April 18, 2013: The Memphis Tigers met at the Variety Club for their end of the year banquet, awards dinner and annual meeting. The evening was a fabulous fun filled event with the All Blacks playing on the big screen, a
nice classic bar to mingle around, and lots of ladies in their finery. Following a delicious buffet dinner catered by Mrs. Carolyn Montfort, the awards began.
The team thanked their officers for leading them through the past year. Jay MacDonnchadh was paid tribute for his service as president. Adam Hairston was honored for his service as secretary and Josh Campbell was also thanked for his service as treasurer. The officers were provided an engraved crystal to remember their time in service to the Memphis RFC.
Players earning their club badge during 2012-2013 were honored. In order to earn the club badge, players must:
- be a student at the U of M
- be a member of Memphis Rugby Club for a full year and have fulfilled your responsibilities with the club such as dues payment and fulfillment of committee responsibilities
- have demonstrated commitment to the club by actively participating in practices and games as assigned
The following players (and coaches) earned their club badge for their commitment to the Tigers for academic year 2012-2013:
- August Myers
- Brandon Worley
- Cameron Walton
- Chris Lemons
- Eric Ofinowicz
- Freddy Hodges
- Ian Curry
- JC Russell
- Jamie Perry
- John Elmore
- Kasra Koleini
- Tezman Mosley
- Thomas Strickland
- Tre Copeland
- Tyler Mann
- Coach Swatzyna
- Coach Mimms
- Coach Cole
Team awards were then presented by Coach Cole and Coach Swatzyna. The awards were voted on by the players in a blind ballot over the previous two weeks. The players voted on each award for the past academic year and
there were plenty of nominations for each position. The balloting was tough, but as last year, it seems that the cream rises to the top.
The Tiger Scratch award is to recognize the player who was most beat up during the season. It was apparent by the voting that the players also wanted to award someone who gave as much as he got. The players aptly chose August Myers Stevens for the Tiger Scratch Award.
There was excellent forward play this year and several pack members distinguished themselves. This was a tough vote but it was clear that the team recognized the mental toughness and physical power and commitment of this individual. Jonathan Bauer was honored as the 2012-2013 best forward.
This year’s best back scored the most points of all players with 24 points in the spring season alone, led his backline with excellence and was a captain several times during the year. It was a pleasure to again pass the award to
Phil Elliott for his excellent play through the year.
This year’s MVP is one of the toughest, nicest, most focused, most passionate and disciplined players on the club. He is tough to bring down and has a knack for stealing the ball. He tends to zig and zag a bit, which makes him hard to support, but he’ll hold the ball until you get there. He is a honor to coach and a thrill to watch play. The 2012-2013 MVP award went to Josiah Shipley.
To make this award even more special, Joshua Campbell’s parents (Bob and Anne Campbell) have provided an award called the All Black Tiger award for the MVP to have in his possession through the year. A plaque designating the recipients of each MVP will be posted at the clubhouse for all to enjoy.
Finally, several players served as captains during the 2012-2013 year and they were provided a certificate memorializing their contribution as captains. Those serving as captains were:
- Kian Koleini
- Phil Elliott
- Scott Smith
- Adam Hairston
- Segen Marais.
Next the graduating seniors were recognized. Seniors were provided the “never empty” mug that will never run dry when they bring it to club events. Also they were provided a plaque signifying their contributions along with the Book of Man, signed by all players. Jay MacDonnchadh, Freddy Hodges and Segen Marais were so honored.
Election of Officers
The day ended with an election of officers for the 2013-2014 academic year. The elections were as follows:
- Adam Hairston – President
- Jonathan Bauer – Secretary
- Tyler Mann – Treasurer
The night ended with Coach Cole casting thanking the players for a job well done through a tough year. We competed at a very high level and had accomplished a significant amount. With a first place finish at the Ozark Tournament and strong competition in the SIRC, the Tigers showed that we were for real. He stated that coaching will continue to stress the following five key qualities: integrity, courage, poise, class, and leadership. The players certainly demonstrated those qualities through the past year.
Here area some other pics of the event: