Alanna Bekkering of the TRU WolfPack women's soccer team was named the Pacific Western Athletic Association's player of the year on Tuesday, while head coach Tom McManus was honoured as the coach of the year.
"I can't believe it," Bekkering, who led the WolfPack to a 10-2-2 record and first place, said in a news release. "It has been a roller-coaster year. I knew we had a strong team but we had our moments. It is a team award rather than an individual one.
"I think what makes this honour so special is that I was named to the first all-star team with two of my friends."
Bekkering, a fourth-year midfielder from Kamloops, was named to the first all-star team, along with midfielder Bronwyn Crawford, a third-year player from Kamloops who didn't play the last two seasons, and Blair MacKay, a fifth-year defender from Kamloops. The three have played on the same teams since they were 11 years of age.
"It is really an honor," said MacKay, who is an all-star for a third straight season. "I am really privileged that I got it. I couldn't have asked for anything more than to play my last year with two of my best friends and for all three of us to be chosen as first team all-stars is awesome."
Courtney Daly, a freshman forward from Kamloops, and Laura Smylie, a third-year sweeper from 150 Mile House, were selected to the second team.
McManus said his award has to be shared with assistant coaches Danilo Caron and Andy Gelowitz.
"It was my team and my coaching staff for my award," McManus said.
MacKay said: "He is an excellent coach. He got us this far and (we) hope we make it to nationals again."
The WolfPack, which is ranked sixth in the nation, up one spot from last week, will meet the Langara Falcons in a semifinal game on Friday in Squamish. The final is scheduled for Saturday.
Meawhile, defender Nolan Wallace of the WolfPack was named the rookie of the year in men's soccer. His brother, Justin, won the award in 2010. Their father, Sean, is co-head coach of the WolfPack.
"It is a great honor," said Nolan, who is from Kamloops, in a news release. "It was a pretty tough transition going from high school to U-21 (to the WolfPack). The pace is a lot higher and the competition was a lot stronger."
Sean was playing the role of proud father and coach.
"As a father I am very proud but more proud as a coach that we have had two individuals who have got to that level," he said.
Nolan was one of three TRU players to be named to the second all-star team, joining Corey Wallis, a second-year defender from Enderby, and forward Sebastian Gardner, a third-year player from Vernon.
Gardner returned to the pitch after having been diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma earlier in the year.
Ashley Raynes, a third-year midfielder from Manchester, England, was named to the first team. Raynes was tied for 11th in scoring, with five goals in 14 matches.
The WolfPack, which moved from 12th to 11th in the rankings, will head for Squamish and playoffs this weekend. TRU will play the Vancouver Island U Mariners in a Saturday semifinal.