Sophie de Goede continued to shine for the Queen’s Gaels last season, adding yet another award to her decorated case. The two-sport star for the Queen’s women’s rugby and basketball teams, was the OUA’s top rugby scorer in 2019. She churned out an outstanding 76 points on the year, surpassing her closest competitor by 26, as a result of her three tries and 26 conversions.
Moving into on the Gaels’ all-time scoring list, the conference MVP nod is the second straight for the No. 8, after taking home U SPORTS Player of the Year honours in 2018. Following the Gaels’ first OUA championship title since 2013, de Goede led Queen’s to the national tournament where she tallied three tries and 10 conversions for 35 points – earning a silver medal and her third straight Tournament All-Star honours.
Throughout the rest of her now three years on the pitch, the commerce major has also claimed a trio of all-star nods at the provincial level, a pair of All-Canadian recognitions and both OUA and U SPORTS Rookie of the Year honours. On the basketball court, de Goede was named the Queen’s Rookie of the Year in 2017-18, and led the team last season to a 15-7 record, averaging 12.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game.
Internationally, de Goede has four caps with Team Canada’s rugby side and hopes to earn roster spots in 2021 at the Tokyo Olympics and the Women’s World Cup. She recently signed with Saracens of the English Premier League.
“Sophie's ability to excel in the classroom and on the pitch is a testament to her hard work, drive, and commitment to excellence as a student and an athlete,” said Gaels women’s rugby head coach Dan Valley. “Although the demands that are placed on a varsity athlete are challenging at the best of times, to watch Sophie not only manage but excel as a commerce student and member of two varsity sport programs speaks to her truly unique skill set. In this regard, Sophie is unlike any student-athlete in the country.”
A three-time Academic All-Canadian, de Goede excels in the classroom, having received the Chancellor’s Scholarship the last three years and the DI McLeod Dean’s List Scholarship in both 2018 and 2019. She is also active in the community in both her sports, serving as an assistant in 2017 with the Willows Elementary School Grade 4&5 Girls’ basketball team, fundraising for the annual U SPORTS Women’s Basketball Shoot for the Cure campaign to raise money to fight breast cancer, and volunteering at the Queen’s Rugby Academy teaching local high school athletes rugby skills.
In addition, she has participated in the CIBC Run for the Cure every year since 2014, taken part in the Live Different Builds humanitarian trip in Mexico in 2016, and assisted with the Gaels’ holiday community outreach project collecting donations for Martha’s Table last year.
“Sophie is really in uncharted waters here. “The time commitment she makes outside of the classroom far exceeds that of a normal athlete, not to mention a normal student, and yet she manages to balance all of her involvements while attaining academic excellence.,” said Gaels women’s basketball head coach Dave Wilson. “In my 38 years of U SPORT coaching, I have not seen another athlete or another person, reach such elite status in all of the different endeavours to which she devotes her time. It is truly remarkable!”
de Goede is the seventh Gael and second Queen’s female to earn the Top 8 honour, joining volleyball’s Kristine Spekkens in 1999-2000. She is also the eighth female multi-sport student-athlete to be recognized including the first in rugby and basketball.