BALTIMORE – UMBC Athletics honored its student-athletes at the 2017-18 Grittys, held at the Hotel at Arundel Preserve on May 7, 2018.
Senior Carolyn Jamison (Westminster, Md./Westminster) of women's lacrosse and graduate student Jairus Lyles (Silver Spring, Md./DeMatha) of men's basketball were selected as the Dr. Charles R. Brown Outstanding Athletes for the 2017-18 year.
Four athletes were tabbed Outstanding Senior Athletes. Softball's Tori Alexander (Woodbridge, Va.) and basketball's Laura Castaldo (West Nyack, N.Y.) earned the award on the women's side. Soccer's Gregg Hauck (Linthicum, Md./North County) and swimming and diving's Nikola Trajkovic (Zrenjanin, Serbia) took home the award on the men's side.
Two juniors earned the Matt Skalsky Outstanding Scholar-Athlete award. Basketball's Joe Sherburne (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) received the men's award, while lacrosse's Lauren McDonald (Catonsville, Md./Catonsville) earned the women's honor. Sherburne will graduate later this month with a degree in financial economics, while McDonald will earn her degree in environmental science.
Jamison finished her illustrious career for the Retrievers with her third consecutive America East All-Conference honor. The senior led the 2018 team with 65 points off 44 goals and 21 assists, pushing her into the top five into program history in each of the categories in career marks; she'll leave UMBC with 217 points (second) off 156 goals (third) and 61 assists (third). The midfielder also led the team with 46 ground balls, while also causing 26 turnovers.
Lyles capped off his time at UMBC with a momentous final season. He helped lead the Retrievers to their first NCAA tournament bid in 10 years with a last second three-pointer against Vermont in the America East title game, while also scoring 28 points in the team's history-making upset over No. 1 Virginia in the tournament. Lyles earned America East First Team honors after averaging 20.3 points per game this season, eclipsing the 1,600-point mark in just 81 career games.
Just named to the America East First Team prior to the league championships, Alexander is currently ranked in the top ten in program history with 209 hits, 139 runs, and 64 stolen bases, having only been caught stealing five times. She was tabbed to the America East First Team after her junior season where she ranked in the top five in the conference in stolen bases, base hits, and doubles. Alexander also earned All-Conference second team and All-Rookie team honors after she landed herself in the top 10 in the America East in batting average, on-base percentage, runs scored, hits, total bases, and stolen bases.
Castaldo earned America East All-Conference Third Team honors after her junior season, where she helped lead the Retrievers to their first postseason win over Fairfield in the WBI Tournament. This past year, Castaldo averaged a career-best 12.2 points a game and became the 20th Retriever to eclipse the 1,000-point mark. She leaves UMBC tied for second all-time in games played, fourth in minutes played, and sixth in three pointers made and free throw percentage. She also had the opportunity to attend the WBCA's "So You Want to Be a Coach" program in Columbus in March.
Hauck was an integral part of men's soccer's America East championship season in 2014, scoring the game-winning goal in the title game and earning Most Outstanding Player for the tournament. The defensive-minded midfielder earned America East All-Conference First and Second team honors during his tenure and has scored 11 career goals with 10 assists for 32 points. Of his 11 career goals, nine were either the game-tying or game winning score. This past season, Hauck tallied four goals, including the equalizer against No. 1 Maryland, and three assists, while helping the Retrievers return to the America East Tournament.
Trajkovic was named the CCSA Rookie of the Year in 2014-15 after he won a gold and two silver medals en route to helping the Retrievers win their first of three-straight CCSA titles. He won four individual titles at the ECAC Championships, including a silver in the 400 IM where he set a new school record. This year at the America East Championships, Trajkovic took home two gold medals and helped UMBC earn a gold in the 800 free relay, while being named the most outstanding senior athlete at the championships.
Sherburne has maintained a perfect 4.0 during his undergraduate career. The forward earned America East All-Academic and CoSIDA Academic All-District 2 First Team for two consecutive years. Sherburne also became the first UMBC and America East men's basketball player to earn Academic All-America® Division I Men's Basketball First Team honors. He became the 21st Retriever in program history to reach the 1,000-point on February 18.
