Yuji Callahan Wins Patriot League Sportsmanship Award
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – Holy Cross men’s soccer captain Yuji Callahan was named the 2017-18 male recipient of the Patriot League Sportsmanship Award, announced by the League office on June 20. Callahan was selected through a vote by administrators of the League’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC).
Callahan is just the second Crusader to win the Patriot League Sportsmanship Award, after Katelyn Hartnett won win after the 2011-2012 season. Callahan is Holy Cross’ first male recipient.
The Patriot League Sportsmanship Award is in its 13th year after being created to honor student-athletes that uphold the principles on which the League was founded – fairness, equality, and excellence in academics and athletics. Each of the 10 full member institutions is eligible to nominate a male and female student-athlete for the award.
As a two-year team captain and three-time all-League midfielder, Callahan helped the Crusaders to an impressive run to the Patriot League Men's Soccer Championship game for the first time since 2013. Through the run, Callahan earned all-tournament accolades and started 17-of-19 games during his senior campaign. He finished third on the team in minutes played (1,572). As a veteran leader within the Holy Cross Leadership Academy, Callahan volunteered with Working for Worcester and Benching for Breast Cancer. The midfielder also volunteered as a translator for the Special Olympics in 2013 on the Kadena Air Base in Okinawa.
“The distinct combination of Yuji’s basic work ethic, innate intelligence, engaging personality, not to mention, his non-negotiable commitment to succeed - wherein he will leave an indelible fingerprint on our athletic department and the College - is immediately why he came to mind for this award,” said Armani Dawkins, the Associate Director of Athletics for Student-Athlete Development at Holy Cross. “Yuji demonstrates the values of respect and integrity both on the playing field, and in moments when he thinks no one is watching.”
In his career as a Crusader, Callahan tallied 16 points on five goals and six assists, including two game-winning goals.
“Yuji has been an exceptional leader and servant of this soccer program,” rising senior teammate R.J. Place said. “He is also a young man of outstanding character. His contribution to the athletic department and the school deserves to be recognized.”
Initially awarded at the conclusion of the 2005-06 academic year, the Patriot League Sportsmanship Award is given to one male and one female winner selected each year. The Patriot League has established this Sportsmanship Award to recognize and honor those who demonstrate the values of respect and integrity through a specific action ideally directed towards an opponent. Nominees must have consistently demonstrated the values of respect and integrity in his or her daily participation in intercollegiate athletics. Student-athlete or team nominees must be affiliated with a Patriot League-sponsored sport during the academic year. In addition, nominees must be in good academic standing at the time of the award application.