Winter Sports Awards Assembly Recognizes The Outstanding Success Of The Winter Sports Teams


All of the athletes from boys wrestling, girls and boys soccer, and girls and boys basketball line up for a photo with their awards after the assembly.

The Winter Sports Awards Assembly was held in the James Healey Gymnasium on Tuesday, Mar. 6, to celebrate the sports teams’ achievements from this past season. 

Assistant athletic directors Mr. Dave Bailey and Mrs. Alexandria Clarke, and athletic director Mr. Ryan Smith led this event. They had the task of honoring the overwhelmingly successful winter sports teams of boys wrestling, girls and boys soccer, and girls and boys basketball. 

“There were so many amazing accomplishments in this winter sports season from all of the teams. The wrestling team was the district runner-up for the first time in Benjamin history, the boy’s basketball team was regional semi-finalists, girls’ basketball was the district runner-ups, the boy’s soccer team were regional quarterfinalists, and the girl’s soccer team was a state semi-finalist,” Bailey explained. 

The Boys Wrestling Team poses for a photo after being recognized for their successful seasons at the Winter Sports Award Assembly.

After welcoming the students in, Smith called up each team and shared the key moments and memories from each of their seasons. Then, additional awards were handed out to players chosen by the coaches of each team for their outstanding efforts and contributions. 

Junior Charlie Scotto, a member of the boy’s soccer team, was one of these students and was given the Coach’s Award. 

“It feels pretty great to be recognized for the award because each day I tried to improve, get better, and take the criticism that Coach Kris was giving me. I had such a good time this season getting better and having fun with my friends while playing, so it was great to cap off the season with the Coach’s award,” Scotto said. 

Junior Christian Balisteri won an award as well for being the most improved player on the boy’s basketball team and was happy to be recognized for the effort he put into the team. 

“I was very glad to receive this award because it showed me that my work was seen by others and paid off in the end. I put in a ton of extra time throughout the offseason this year to help my game improve so getting this specific recognition made me feel amazing,’’ Balisteri expressed. 

Not only were individual students awarded for their hard work at Benjamin, but some were even recognized in the news and broke records. Senior Maddie Popleik was awarded Scholar-Athlete of the Month by WPBF 25 News for her soccer and academic talent.  

“It always feels good to receive an award but getting this one made me feel especially fantastic. I feel like it helps reflect all the hard work I put into not only athletics but academics as well and I hope it inspires others to do the same,” Popleik said. 

Additionally, both junior Lily White and sophomore Ford Cash won the Sun Sentinel Soccer Player of the Year Award and seniors Taylor Blackshear and Gavin Adelotte both broke records as they scored 1000 basketball points in their upper school careers. 

Overall, the Winter Sports Awards Assembly was a grand success, honoring the exemplary performance of the Winter sports teams. The wrestling, soccer, and basketball teams both boys and girls had incredible seasons all making it deep into the postseason with the regional competition and experiencing all-time highs. 

“The Winter Sports teams all had outstanding seasons and the awards were really meant to echo that. We hold this assembly every year because we want to thank the students for really putting their best efforts toward their teams, and making Benjamin extremely proud,” Smith said. 

This graphic notes all of the students who have won Winter Sports Awards both in and out of school. (Chase Zur)