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GNAC Announces Inaugural Outdoor Track & Field Major Award Winners



WINTHROP, Mass. – The Great Northeast Athletic Conference is pleased to announce its inaugural Athletes of the Year in outdoor track & field, as the GNAC hosted is first-ever outdoor championship event on April 29 at Regis (Mass.).

The conference's major award winners were selected by the league's head coaches. Each event winner at the championships was automatically named  to the 2018 GNAC All-Conference team.

Regis junior Fatima St. Hilaire (Danvers, Mass.) was voted both the GNAC Women's Track Athlete of the Year and the GNAC Women's Field Athlete of the Year, it was announced on Friday. She collected both major awards after first-place finishes at GNACs in both the 4x100 and the 4x400. She was also second in the 100 meter dash (13.25) and third in the 400 meter dash (1:03.35), and won the women's long jump (5.26m) and triple jump (11.42m) events nearly two weeks ago. 

Also from Regis, junior Daniel LaFlamme (Watertown, Conn.) was a unanimous choice by the conference's head coaches for the 2018 GNAC Men's Field Athlete of the Year award. The 6-2 thrower placed first in the shotput (13.08m), second in the discus (36.93m), third in the hammer throw (37.55m), and fourth in the javelin (36.96m). 

Emmanuel College (Mass.) senior Francisco Tavares (Boston, Mass.) was selected as the 2018 GNAC Men's Track Athlete of the Year after winning the 200 meters (23.12) and placing second in the 400 meters (51.17) at the GNAC Championship. He also led the Saints to first place in the 4x400 meter relay.

Emmanuel freshman John Cavanaugh (Redding, Conn.) and Regis freshman Abby Flaherty (Millbury, Mass.) received the GNAC's Track Rookie of the Year accolades. Cavanaugh was a unanimous choice after placing second in both the 100 meter hurdles (17.07) and the 400 meter hurdles (1:03.41) and also contributed on the Saints' winning 4x400 team. Meanwhile, Flaherty was second in the 400 meters (1:01.35) and was a member of the Pride's 4x400 winning relay foursome. 

Saint Joseph's College of Maine collected both of the 2018 GNAC Field Rookie of the Year awards, as freshman Noah Hutchinson (Southwest Harbor, Maine) and Emma Belyea (Caribou, Maine) took home the hardware. Hutchinson took first place in the high jump (1.84m) at the GNACs and posted a 1.91m leap at New Englands. Also at GNACs, he had a pair of third-place finishes in both hurdles events. Belyea, who was a unanimous choice for the award by the league's head coaches, placed first in the pole vault (1.65m), second in the javelin throw (26.12m), and eighth in both the discus and hammer throws at the GNAC Championship. 

Regis (Mass.) second-year head coach Kourtney Bonsey was voted voth the GNAC Men's and Women's Coach of the Year by her peers after guiding the Pride to a sweep of the team titles at the GNAC Championships. Bonsey's squads also received both GNAC Institutional Sportsmanship Awards. 

Men's Track Athlete of the Year – Francisco Tavares, Emmanuel College (Mass.)
Women's Track Athlete of the Year – Fatima St. Hilaire, Regis (Mass.)
Men's Field Athlete of the Year – Daniel LaFlamme, Regis (Mass.)
Women's Field Athlete of the Year – Fatima St. Hilaire, Regis (Mass.)
Men's Track Rookie of the Year – John Cavanaugh, Emmanuel College (Mass.)
Women's Track Rookie of the Year – Abby Flaherty, Regis (Mass.)
Men's Field Rookie of the Year – Noah Hutchinson, Saint Joseph's College of Maine
Women's Field Rookie of the Year – Emma Belyea, Saint Joseph's College of Maine
Men's Coach of the Year – Kourtney Bonsey, Regis (Mass.)
Women's Coach of the Year – Kourtney Bonsey, Regis (Mass.)
Men's Institutional Sportsmanship Award – Regis (Mass.)
Women's Institutional Sportsmanship Award – Regis (Mass.)

Jordyn Gonsor, Emmanuel (Jr., Springfield, Mass.)
Patrick Carty, Emmanuel (So., Sweden, Maine)
Ben Lane, Lasell (Jr., Rutland, Vt.)
Shannon Hart, Lasell (Sr., Mashpee, Mass.)
Fred Mathieu, Regis (Mass.) (Sr., Miami, Fla.)
Fatima St. Hilaire Regis (Mass.) (Jr., Danvers, Mass.)
Lucas Fisher, Saint Joseph's (Maine) (Sr., Strafford, N.H.)
Bree Sautter, Saint Joseph's (Maine) (So., Lisbon, Maine)
Emily Manfra, Suffolk (So., Stoneham, Mass.) 
Matt Sambuceti, Suffolk (So., Marlborough, Mass.) 

Founded in 1995, the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) is an NCAA Division III association made up of 13 member institutions and over 3,000 student-athletes across the New England region. Each year, the GNAC sponsors and administers 20 championships, while balancing academic integrity, athletic opportunities and community involvement.