The Lafayette presents… All-Leopard Sporting Awards

The Lafayette presents... All-Leopard Sporting Awards

Jason Shavel

 

The 2014-2015 school year has been one of the most exciting in Lafayette’s history, highlighted by a historic 150th Lafayette-Lehigh football game and a trip to the NCAA Tournament for the men’s basketball team. It’s time to look back on the best performances of the year.

Male Athlete of the Year: Senior Ross Scheuerman (Football, Tailback)

When Scheuerman signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday, it capped a memorable season for the running back. Garnering First Team All Patriot League honors, Scheuerman was invited to compete in the NFL Combine in April to showcase his talent to NFL scouts amongst the best talent in the country. And his invitation could not be more deserved. Ross had a stellar year, piling on nearly 1200 yards rushing and 12 TDs. He added another 500 receiving yards and three more touchdowns. He capped off his year with a 300-yard, three-touchdown performance in Yankee Stadium as the Lafayette Football defeated Lehigh during their 150th meeting.

Senior Ross Scheuerman breaks free of a Lehigh defender out of the backfield. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Senior Ross Scheuerman breaks free of a Lehigh defender out of the backfield. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Best Female Athlete: Senior Emily Homan (Women’s Basketball, Forward)

Homan earned First Team All Patriot League honors. A stat line of 16 PPG, eight RPG and an assist show just how big of an impact she made on the floor. Even more impressive is that Homan scored in double figures for 28 straight games, dating from the season opener until Feb. 21 against Lehigh. Her best game came in a tightly contested home win against Penn when she dropped 29 points and added three blocks, a steal and a season high three assists.

Senior Emily Homan anticipates a jump ball against the Loyola Greyhounds. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Senior Emily Homan anticipates a jump ball against the Loyola Greyhounds. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Rookie of the Year: Freshman Art Griffin (Golf)

In his rookie campaign, Griffin claimed two individual titles at the Bucknell Invitational in the fall and the Finegan Invitational in the spring. In the Patriot League Championships, he shot a three round total of 217 (+1) and finished tied for third place individually. His play led the Leopards to a third place team finish. He was honored with First Team All Patriot League Honors. In the last two years, he even overcame multiple stress fractures in his back, making it even more impressive that he has competed at such a high level this year.

Coach of the Year: Fran O’ Hanlon (Men’s Basketball)

Coach O’ Hanlon led the men’s basketball team to its first Patriot League Championship in 15 years. In the regular season, he coached the team to finish fourth in the Patriot League, but led the team through Boston University, top-seeded Bucknell and American in the Patriot League playoffs. Lafayette led the league in field goal percentage, PPG, free throw percentage and three-point field goal percentage.

“His guidance of our leaders from this year is solely what allowed us to achieve as much as we did this year,” junior Billy Murphy said.

Coach O’Hanlon on the sidelines against American in the Patriot League Championship game. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Coach O’Hanlon on the sidelines against American in the Patriot League Championship game. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Game of the Year: Men’s Basketball – Lafayette vs. American University for the Patriot League Championship

Despite the drama, Lafayette claimed the Patriot League Championship and a bid to the NCAA Tournament. Lafayette shot 65 percent from the field and overcame a late second half run by American to close the game out with fundamental basketball. Sophomore Nick Lindner and senior Seth Hinrichs scored 25 and 16 points respectively. The defense did a great job holding American’s best player, Pee Wee Gardner, to just 13 points. The team finished an unlikely run through the Patriot League tournament and secured their first NCAA tournament birth since 2000.

“It was thrilling,” sophomore super fan John Walker said. “The storming of the court, the electric vibe of Kirby, the underdog story. It’s what you dream of when you think of college sports.”

Nick Lindner drives to the basket against American. He went on to score 25 points and win Tournament MVP. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Nick Lindner drives to the basket against American. He went on to score 25 points and win Tournament MVP. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Play of the Year: Jamie O’ Hare’s Go-Ahead Layup vs. Colgate

There were 25 seconds on the clock. Junior Jamie O’Hare was inbounding the ball under her own net. With the defender faced away from her, O’Hare forewent the play call and did something surprising. She threw the ball off the defender’s back, grabbed it with one hand, hit a backwards layup and jogged down the court as if that’s how the play was drawn up. The bucket was the go-ahead shot in a 58-56 win over Colgate. Even though the season is over, the play will live on forever on Lil’ Wayne’s Facebook wall.

Junior Jamie O’Hare dribbles around her back against a Loyola defender. [Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]
Junior Jamie O’Hare dribbles around her back against a Loyola defender.
[Photo By Hana Isihara ‘17]