At an awards ceremony following racing for the Gill Coed National Championship at the Port of San Diego, the honors for the Marlow Ropes College Sailor of the Year, Robert H. Hobbs Sportsmanship Award and the Leonard M. Fowle Trophy for the Best Overall Team were presented. The names of the winners will be added to the ICSA Hall of Fame display located in the Robert Crown Center at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.
The Everett B. Morris Trophy is awarded annually to the Marlow Ropes College Sailor of the Year for outstanding performance at the highest level of sailing in the collegiate year. The trophy is named in memory of a distinguished journalist who spent more than 30 years, as a yachting writer and editor. This year there were three finalists for the prestigious award: Raul Rios (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico), a junior at Boston College, Ian Barrows (St. Thomas, USVI), a junior at Yale University and Nevin Snow (San Diego, Calif.), a senior at Georgetown University.
Although each of the sailors had an incredible year of competition, the winner, calculated by the numbers, for the second year in a row, is Nevin Snow. Snow placed first with his team at the MAISA Match Race Championship, eighth at the Men’s Singlehanded National Championship, second with his team at the 2016 LaserPerformance Team Race National Championship and first overall and third in A-division with his team at the 2016 Gill Coed National Championship.
Snow has been named an All-American each year since he started sailing in college and he has had an impressive and versatile college sailing career.
“Nevin had a fantastic year, sailing in four ICSA National Championships and winning almost every regatta he sailed in during the year,” says Ian Burman, head coach for the U.S. Naval Academy and a member of the ICSA All-America committee. “His consistency and brilliance throughout the full range of college sailing disciplines really set him apart from the competition.”
“I am psyched for him,” says Snow’s coach Mike Callahan, “This is a great accomplishment for him and he has worked really hard for it. To win the Gill Coed Nationals and this award all in his hometown, you can’t ask for a better ending.”
“Winning this event and this award is surreal,” says Snow. “It hasn’t totally hit me, but I know it will.”
Snow grew up sailing in San Diego with sailing parents,” My Dad works for North Sails and my Mom did an Olympic campaign in the 470 and was an All-American at the U.S. Naval Academy,” he says.
Snow graduated from Georgetown two weeks ago with a major in physics and math. For now he plans to stay in San Diego and continue to sail.
“I will sail a bunch of boats, but mainly 49ers and Catamarans aiming for the Olympics. I will also do the Youth Americas Cup again,” he says.
The winner of the Leonard M. Fowle Trophy for best overall collegiate team is Yale University with 95.6 points. Georgetown University was second and Stanford University was third in line for the trophy. The team with the most Fowle points, which are compiled results of the ICSA Women’s Singlehanded, Men’s Singlehanded, Match Racing, Coed Semifinals, Women’s, Team Racing, and Coed National Championships, determines the Fowle trophy.
Yale had a successful competitive year including placing first, fifth and seventh at the Men’s Singlehanded National Championship, fifth at the 2016 Sperry Women’s National Championship, first at the 2016 LaserPerformance Team Race National Championship, sixth in the 2016 Eastern Gill Coed Semifinals and third at the 2016 Gill Coed National Championship.
The Robert H. Hobbs Sportsmanship Award is awarded annually to the Sportsman of the Year. The trophy honors Robert Hobbs (MIT '64), past Executive Vice President of ICSA, past President of U.S. Sailing (1992-1994), and former chair of the U.S. Sailing Olympic Committee.
This year’s finalists were Rosalind Lesh ‘16 (Everson, Wash.) from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Rebekah Schiff ‘16 (Tampa, Fla.) from the College of Charleston. This year’s winner is Rebekah Schiff.
“Throughout her career, she has been one of the most gracious and outgoing people in all of ICSA,” says Burman. “Even though she sails at the highest level in every college sailing discipline, she makes everyone feel welcome and routinely goes out of her way to help out up and coming teams.”
“This is awesome,” Schiff said in her acceptance speech. “Thank you to everyone who sailed this year – you’re all sportsmen.”
In a nomination statement for Schiff from Julia Weisner, assistant coach at Jacksonville University, she says:
College sailing thrives because of amazing people who are talented athletes. Beka Schiff from the College of Charleston tops the list as one of the best of best. Beka not only sails in all top events in college sailing (Lasers, Coed, Women’s, Team Racing, and Match Racing) but she also involves, motivates, and inspires her teammates –both men and women, as well as the teams around her. She is a role model to sailors and other student athletes and also brings a sense of encouragement, fairness, and healthy competition to all sailors and coaches.
Schiff is graduating from the College of Charleston this spring.