on-one battles distributing the ball to her teammates. Her example showed the standard expected for younger players.
"College sport has taught me what true teamwork and leadership signify," said LeClerc, responding to a CCAA request for reflection on what sport has meant to her university experience. "The relationships I have built through college sport are everlasting and have built me into the woman I am today. The friends I have made challenge me to be the best I can be, which leads me to take on leadership roles inside and outside of the school environment. I am going to carry these positive relationships and leadership lessons into my future outside of Capilano and have college sport to thank for that."
Dulong, a second-year defender, built on her outstanding rookie campaign and provided an outstanding presence on a young Blues back end.
"Being involved in a college sport has contributed to my academic success by enhancing my time management, organizational, and teamwork skills," said Dulong in her response for the CCAA. "Ultimately, it has encouraged me to develop a balance between my school and sports commitments and utilize my time more efficiently and effectively. Additionally, being a part of a sports team has improved my collaboration and teamwork abilities, which has translated into the classroom through group projects, assignments, and networking with other students. Furthermore, playing a college sport has inspired me to strive for excellence both on and off the field, as this experience has allowed me to develop a stronger connection with the university."
Koven, the team captain and only graduating fifth-year player from Blues women's volleyball, was a fixture in the starting lineup as an outside hitter and thrived as a go-to player in the team's attack. She led the team in kills and finished her career among the all-time leaders in multiple statistical categories.
"A big way that college sport has contributed to my academic success is the attachment I have developed with the University, representing the school in athletics has pushed me to succeed in the classroom as well as on the court," said Koven in her CCAA response. "It has also been really great to be constantly surrounded by a group of people with the same goals and destination as you, which makes it easy to keep those goals and to find time for academics."
These three honourees bring to 63 the total number of Blues student-athletes who have earned this recognition.