Sherburne will compete as a graduate student in his final year of eligibility in 2018-19.
McDonald also earned America East All-Academic Team honors in two straight years, holding a 3.73 GPA in environmental science, while also earning spots on the America East Commissioner's Honor Roll. She was also the 2017-18 recipient of UMBC's Student Affairs Leadership Award. The attacker has amassed 113 career goals, breaking a 32-year-old program in 2017 with 62 in a season. She has also been named to the America East All-Conference second team twice in her career.
A number of special and team awards were presented during the evening. Here is the complete list:
Dr. Charles R. Brown Outstanding Athletes –Carolyn Jamison (F), Jairus Lyles (M)
Matt Skalsky Outstanding Scholar-Athletes – Lauren McDonald (F), Joe Sherburne (M)
Outstanding Female Seniors – Tori Alexander, Laura Castaldo
Outstanding Male Seniors – Gregg Hauck, Nikola Trajkovic
Leon Upshur Memorial Award – Dustin Roddy(Director, UMBC New Media Studio)
Grittys Award Winners:
Female Newcomer of the Year – Carmen Freeman (Memphis, Tenn.), volleyball
Male Newcomer of the Year – Daniel Akin (Eltham, England), men's basketball
Breakthrough Athlete of the Year – Valerie Hammett (Mechanicsville, Md./Chopticon)
Record Breaking Performance of the Year – Stephen Schoch (Laurel, Md./Appalachian State)
Home Event of the Year – Men's Soccer vs. #1 Maryland
Event of the Year – Men's Basketball "Shocks the World" by defeating #1 Virginia in NCAA Tournament
Play of the Year – "The Shot" Jairus Lyles's last-second three-pointer to claim America East title vs. Vermont
2017-18 UMBC Award Winners
Most Valuable Athlete: Gregg Hauck
Unsung Hero: Kyle Saunderson
Unsung Hero: Jon Bell
Most Valuable Athlete: Leah Roth
Unsung Hero: Gabby Boehmer
Most Improved Athlete: Meredith Webber
Most Valuable Athlete: Kristin Watson
Most Improved Athlete: Colleen Boarman
Unsung Hero: Krytsia Negron
Men's Cross Country
Most Valuable Athlete: Urgy Eado
Unsung Hero: Rhys Burgett
Unsung Hero: Nathan Nadal
Women's Cross Country
Most Valuable Athlete: Briana Roberts
Unsung Hero : Courtney Mattson
Most Improved Athlete: Kaya Knake
Most Valuable Athlete: Laura Castaldo
Unsung Hero: Carly Harris
Most Valuable Athlete: Brittani Burgess
Most Valuable Athlete: Jairus Lyles
Unsung Hero: Jourdan Grant
Most Improved Athlete: Daniel Akin
Women's Indoor Track
Most Valuable Athlete: Funmi Daramola
Most Improved Athlete: Kaya Knake
Unsung Hero: Tori Johnson
Men's Indoor Track
Most Valuable Athlete: Jamal Cody
Most Valuable Athlete: Russell Bowman
Most Improved Athlete: John Oputa
Men's Swimming & Diving
Most Valuable Athlete: Ilia Rattsev
Unsung Hero: Nikola Trajkovic
Most Valuable Athlete: Alexander Gliese
Women's Swimming & Diving
Most Valuable Athlete: Emily Vance
Most Valuable Athlete: Hania Moro
Unsung Hero: Laura Massicotte
Unsung Hero: Mallory Pollock
Unsung Hero: Shayna Rider
Unsung Hero: Jenna Stupey
Most Valuable Athlete: Jason Brewster
Most Improved Athlete: Danny Isaac
Unsung Hero: John Tornabene
Most Valuable Athlete: Carolyn Jamison
Unsung Hero: Caitlin Miller
Most Improved Athlete: Rachel Walchuck
Women's Outdoor Track & Field
Most Valuable Athlete: Kaya Knake
Most Valuable Athlete: Kelechi Nwanaga
Unsung Hero: Erin Patrice
Men's Outdoor Track & Field
Most Valuable Athlete: Jamal Cody
Most Valuable Athlete: Brian Nelson
Most Valuable Athlete: Tony White
Baseball awards have not been announced at this time.