Big UPEI Panther celebration tonight

Jason Malloy
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The UPEI Panthers will celebrate the season tonight in Charlottetown.

“It’s a chance for us to recognize, salute and thank coaches, athletes, support staff what we consider to be a good year in 2013-14,” said Billy Schurman, director of athletics and recreation. “Our role as an athletic department is to enhance the student-athlete experience. From a varsity perspective, that is measured in not only wins and losses.”

It consists of many things, including academic achievements, community involvement and hard work.

The university’s record 73 academic all-Canadians from the 2012-13 year will be recognized at a special ceremony beginning at 5:45 p.m. It represented about 40 per cent of the student-athlete population.

The 45th annual award

show begins at 7 p.m. and can be watched online at www.austv.ca.

About 300 athletes competed this season for the Panthers

on one of its nine varsity

or eight club teams.

“We do have a lot to celebrate,” Schurman said.

The university had a record number of athletes of distinction, including conference and national award winners and the first Olympian (women’s hockey player Anja Weisser) in the university history.

It also had improvements in a number of sports and showed increases in attendance.

Schurman called the Panthers are the future and the future is in good hands.

“I’m able to see and work with them and talk with them and interact with them daily. I can assure people those that are leaving here are going to be great citizens and contribute to their communities,” he said.

“They’re enthusiastic and have the character that would make you proud if they were from your family, or in this case, the athletic and recreation family.”

UPEI hosted the Atlantic University Sport women’s basketball and women’s rugby this past season and will host the Canadian Interuniversity Sport men’s soccer championships in the fall.

Organizations: Panthers, Schurman said.The university, Atlantic University Sport

Geographic location: Charlottetown

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