Wall of Fame 2015 Inductees
Female Junior Athlete of the Year
Jacqueline Lew – Wrestling
At the age of 15, Jacqueline demonstrated a firm grasp on her sport. The teen wrestler thrived in 2015, winning the provincial 47kg high school title as well as the Most Outstanding wrestler of the meet award. She also collected gold at the Ontario Cup, Western Canada Games, the Cadet national championships and a Pan Am silver. Jacqueline is also a key member of the national cadet wrestling team.
Male Junior Athlete of the Year
Dante Fabbro – Hockey
A highly ranked player for this month’s NHL Entry Draft, the skilled blue liner set a course for his future with a stellar rookie season last year with the Penticton Vees of the B.C. Hockey League. At 16 he was voted the top defenseman at the national Royal Bank Cup Junior A hockey championships and a finalist for Canadian Junior Hockey League’s rookie of the year in 2014-15. To go along with a certain first-round selection in the NHL draft, Dante heads off for Boston University for the next stage in his hockey journey.
Female High School Athlete of the Year
Chanell Botsis – Track and Field
Chanell is no stranger to these walls, having been celebrated before. In 2015 the Dr. Charles Best track and field star took another step up the ladder with standout showings in both hammer throw and discus, topping both as a Grade 11 at the BC high school track and field championships. Chanell set a personal best at the event, and used it as a springboard to being named to Canada’s team that competed at the World Youth championships in Colombia. Before she heads off to the University of Connecticut, let’s congratulate Chanell on a great year, with more to come.
Male High School Athlete of the Year
Henry Lee – Golf
With a club in his hand, Gleneagle Secondary’s Henry Lee displayed a Jason Day-like desire to win. The then-16-year-old dominated on the golf course, delivering the best individual score while leading his school team to the B.C. Triple-A championship title. Lee shot rounds of 67 and 69 to finish six-under par in Port Alberni to win by three strokes. At the Canadian junior boys championships, he finished tied for third overall, placed second at the CN Future Links Pacific tour and was 11th at the B.C. Amateur junior championships. He may have a green jacket in his future, but right now he’s our High School male Wall of Fame recipient.
Female University Athletes of the Year
Nikki Cornwall – Volleyball
Most athletes face obstacles and adversity, but Nikki Cornwall provided a prime example on how to turn a bad break into a glorious opportunity. The setter with Trinity Western University’s women’s volleyball team, Nikki began the 2014-15 season with a serious ankle injury that sidelined her for much of the year. The multi-sport athlete recovered and rehabbed just in time to reclaim her starting spot for the playoffs and led her team to its first-ever Canadian Interuniversity Sports title. The 19-year-old dominated on the court at the national tournament, including the final which saw TWU beat Alberta 3-2 after surrendering the first two games. For her performance, Nikki was voted the CIS tourney’s MVP. It’s fitting that we honor her 2015 stand-out season as our female University Wall of Fame honoree. Congratulations Nikki!
Male University Athletes of the Year
Wes Berg – Field Lacrosse
There’s a championship in the centre of Wesley Berg’s incredible 2015 season as well. The lacrosse standout entered his senior season at the University of Denver with high expectations, and proceeded to deliver on all of them. The team captain carried the Pioneers past favoured Maryland 10-5, scoring four goals – including the team’s first three – as Denver became the first men’s field lacrosse team outside of the eastern time zone to capture the NCAA crown. A Tewaaraton Award finalist, Wes was the championship MVP, a USILA second team All-American, NCAA All-Tournament team selection and the Big East Conference Attackman of the year. He capped his final season in college by scoring a senior school mark of 58 goals and setting Denver career highs in goals (188) and points (255).
Female Senior Athlete of the Year
Jasmin Glaesser – Cycling
Jasmin is training at the National Cycling Centre with her team mates in preparation for the games this summer. The 22-year-old cyclist established a clear trajectory skywards in 2015, winning four medals at the Pan Am Games in Toronto – including gold in the road race and track team pursuit, and silver in time trial and omnium. At the 2015 Canadian Road cycling championships she pedaled her way to a silver in elite women’s time trials. At the UCI world track racing championships, this Olympic bronze medalist – won in London, – finished third in team pursuit and placed sixth in individual pursuit. In two months’ time we project she’ll continue that pursuit as a member of the Canadian Olympic team in Rio.
