Sports

Hamm named Canadian rugby all-star

Aldergrove
Aldergrove's Megan Hamm, playing fly half for the UBC Thunderbirds, has been named a Canada West Rugby All-Star for the third year in a row.
— image credit: Bob Frid, UBC Athletics photo

Aldergrove's Megan Hamm has been named to the 2012 Canada West women's rugby All-Stars for the third year in a row.

Hamm has been an outstanding player since her Aldergrove Secondary years, during which she helped the girls' rugby team win several championships. She has played for the B.C. and Canadian national teams as well as for Abbotsford Rugby Club, prior to signing on with the UBC Thunderbirds.

Hamm says the pressure of school and injury have been a challenge this season, however.

"Although I have a hard time admitting to injury I have been suffering from a back injury for the past several months," says Hamm. "It is very difficult and frustrating when you are unable to play to your full potential. My position on the field controls a huge aspect of the game and the minute I lose composure, it has a major influence on the rest of my team."

There have been highlights, however.

"My favourite memory of the past rugby season would have to be winning our last home game to go to Canwest. Leading only by a try while defending our try line with everything we have left in the tanks, I have never been so relieved to hear the final whistle blow. That day we put everything we were working on together. I could feel the passion and determination from every single one of my teammates.

"School is going well, although with exams and paper deadlines just around the corner it feels like the semester just started. I am into my senior years of a kinesiology degree and finding my classes really intense, but interesting. Maybe I can direct the extra energy towards my studies and focus on improving my academics.

"Right now my main focus is on the recovery process and finishing my degree. At this point I have been just taking it day by day so I haven’t put too much thought into the future.

"The 2016 Olympic Games was a future lifelong goal that seems to be getting farther and farther away. Hopefully with one of the best sport doctors at the heart of UBC I can recover quickly and get back to the sport I love," says Hamm.

Award winners at the 2012 women's rugby championships include Most Valuable Player Chelsea Guthrie (Alberta), Rookie of the Year Amee Svatos (Alberta), winner of the Student-Athlete and Community Service award Tarin Arndt (Calgary) and Coach of the Year is Alberta Pandas head coach Matt Parrish.

Notable 2012 All-Stars include Brandi Van Eeuwen (Lethbridge), a two-time CIS gold medalist, five-time Canada West champion, former All-Canadian, CIS Tournament All-Star and the 2008 CIS Rookie of the Year, who makes her record fifth straight appearance as a Canada West All-Star.

Carmen Hobbs (Alberta), 2010 CIS Rookie of the Year Meghan Hamm (UBC), Brynna Walker (Calgary) and conference scoring leader Alberta’s Chelsea Guthrie, each made the all-conference roster in 2011. For Guthrie and Hamm it is their third consecutive selection to the team.

Following is the list of the 2012 Canada West women’s rugby Awards & All-Stars:

Awards

Most Valuable Player: Chelsea Guthrie, Alberta

Rookie of the Year: Amee Svatos, Alberta

Student Athlete/Community Service: Tarin Arndt, Calgary

Coach of the Year: Matt Parrish, Alberta

All-Stars

Props: Brandi Van Eeuwen, Lethbridge and Carolyn McEwen, UBC.

Hooker: Carmen Hobbs, Alberta.

2nd Row: Jade Menin, Calgary and Haley Glendinning, UBC.

Back Row: Lindsey Duxbury, Lethbridge; Amee Svatos, Alberta and Miranda Monty, Alberta.

Scrum Half: Chelsea Guthrie, Alberta.

Fly Half: Megan Hamm, UBC.

Centres: Brynna Walker and Amanda Williams

Back 3: Kelcey Leavitt, Calgary; Paula Woynarowsky, Lethbridge and Rebecca Fairbairn, Alberta

The Canada West champion Alberta Pandas now move on to the CIS championship, November 2-4 at St. FX University in Antogonish, N.S.

About Canada West Universities Athletic Association

Canada West is consistently the most decorated of the four conferences in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS), winning at least 10 CIS national titles every year, 1997 to 2010. Comprised of 16 schools from the provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia, Canada West produces numerous major award winners and Academic All-Canadian student-athletes each year, with many going on to athletic success around the globe in professional leagues or events such as the Olympics, Paralympics or Universiade Games.

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