PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Plymouth State College presented its annual “Panther Awards” for the six winter sports recently in the Hartman Union Building on campus.
Six seniors wrap up their careers while one freshman sparkles with the prestigious award, which is given to the student-athletes who best represent their respective teams. JaModi Robinson (Framingham, MA) captured the men’s basketball award while guard Jennifer Pelletier (Derry, NH), the lone freshman in the group was honored for women’s basketball. Other winners were Meaghan Buckley (Haverhill, MA) from the women’s swimming and diving team, Ben Baker (Gardiner, ME) of the wrestling team, Eric Ryan (North Chelmsford, MA) of the ice hockey team, and Dave Chandler (Holden, MA) and Courtney Cote (Gilford, NH) from the men’s and women’s ski teams.
Following each sports season the Panther awards are presented to the individuals who best represent Plymouth State on and off the field of competition. Each of PSC’s 18 teams sets its own criteria for the award.
JaModi Robinson ranked among the top five Panthers in scoring for the past three years. The tri-captain showed his most impressive numbers this season, starting 24 of PSC’s 25 games and averaging 9.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 2.8 assists per outing. The 5’10” guard contributed three straight winning seasons.
If you followed the women’s basketball team this season, you probably couldn’t miss this freshman sensation. Jennifer Pelletier came out of Pinkerton Academy providing the team with a lift that took them to their third post-season appearance in school history. The 5’4” guard led the squad in assists (3.1 per game), steals (2.3 per game), minutes played, and free throw shooting percentage, while posting 8.1 points per game. Pelletier was also a member of the LEC All-Tournament team for her outstanding play.
A three-year captain of the Panther ice hockey team, Eric Ryan capped an excellent career with his second Panther Award (he was the recipient in 1997-98). He became the fifth player in school history to reach to 100-point milestone on Jan. 26th, and finished his career with 48 goals and 57 assists for 105 points. Ryan finished this season third on the team in scoring with six goals and eight assists, and he showed his dedication and commitment when played the last two weeks of the season with a broken wrist.
Meaghan Buckley was the leader of the Panthers swim team this season. The senior captain was unbeaten in the 100 during the regular season and captured 25 of 27 freestyle races. She finished in the top nine in three individual events at this year’s New Englands – fifth in the 100 free, seventh in the 50 free, and ninth in the 200 free. Although Buckley is saying her farewell to Plymouth, she leaves with her records that may be here for a while. She owns the school record in the 100 and 200 free with times of 53.80 and 1:58.93.
Ben Baker was the driving force of the wrestling team this season. The captain finished the season with his second straight NCAA Tournament appearance, which he earned by finishing third in his weight class (174) at the New England Championships. He was the team leader with 30 wins (30-8 overall) and 12 pins. Baker concludes his collegiate career with an impressive 82-39 mark.
Dave Chandler contributed over his four-year stay to some of the best ski teams PSC has ever seen. The Panthers tied a school record four straight years of first place finishes during the Eastern Regionals, while this season at the nationals they found themselves one place shy of a national championship. Chandler, the men’s team co-captain, found his best finishes of the season at 19th place.
Courtney Cote was part of a team that registered two straight second place finishes in the Eastern Regionals. This season the team finished 5th out of 19 teams in the USCSA Nationals. Cote saw her finest season this year with 13 total races. She helped the team place fourth in the nation in the giant slalom with a 41st place individual finish.