We are attracting elite players from across the southeast, so our basketball, football, hockey, netball, and rugby academies go from strength to strength Deputy principal Steve Martell
The winners of the annual Collyer’s Sports Awards have been recognised for their 2022/23 achievements. There was much to celebrate, with each sport awarding respective ‘Player of the Year’ and ‘Most Improved Player’ awards.
Head of Collyer’s Sport Academy John Burroughs, who hosted the event, said: “The prize winners demonstrated great teamwork, commitment to training, leadership and developing skills in their chosen sport.”
The Most Improved Player (MIP) for men’s basketball went to James Byrne, while Maka Chiware was delighted to pick up the Player of the Year (POY) award for the second year running. In women’s football the POY went to Izzy Smith, with MIP prize won by Grace Hapgood. In men’s football, first team POY was awarded to Luke Harrison, with the MIP prize won by Danny White. The men’s football “Golds” prize for POY was picked up by Leander Laue, with Charlie Burt winning the MIP prize. The hockey MIP award went to Sophie Killick, with POY to Isaac Shannon. Vicky Azeke-Omokaro completed a unique double, as having won second team player of the year last year, she won the first team award this year! Ellie Best walked away with the POY for this year’s second team netball prize; MIP women’s netball awards went to Grace Hanger (first team) and Stacey Manso (second team).
The women’s rugby POY award went to Freya Bell, while Trudie Jones picked up the MIP award. The men’s rugby MIP award went to Brandon Marx, while Ellis Beynon was delighted to win the POY prize.
For outstanding cross country running achievements, the award for Individual Sports Person of the Year went to Joe Van Nes. To wild celebrations, Collyer’s women’s football team were then crowned Team of the Year. Students who completed the HSLA (Higher Sports Leadership Award) were also commended during the ceremony.
The Mia Craen Outstanding Contribution to Sport was awarded to Izzy Smith. John Burroughs said: “It is fitting that this award, in memory of Mia Craen and kindly donated by her family, recognises an athlete who has worked extremely hard and motivated team mates so brilliantly throughout the season.”
Izzy Smith said: “I feel honoured and grateful to receive the Mia Craen award. It has been an amazing 2 years at Collyer’s and the sport has always been my highlight!
“Special thanks to Brannon our amazing coach, and the girls football team for voting me as player of the season. As captain of the team, I am extremely proud that we achieved the College Team of the Year award and we won our league, especially as we didn’t have enough players for a team last year! Also, a massive thank you to John Burroughs for providing loads of fantastic sport leadership opportunities in the Higher Sports Leaders Course.”
John Burroughs said: “Congratulations to all the students and their brilliant teachers and coaches on a very good season. We have a golden generation coming through, and hope that our sporting successes can continue when the new season starts.
“Overall, Collyer’s played over 150 fixtures this season at the U18 competitive age group, and this would not have been possible without a dedicated team of coaches, administrative staff, drivers, and officials.
“Huge thanks also to Kelly Howell, for her excellent organisational work.”
Collyer’s Vice Principal (Pastoral) Andrea John said: “John Burroughs and the team should be commended for doing such an incredible job widening the participation of sport at Collyer’s.”
Deputy principal Steve Martell, who presented the prizes, said: “We are attracting elite players from across the southeast, so our basketball, football, hockey, netball, and rugby academies go from strength to strength.”
Principal Dan Lodge said: “These students are incredible athletes, and we are hugely proud of their achievements this season.”