WORCESTER, Mass. – The Holy Cross men's rowing program has announced its team awards for the 2013-2014 season. Senior Henry Van Damme (Cochabamba, Bolivia) won the Lawrence Chick (Class of 1970) Award, freshman Vince LaMonte (West Babylon, N.Y.) received the Francis "Bud" Ermilio (Class of 1981) Outstanding Freshman Award and senior Michael Fitzgerald (New York, N.Y.) earned the Rea Cassidy (Class of 1981) Award.
The Chick Award is given in honor of Larry Chick (Class of 1970), a rower and team captain at both St. John's and Holy Cross, who was tragically killed while rowing his single on Lake Quinsigamond shortly after graduating from Holy Cross in 1970. The award goes to the athlete who best exemplifies the ideals of what it means to be an oarsman at Holy Cross. While the winner is often a very talented athlete, the award is not a "Most Valuable Player" in the traditional sense. Van Damme was a member of the varsity eight in all nine regattas this season.
The Ermilio Outstanding Freshman Award is given in honor of former rower, captain and long-time coach, "Bud" Ermilio (Class of 1981). The award is given to a freshman oarsman who has made an outstanding contribution to the team. That an award recognizes a freshman is reflective of the unique place that freshman rowing has in this sport. LaMonte rowed for the varsity eight in all six spring regattas.
The Cassidy Award is presented annually to the most outstanding coxswain on the men's or women's rowing teams. Fitzgerald was the coxswain for the varsity eight in all six spring regattas this season. Last year, he was the coxswain for the varsity eight that was nationally ranked at No. 20 in the USRowing men's varsity eight poll. He was named to the 2013 IRA All-Academic team.
The varsity eight this season placed first at the Snake Regatta (Oct. 12) and won the Healy Cup for the first time by defeating Georgetown (April 19). The varsity eight also placed 21st in the IRA National Championship on May. 30-June 1.
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