Three-sport standouts Erica Pawlewicz and Chris Jones on Tuesday received the Dan McGinnis Senior Athlete of the Year Awards, highlighting the Fulton Athletic Boosters’ Senior Athletes Recognition Banquet at The Oasis at Thunder Island.
Pawlewicz has starred in volleyball, indoor track, and outdoor track for the Red Raiders.
She earned first-team all-league honors in volleyball, broke school records in the long jump and 200-meter dash during the indoor track season, and currently ranks among the Section III leaders in the long jump for the outdoor track season.
Jones was a star wide receiver and linebacker for the Fulton football team, earning first-team all-league honors and second-team All-CNY recognition. He made the all-league second team in basketball, and completed on the baseball team this spring.
Several awards and scholarships were presented during the evening, set up by the boosters to honor all of Fulton’s senior student-athletes.
Cheryl Wallace Vilardo, a 1996 graduate of G. Ray Bodley High School and a former Raider student-athlete, was the guest speaker. She lettered in soccer, basketball, and softball at Fulton. She overcame tearing both ACLs during high school and was named to all-league teams in soccer and softball.
Vilardo went on to play soccer at William Smith College and helped her team qualify for the NCAA Division III Tournament four years in a row. The team finished second in the nation in her sophomore year. She was named to the All-American and Academic All-America teams.
Currently an assistant principal at East Syracuse-Minoa High School, Vilardo had some words of wisdom for the Red Raider seniors. She said that sports are fun, build character, teach you to work hard, and teach you to persevere.
“They’ve guided me all along, and they still do,” she said, noting she is active in running, bowling, golfing, and other sports.
She referenced her torn ACLs and pointed out that life will pose challenges to everyone. “What matters is how you respond to those challenges,” she said.
She closed by saying that Fulton is “an amazing place” that provides its students with great opportunities and support.
“Why do communities support sports? Because sports make people better,” she said.
Following is a list of awards presented at the ceremony.
Judy & David Trepasso Fan of the Year: Bev & Henry Hudson.
Fulton Athletic Booster Lifetime Membership Award: Mike Phillips.
Outstanding Athletic Performance: Kendra Tryniski.
Section III Championship Awards: Fulton’s wrestling and boys bowling teams.
Dale Tombs Baseball Award: Jon Cummins.
Barney Naioti Leadership Award: Cheyenne Laun, Bailey Lutz.
Joe Castiglia Effort Award: Kendra Tryniski, Shawn Walberger.
Gene Adams Most Improved: Madden Rowlee, Geoff Michaels.
Sox Stuber Sportsmanship Award: Kara Bricker, Emma Harvey, Jon Cummins.
Dan McGinnis Senior Athlete of the Year: Erica Pawlewicz, Chris Jones.
Rick Luciano Football Scholarship: David Hursh.
Shirley Chalifoux Scholarship: Courtney Smith, Brian Hudson.
Danielle Rae Kunzwiler Guistina Scholarship: Grace Trepasso.
Brian Dodge Scholarship: Erica Pawlewicz, Bailey Lutz.
Margaret Beckwith Scholarship: Erica Pawlewicz.
Carl Barton Scholarship: Bailey Lutz.