Eight UQ student athletes have joined the ranks of the sporting elite after receiving a UQ Blue – The University of Queensland’s highest sporting honour – at the 2017 UQ Blues Awards Dinner.
Since 1912, Blues and Half Blues awards have been presented to UQ students in recognition of outstanding sporting achievements, and for enhancing the reputation of university sport.
A total of 29 UQ students received awards at the gala event, with 21 Half Blues also bestowed to outstanding athletes.
Sporting achievements were considered over a 12-month period from October 2016 to September 2017, with judging undertaken by an independent Blues Advisory Committee.
UQ Sport chief executive Bryan Pryde said the awardees joined an exclusive group of elite student athletes.
“The tradition of UQ Blues commenced more than a century ago, and close to 2400 Blues and Half Blues have been awarded during that time,” Mr Pryde said.
“Athletes who earn a Blue have excelled at the highest level in their chosen sport, with Half Blue recipients recognised for outstanding performances at state or national level.”
“This year’s UQ Blue winners add to a list of sporting greats to have earned the accolade, including Olympians Susie O’Neill, Natalie Cook and Kieren Perkins, and Wallaby greats Michael Lynagh and Stephen Moore.”
Trophies for the 2017 event, held at Customs House, were crafted using the Grevillea robusta tree – a species commonly found on UQ’s St Lucia campus.
Former ABC Grandstand commentator Gerry Collins hosted the event, with WBO Welterweight boxing champion Jeff Horn the evening’s guest speaker.
2017 UQ Blue recipients:
Liam Adcock (Athletics)
The Bachelor of Commerce / Bachelor of Economics student won a gold medal in the Men’s Long Jump at the 2017 Queensland Athletics Championships, and scored silver in the same event at this year’s Australian Championships. Liam also claimed Long Jump gold at 2017 Australian Uni Games.
Rebecca Greiner (Hockey)
The Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours) student was a member of Australia’s Under 21 side that won a bronze medal at the 2016 Junior World Cup in Chile. For the past two years, Rebecca has represented the Queensland Scorchers in the Australian Hockey League, with the team crowned national champions in 2016, and runners-up in 2017.
Kimberley Jenner (Netball)
The Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education (Honours) student played in defence for the Queensland Firebirds during the 2017 Super Netball season, with the club finishing fifth. She was also a member of the fourth-placed Queensland Fusion team in the 2017 Australian National League.
Breanna Koenen (Australian Football)
A previous Half Blue recipient, Breanna played Half Back for the Brisbane Lions in the inaugural 2017 AFL Women’s competition, with the club making the Grand Final. In 2016, the Bachelor of Physiotherapy student was selected for the Queensland Women’s State Academy, and was named in the QWAFL ‘Team of the Year’.
Leo Lark (Weightlifting)
A 2015 Half Blue recipient, Leo won the Senior Men’s 77kg Class – and was named ‘Best Male Lifter’ – at this year’s Australian Weightlifting Championships. The Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) student has also been selected in Australia’s ‘Shadow Squad’ for the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Madeleine Williams (Rowing)
The Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) student won three medals at the 2017 Australian Rowing Championships – including gold in the Under 23 Women’s Lightweight Quad. She also claimed gold medals in four events at this year’s Queensland Championships, and was an A-finalist in the Lightweight Quad at the 2017 Under 23 World Rowing Championships.
Megan Williams (Mountain Biking)
A 2015 Half Blue recipient, Megan won gold medals in the Under 23 Cross Country Olympic class at both the 2017 Mountain Bike Australia National Championships, and the Oceania Continental Championships. The Bachelor of Commerce student also competed for Australia at this year’s Mountain Bike World Championships.
Ellen Wright (Judo)
The Bachelor of Business Management / Bachelor of Information Technology student won gold medals in the Senior and Under 21 Women’s 57kg classes at both the 2017 Oceania Continental Judo Championships, and the ACT International Open. Ellen also took out the Women’s 63kg class at 2017 Australian Uni Games, and was crowned Women’s ‘Champion of Champion’.
2017 UQ Half Blue recipients:
Lily Alton (Rowing) – Bachelor of Arts
Hannah Astbury (Hockey) – Bachelor of Communication
Rhiannon Baxter (Hockey) – Bachelor of Biotechnology (Honours)
Callum Breetzke (Surf Life Saving) – Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) / Bachelor of Information Technology
Connor Clancy (Rugby Sevens) – Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education
Jennifer Cleary (Rowing) – Bachelor of Science (Honours)
Justin Cridland (Touch Football) – Bachelor of Physiotherapy
Ryan Dowse (Indoor Cricket) – Bachelor of Engineering / Bachelor of Business Management
Jake Duffy (Table Tennis) – Bachelor of Commerce / Bachelor of Economics
Jonty Flottmann (Athletics) – Bachelor of Economics / Bachelor of Science
Simon Greig (Athletics) – Doctor of Medicine
Megumi Hamashima (Judo) – ICTE-UQ – General English
Caitlin Hockings (Rowing) – Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education
Daniel Mowen (Athletics) – Bachelor of Arts
Linus Mueller (Ultimate) – Bachelor of Laws / Bachelor of Science
Annabelle Needham (Rowing) – Bachelor of Exercise and Nutrition Science
Samantha Phillips (Athletics) – Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education
Darcy Roper (Athletics) – Bachelor of Business Management
Matthew Schubert (Indoor Cricket) – Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education
Drew Wenzel (Hockey) – Bachelor of Business Management
William White (Athletics) – Bachelor of Exercise and Nutrition Science