Friday, June 12, 2009

FOV Cavalier of the Year, #9/#10




Mind: fried. Blogging: not easy. I was afraid of this - that I'd make a promise my nerves can't keep. The last hockey game of the year is TONIGHT and naturally, I didn't do anything at work today that could be mistaken for anything "productive" or "useful." For the sake of my sanity, pray for a Red Wings victory tonight, otherwise I will probably spend what should be a pretty exciting weekend for a UVA fan in a listless, life-is-meaningless fog. I don't even want to think about what happens if the Wings lose.

Anyway, blurb, and post.

The official From Old Virginia Birthday is June 10, at which time this blog marks its first year of publication. For the birthday celebration, we - that is, me, and you the readers - will name the FOV Cavalier of the Year. My job is to pick the twelve finalists and write a few words about each that tell you all about their accomplishments. Your job is easier: to vote in the poll that will run once all twelve are finished.

Two of the finalists will be highlighted each day this week, through Saturday. They're in random order with no rhyme or reason implied or intended. Today: Blair Weymouth and Yemi Ayeni.

Blair Weymouth - Women's lacrosse - Midfielder

Team accomplishments:

- 11-7 record
- First round of NCAA tournament

Personal accomplishments:

- Tewaaraton Trophy finalist
- Second-team IWCLA All-American
- Earned All-America honors four years in a row
- First team All-ACC
- Led team with 51 goals

Weymouth didn't actually lead her team in overall points as Danny Glading did - that honor went to Ashley McCullough - but DUDE: 51 goals. That's practically averaging a hat trick every game. And in fewer games than the men played. If that number doesn't impress the hell out of you, then I'm sorry, but you're dead.

The women, actually, did not enjoy the kind of success the men had. To be perfectly fair, though, all but one loss was to a team ranked in the top ten, including a heartbreaker against #1 Northwestern. But back to Blair Weymouth for a second here. The best women's lacrosse player ever at UVA? Maybe. Amy Appelt might have something to say, but she'd be the only one, and that's like saying, no, Sean Singletary wasn't the best basketball player, what about Ralph Sampson? Her list of accomplishments up there is impressive, but even more so when you realize she picked up most of that stuff every year she was here. 51 goals isn't even a career high. Her placement on the list of finalists here is justified enough for this year's achievements, but it wouldn't be out of line to vote for her as a sort of lifetime achievement award.

Yemi Ayeni - Men's track & field - Throws

Team accomplishments:

- Co-ACC champions (outdoor, which is what matters)

Personal accomplishments:

- Broke his own school record in shot put with 59' 9.75"
- Won discus titles at Penn Relays, ECAC/IC4A championships, and NCAA regionals
- Set ECAC/IC4A meet record at discus with 196' 7"
- Three-time All-American in discus
- Three-time ACC champion in discus
- Currently second place at NCAA championships in discus

I'm probably a little early writing this - like Danny Hultzen, Yemi Ayeni isn't done yet. He's made for himself a stellar career at UVA by being really, really good at chucking heavy objects great distances, specifically the discus, and as all those titles and records attest, is now better than anyone else this side of the Rockies at doing it, at least at the collegiate level. He stands second place in the discus throws at the NCAAs (a guy from Berkeley is first) and finishes up tomorrow. Frankly, this is also a little bit of a lifetime achievement nomination, but when the guy's been killing the competition for so long, why not? And I totally reserve the right to edit this if Ayeni brings home a national championship tomorrow.

No comments: