TORONTO — Cassandra Provost, a second-year forward from the University of Ottawa, was named the U SPORTS player of the year in women’s soccer, Wednesday night. Provost, who is from Acton Vale, Que., becomes the third Gee-Gee to take the Chantal Navert Memorial Award, after Gillian Baggott in 2012.
Other national award winners announced during the All-Canadian Banquet held at the Hôtel Le Concorde in Quebec City were Laval midfielder Léa-Jeanne Fortier, who was named rookie of the year; Memorial midfielder Katie Hickey, who won the Student-Athlete Community Service Award; and Laval head coach David Deloges, who was honoured by his peers as the Fox40 coach of the year.
The 2022 U SPORTS championship gets underway Thursday at Laval University’s Stade TELUS and culminates Sunday with the national championship game at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. All 11 games from the eight-team tournament will be webcast live on CBC Gem and cbcsports.ca in English, and USPORTS.ca in French.
Official championship website: usports.ca/en/championships/soccer/f/info
CHANTAL NAVERT MEMORIAL AWARD (player of the year): Cassandra Provost, Ottawa
Cassandra Provost was rewarded for her record-setting season in garnet and grey, as she led the country with 18 goals and 21 points, setting program highs along the way. She helped the Gee-Gees post a 9-1-2 regular-season record, and closed out her regular season in style, setting a new program record with five goals on Oct. 9 against Laurentian.
After that game, she joined the Gee-Gees on their trip to the FISU Americas tournament in Mexico, where they took home the gold medal. In her first game back in Canada, Provost scored twice to lead the Gee-Gees to a 4-0 shutout of Toronto in the OUA quarterfinal, kickstarting her squad’s run to its first OUA championship since 2018, and their 10th conference title.
Provost, who is studying accounting, was also a member of the 2021 U SPORTS All-Rookie Team.
Cape Breton forward Alliyah Rowe, Montréal midfielder Mégane Sauvé and UBC forward Danielle Steer were the other nominees.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: Léa-Jeanne Fortier, Laval
Léa-Jeanne Fortier took the RSEQ by storm in 2022, finishing on top of the conference with seven goals and 12 points. A midfielder from Lac-Beauport, Que., she was named game MVP on three occasions. Fortier, who is studying law, scored both Rouge et Or playoff goals – the game-winner in a 1-0 semifinal victory over McGill and the lone goal in their 2-1 loss in the RSEQ final against Montreal.
Fortier becomes the fourth Laval player – the most from any school – to be named U SPORTS rookie of the year, following Marie-Ève LaFlamme (1996), Lisa Nolet (1998) and Mélissa Roy (2014).
Cape Breton midfielder Grace Hannaford, York forward Nia Fleming-Thompson and Trinity Western forward Sophie Crowther were the other nominees.
STUDENT-ATHLETE COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD: Katie Hickey, Memorial
A fourth-year winger from Outer Cove, Newfoundland, Katie Hickey started in 11 games this season, tallying three goals and one assist for the Sea-Hawks. Currently in her first year of a graduate diploma in community health, she boasts a 4.0 GPA, is a four-time Academic All-Canadian and a four-time Dean’s List honouree in Memorial’s faculty of science. On campus, she serves as the secretary for the graduate student society.
Off-campus, Hickey dedicates time weekly to Big Brothers Big Sisters, mentoring youth identifying as girls or non-binary on physical activity, balanced eating and self-esteem. She also serves meals at the Gathering Place—a non-profit community health center that strives to meet the essential needs of marginalized persons—and volunteers with Eastern Health. Since 2019, Hickey has been a volunteer with Ronald McDonald House, which provides accommodations near the hospital to cancer patients and their families. She also serves as the team captain for Relay for Life, leading her Sea-Hawks teammates to participate in fundraising for the Canadian Cancer Society.
Hickey is the third Sea-Hawk to win the award, following Jessie Noseworthy in 2015 and Samantha Hansford in 2010.
Bishop’s defender Kyra Simons, Waterloo striker Alexa Cimermancic, and UBC midfielder Sophie Damian were the other nominees.
FOX40 COACH OF THE YEAR: David Desloges, Laval
In his fourth year at the helm of the Rouge et Or, David Desloges led his squad to a sparkling record of 10 wins, one loss and three draws, good for second place in the RSEQ. Desloges’ system has contributed to both the offensive and defensive exploits of his team, which scored 27 goals and allowed only eight in 14 games. Of note this year is that Laval managed to sweep their main rivals, the Montréal Carabins, in the regular season for the first time in nearly 20 years. Desloges is the second Laval coach to win the award, following the late Helder Duarte in 2002 and 2015.
Dalhousie’s Cindy Tye, Dave McDowell of Queen’s, and Mount Royal’s Tino Fusco were the other nominees.
ALL-CANADIAN AND ALL-ROOKIE TEAMS:
The all-Canadian teams were also announced Wednesday. Joining Provost, Sauvé, Steer, Rowe and Fortier on the first team were goalkeeper Sarah Johns (UBC), defender Tilly James (Trinity Western), midfielders Grace Longley (Acadia), Jotam Chouhan (York), Megan Chiasson (Dalhousie) and forward Grace Mwasalla (MacEwan). Sauvé is a four-time honoree (2018, 2019, 2021), while Steer and Rowe each pick up their second nods. Chiasson was a member of the 2021 all-rookie team.
The second unit consists of Laval goalkeeper Myriam Labrecque; defenders Lauren Jodry (Acadia), Anneke Odinga (MacEwan), Emma Steen (StFX) and Avarie Thomas (Western); midfielders Mara Bouchard (McGill), Tori Chia (Queen’s) and Anyssa Ibrahim (UQAM); along with forwards Rachel Barlow (Calgary), Amanda Smith (StFX) and Karly Hellstrom (Toronto). Smith is a three-time honoree, while this is the second nod for Jodry, and Bouchard was a member of the 2021 all-rookie team.
In addition to Fortier, Hannaford, Crowther and Fleming-Thompson, the 2022 U SPORTS all-rookie team consists of defender Kiann Bohnert (MacEwan); midfielders Léonie Portelance (Montréal), Chloe Renaud (McGill), Seema Sakran (Queen’s) and Ella Sunde (UBC); along with forwards Olivia Allen (Ottawa), Abbey Aucoin (Acadia) and Elise Evans (Dalhousie).
2022 U SPORTS WOMEN'S SOCCER AWARDS & ALL-CANADIANS
- Chantal Navert Award (player of the year): Cassandra Provost, Ottawa
- Rookie of the year: Léa-Jeanne Fortier, Laval
- Student-Athlete Community Service Award: Katie Hickey, Memorial
- Fox40 Coach of the year: David Desloges, Laval
First Team All-Canadians
|GK||Sarah Johns||UBC||4||Calgary, Alta.||Kinesiology|
|D||Tilly James||Trinity Western||2||Vancouver, B.C.||Political Studies|
|MF||Grace Longley||Acadia||3||Bedford, N.S.||Kinesiology|
|MF||Jotam Chouhan||York||5||Caledon, Ont.||Kinesiology & Health Sci.|
|MF||Megan Chiasson||Dalhousie||2||Lower Sackville, N.S.||Science|
|MF||Léa-Jeanne Fortier||Laval||1||Lac-Beauport, Que.||Law|
|MF||Mégane Sauvé||Montréal||5||Saint-Hyacinthe, Que.||Secondary Education|
|F||Cassandra Provost||Ottawa||2||Acton Vale, Que.||Accounting|
|F||Danielle Steer||UBC||5||Surrey, B.C.||Arts|
|F||Grace Mwasalla||MacEwan||2||Calgary, Alta.||Arts|
|F||Alliyah Rowe||Cape Breton||3||Kitchener, Ont.||Arts|
Second Team All-Canadians
|GK||Myriam Labrecque||Laval||5||Quebec City, Que.||Medicine|
|D||Lauren Jodrey||Acadia||4||Hammonds Plains, N.S.||Community Development|
|D||Anneke Odinga||MacEwan||2||St. Albert, Alta.||Arts|
|D||Emma Steen||StFX||2||Stittsville, Ont.||Human Kinetics|
|D||Avarie Thomas||Western||2||London, Ont.||Kinesiology|
|MF||Mara Bouchard||McGill||2||Granby, Que.||Psychology|
|MF||Tori Chia||Queen's||5||Courtice, Ont.||Physical Therapy|
|MF||Anyssa Ibrahim||UQAM||3||Montreal, Que.||International Relations|
|F||Rachel Barlow||Calgary||3||Calgary, Alta.||Kinesiology|
|F||Amanda Smith||StFX||4||Ottawa, Ont.||Education|
|F||Karly Hellstrom||Toronto||5||Sudbury, Ont.||Physical Therapy|
|D||Kiann Bohnert||MacEwan||Lethbridge, Alta.||Open Studies|
|MF||Léa-Jeanne Fortier||Laval||Lac-Beauport, Que.||Law|
|MF||Grace Hannaford||Cape Breton||Enfield, N.S.||Science|
|MF||Léonie Portelance||Montréal||Montreal, Que.||Neuroscience|
|MF||Chloe Renaud||McGill||St. Hubert, Que.||Psychology|
|MF||Seema Sakran||Queen's||Barrie, Ont.||Kinesiology|
|MF||Ella Sunde||UBC||North Vancouver, B.C.||Science|
|F||Olivia Allen||Ottawa||Holland Landing, Ont.||Biomedical Science|
|F||Abbey Aucoin||Acadia||Dartmouth, N.S.||Science|
|F||Sophie Crowther||Trinity Western||New Westminster, B.C.||General Studies|
|F||Elise Evans||Dalhousie||Toronto, Ont.||Arts & Social Sci.|
|F||Nia Fleming-Thompson||York||Mississauga, Ont.||Liberal Arts & Prof. Stud.|