Athletes and Coaches Star in York ESPYS Awards Ceremony

Photo Credit: Adisa Sobers


By Richard Heaton

On the second day of finals, athletes and coaches alike from York College’s 17 teams gathered in the Health and Physical Education Complex for one last celebration and to close out the 2018-2019 school year on a high note.

It was a celebration of success. Dozens of awards were given out to players and coaches for various accomplishments from both the fall and spring seasons.

After opening remarks and the first batch of awards, there was a break for dinner. Everyone in attendance was treated to a catered meal of swedish meatballs, macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, and more.

Following dinner began the bulk of the ceremony. For each team, an award was given for newcomer of the year, most outstanding athlete, and the coaches award. Following these awards, the sportsmanship and all-star awards were given out. More than 75 awards were given out in this part alone.

Following a brief break for dessert, it was time for the major awards. Geraldine Guess, of the women’s soccer, swimming, tennis, and track and field teams won female newcomer of the year. Devine Chisholm of men’s basketball won male newcomer of the year

Nicole Ovelheira and Dammon Trimmingham won career awards while Argenis Contreras Sanabria won the I am a cardinal award.

The coach of the year was Anastasia Bitis and the men’s basketball team won team of the year. The student athlete of the year winners were Mac-Dege Dessourees and Rohan Burrell Jr.

One of the big winners of the night was Keshawn Ross, a sophomore from Queens, New York. The men’s track and field star won five different awards throughout the evening, including a coaches award, a sportsmanship award, and a City University of New York Athletic Conference all-star award.

After winning his first award of the night, Ross talked about his history of winning, that he won a sportsmanship during his freshman year. When asked about his biggest challenge coming into his sophomore campaign, Ross responded “Coming back into the season I was determined to get back in shape and participate and help my team.”

His determination and hard work really paid off this year if his following four awards were any indication.

Another highlight of the evening was a fellow teammate of Ross, Adedayo Epemolu. In addition to track and field, Epemolu also played soccer, where he won a coaches award. The other award that he won was also the first of the evening, the scholar-athlete of the year.

He won that award by finishing the year with an impressive 3.915 GPA as an Economics major.

When asked about how he manages school and the athletes’ life, Epemolu says it’s all about time management.

“Every day I set out my goal for the day, I try to do as much as possible,” he said. “Sometimes I have hiccups, and those times I have to make up for the loss in the day.”

Not only does Epemolu want to help bring back the “glory days” of York during his time here, he also wants to dominate the education scene and go after his master’s degree.

The evening wasn’t all about sports though. One of the first awards given out were the recognition awards, which included a diverse list of winners from all areas of the campus. Winners included Marcia Moxam Comrie from the office of communication, Glen Roew from building and grounds, and Dr. Jay Choi from the counseling center, among others.

Nearly four hours later, after the last of the awards have been dished out, it was time for Denee’ Baracato, director of athletics, to give her closing remarks. Throughout her speech, she tried her best to inspire each of the athletes present, both newcomers and those leaving York.

“Don’t let anyone tell you anything differently,” she said.  “You all are the light that shines on this campus. You all are the ambassadors of York College. You all are the most visible students on this campus. Be proud of that, shine bright every single day, and do not forget that.”

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