Male Senior Athlete of the Year
Corey Mackin – Hockey
Although he hails from Philadelphia, that city of brotherly love, Corey Mackin made Coquitlam his home for two seasons with the Coquitlam Express. And home it was, as the 20-year-old dominated the BC Hockey League. In the 2014-15 season he torched opposing defenses with 50 goals in 58 games and won the Brett Hull Trophy as the league’s scoring champ. He was voted the league’s MVP, a first-team all-star and runner-up as Most Sportsmanlike. He capped that year by skating off with the Canadian Junior Hockey League’s national player of the year. He just finished his freshman year with Ferris State University as a NCAA quarterfinalist.
Masters Athlete of the Year
Elaine Whidden – Track and Field
Hitting the golden years sometimes means gold in medals, too. Coquitlam’s Elaine Whidden made her return to the track count after years away. The 60-year-old sprinter made up for lost time in 2015, setting two new masters racing times at the Trevor Craven Memorial meet in the 100- and 200-metre women’s events. Her 100m time of 14.60 seconds bested a record set by a Canadian Masters Athletics Hall of Fame member, and she repeated the feat in the 200. As the anchor, Elaine would also put the finishing touch on another record, this time the Canadian women’s 60-plus 4x400m relay. The quartet of Tri-City Greyhounds runners knocked 27 seconds off the old standard at a meet in Surrey.
Coach of the Year
Alfonso Napoletano – Soccer
We look to the accomplishments of the Dr. Charles Best senior girl’s soccer team and call up coach Alfonso Napoletano. This group came together from a background of various club soccer programs, of different grades and skills. Helping bring them together as a unit through a short season of spring soccer was coach Alfonso. His dedication helped keep the girls on the path to perfection, ending in a school first that each player will be able to look back on and share over the years. Through it all, coach Alfonso provided guidance and his passion for teaching the beautiful game.
Volunteer of the Year
James Abbott – Lacrosse
In the category of Volunteer of the Year, which doesn’t only acknowledge a 12-month period but a long term of involvement, the community is the big winner due to the efforts and hours turned in by people like James Abbott. While he carried all the big titles in Coquitlam minor lacrosse and junior lacrosse associations, James was just as likely to roll up his sleeves at any level and work with a great group of fellow volunteers to make those programs better. The end result of his years of dedication and service saw Coquitlam not only pile up medals and on-floor victories at provincial and national levels, but most importantly create an environment where kids could pursue their dreams and share the happiness of just playing like kids.
Disabled Athlete of the Year
Katie Little – Snowshoeing
Katie Little rose to the top of the pack in the Special Olympics sport of snowshoeing. At the Special Olympics Provincial Winter Games, Katie won three individual titles – topping the women’s 400m, the 800m and the 1600m. She was also the driving force in a first place result in the relay. She continually made better times during the season, setting the groundwork as she emerged from among a field of 48 athletes with four gold medals. Katie is still making tracks this year up the charts en route to the Canada Special Olympics Winter Games.
Team of the Year
Dr. Charles Best Blue Devils Senior girls soccer team
United with a common cause and all wearing the word ‘Desire’ written on their arms, Best peaked at the proper time. The 24 ladies were excellent on the pitch, demonstrating great chemistry and determination all the way to the B.C. Triple-A championship, where they knocked off Fleetwood Park 2-1 in overtime. The victory and provincial banner wrapped up an amazing season for Best, who became the first girls team in the school’s history – but certainly not the last – to claim BC gold.
Gleneagle Golf team
On the golf course, this team of five snappy clubbers began 2015 hunting a second BC Triple-A title for Gleneagle. Unflappable and unstoppable, that’s exactly what the squad did, capturing the provincial crown by an amazing 18 strokes over runner-up Elgin Park. Led by BC individual champion Henry Lee, who shot rounds of 67 and 69 to finish six-under, winning the title by three shots, Gleneagle was in control from the opening round. Gleneagle’s lineup, which included captain Riley Baynton, A.J. Ewart, Isaac Lee and Grade 8 prodigy Euna Han, never wavered under the pressure. Twelve year old Han would top the girls individual division with rounds of 73 and 75.