Team spirit

Waiting for the meal to arrive at the Women's Athletic Association (WAA) awards banquet Tuesday evening in Ida Noyes, the student-athletes began to grumble a little. "Shouldn't the people who had practice today get served first?" one woman muttered. At the table next to her, another wanting faster food wished for McDonald's.

When everyone had finally been served with chicken and wild rice, WAA president Petra Wade, '07, began the ceremony honoring varsity women. Although the banquet recognized statistics, scores, and records, Wade said those things weren't what really mattered to her about Chicago sports. "The reason I play softball," she said, "is because of my team," eliciting cheers and "awww"s from the softball player's tables.

As the women picked at chocolate pastry deserts, coaches, WAA members, and alumni athletes announced the awards. Cross-country and track-and-field star Jackie Kropp, '07, won the Patricia R. Kirby Multi-Sport Athlete Award, given to the senior athlete who received the most varsity letter awards. Kropp had 11. Another star runner, Dilshanie Perera, '07, won the Mary Jean Mulvaney Scholar-Athlete award, given to the fourth-year athlete with the highest junior and senior grade point average. The Gertrude Dudley Medal, given to a senior athlete who demonstrated outstanding leadership and skill, went to pitcher Wade and basketball player Korry Schwanz, '07.

Between awards, the night's entertainment showed the team aspect of sports. Members of the track, volleyball, and soccer teams performed dances. The soccer players were the highlight, bringing out jumpropes to demonstrate their skills. Two jumped at once, another rolled under the ropes and leapt up to start jumping, and another did dance moves as she jumped.

Jenny Fisher, '07

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Photos (left to right): Wade gives the opening remarks; track athlete Nellie Movtchan, '07, listens to the awards; volleyball players show off their moves.

May 9, 2007