The University of Newcastle formally recognised the sporting excellence of its students at a special awards presentation this evening.
Kathryn Jankovic (Archery), Matthew Dun (Rugby Union), David Kennedy (Rugby Union), Margaret Watson (Rugby Union) and Kate Killen (Tennis) were awarded coveted University Blues for showing outstanding sporting ability when representing the University.
Mark Jones (Baseball), William O'Reilly (Rowing), Stephen Pfennigwerth (Rowing), Matthew Sharman (Rugby League) and Melanie Flynn (Women's Soccer) were named as University Colours for outstanding contribution to the administration and organisation of University sport.
Australian representative Rugby Union player, Margaret Watson, was named as the University of Newcastle Sports Person of the Year, an award that recognises outstanding sporting achievement by a University student.
The University of Newcastle Women's Hockey Club was named Sporting Club of the Year, recognising the attainment of high standards in sports administration by the Club.
Former University of Newcastle student, Paralympic gold medallist and world record holder, Heath Francis, was guest speaker at the prestigious event.
NUsport CEO, Samantha Martin-Williams, said the awards highlighted the on-going role NUsport and the University play in developing the sporting careers of their athletes.
'NUsport is proud of the achievements of our athletes. They encourage us to pursue even higher standards in our own performances and NUsport is delighted to have contributed to those successes,' she said.
Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Nick Saunders, said the University was proud to celebrate the outstanding sporting achievements of its students.
'With sport playing an integral role in university life, the University of Newcastle Sports Awards provides an opportunity to recognise success at a regional, national and international level,' he said.
Mark Jones [Colour - Baseball]
Mark has been a member of the University Baseball & Softball Club since 2003. He has coached second grade and been assistant coach for first grade. In 2004 Mark took on the role as the club's Head Coach and was the club's representative to the Newcastle Baseball Association.
In 2005 Mark instigated the pre-season working bee to restore the diamond in readiness for the start of each season. He continues to be one of the most active members of the Club.
William O'Reilly [Colour - Rowing]
Will was Club Coach in 1964 and Club Captain from 1965 to 1968.
He was a successful crew coach with wins in the Women's Coxed 4 Intervarsity 1967 and the Novice, Maiden and Open 4s at the State Rowing Regatta also in 1967.
In 1968 he coached the Women's Pairs & Sculls to win at the Women's Intervarsity. He coached the Women's Sculls (Winner) & Women's 4s (Second) in the 1968 NSW Rowing Championships.
Will was instrumental in organising the Mattara Festival Rowing Regatta in 1967 after a 60 year hiatus. He was the Convenor of the 1968 Intervarsity Women's Rowing hosted by the Boat Club at Raymond Terrace.
Stephen Pfennigwerth [Colour - Rowing]
Stephen joined the Boat Club in 2005. In 2006 he was elected Club Treasurer where he worked to combat the significant drop in funding due to Voluntary Student Unionism. Steve was President in 2007 and 2008 and has been involved in boat maintenance, coaching of novice rowers, working bees and representing the club at NUsport and Central District Rowing Association meetings.
Steve initiated a development plan for novices and succession planning for the committee. He was integral in developing a website to enable the club to streamline administrative tasks and was appointed Team Manager for the 2008 Australian University Championships at Penrith.
Mathew Sharman [Colour - Rugby League]
Mat joined the Rugby League Club in 1994 and was appointed player/coach in 1994 and in 1995 steered the team to the minor premiership and grand final in the NSW Tertiary Rugby League competition. In 2000, Mat coached the First Grade side to victory and in 2007 and 2008 was President, assistant coach and club registrar. Mat was involved in coaching the NSW Tertiary Students Representative side and was appointed Head Coach. Mat was invited to tour the UK in 2007 as assistant coach of the Australian Students Rep Team. He led an overhaul of the committee structure which improved club operations and the club ended the 2007 season with a larger membership and greater financial security.
Melanie Flynn [Colour - Women's Soccer]
Mel joined the Women's Soccer Club in 1997, was Vice-President from 2003-2005 and has been Club President since 2006. In 2005, she took on the role of C grade coach while coordinating multiple fundraising drives to improve the club's financial security.
Mel has organised trial matches, liaised with other clubs, booked fields and has filled the position of club communication officer. She has worked to improve club spirit through social events and her input was instrumental in expanding the club and consolidating its financial position.
Kathryn Jankovic [Blue - Archery]
Kathryn has been a member of the NSW Open State Archery Team since 2006 and represented NSW at the National Archery Championships each year. Kathryn represented Australian Universities in the 2008 World University Archery Championships in Chinese Taipei, placing fifth in the Women's Compound Division. In 2007, Kathryn assisted the University's Archery Club register with NSW Archery. She has just returned from Belgrade, Serbia after representing Australia at the 2009 World University Summer Games.
Matthew Dun [Blue - Rugby]
Matthew has been a regular member of the University Rugby Club First XV since joining in 2005 and has played for the club when not required for representative fixtures. He was a member of the Newcastle & Hunter Rugby Union Senior team in 2007 and 2008 when it won the NSW Country Championships. In 2007, Matthew was named in the NSW Country Cockatoos Squad and he was selected in the winning NSW Country Cockatoos Rugby Union Representative Team in 2008.
David Kennedy [Blue - Rugby]
He has been a member of the University Rugby Club since 2005 and represented the University at the 2005 Australian University Games and the 2006 Eastern University Games. In 2008 he was a member of the University First XV team which were finalists in the Newcastle & Hunter Rugby Competition and he was also a member of the Newcastle & Hunter Rugby Union Senior Men's team which won the NSW Country Championships. He was selected in the NSW Country Rugby Union Team which won the 2008 Australian Rugby Shield.
Kate Killen [Blue - Tennis]
She represented the University at the Australian University Games in 2007 and 2008.
Kate was the University Tennis Team's number one female player and was selected in the AUG Green & Gold Tennis team in both years. In 2008, Kate won the special women's singles at the Newcastle Open, the open women's singles at the Raymond Terrace Easter Open and the open women's doubles at the Gloucester Open.
In 2007 and 2008, Kate was an assistant tennis coach with the Hunter Academy of Sport and was a recipient of a University of Newcastle Sports Scholarship.
Margaret Watson [Blue - Rugby and Sports Person of the Year]
Margaret joined the Rugby Club when she commenced studies and was selected in the Newcastle Women's Rugby Union Hunter A Development Squad in 2008.
Margaret was a member of the successful University of Newcastle Women's Rugby team which won gold at the 2005 Eastern University Games and the 2005 Australian University Games. She was selected in the EUG Merit Team and in the AUG Green & Gold Team for Women's Rugby. In 2008, Margaret was selected in the NSW Country Squad and in the Australian Women's Rugby Union Training Squad. She represented Australia in two test matches against New Zealand in 2008.
The University of Newcastle Women's Hockey Club [Sports Club of the Year]
The Women's Hockey Club had an extremely successful year last season.
Five of the Club's six teams featured in the finals series of their respective competitions. This included the minor premiership and grand final appearance for the Premier League team, major premiership for the Second Grade team and a grand final appearance for the Third Grade side. The Club was well represented at both the East Coast Challenge and the Australian University Games in Melbourne.
The Club was also recognised as a finalist in last year's University of Newcastle Sports Awards.