MARQUETTE – Schuyler Brown (Montpelier, Va.) was named the United States Olympic Education Center’s Athlete of the Year for 2008-09. Brown was a member of the USOEC freestyle team and is now training in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Head freestyle coach Shannyn Gillespie said, “There were a lot of deserving athletes, but with her number of medals and work ethic, she was the most deserving.” Gillespie has been Brown’s coach for the past two years.
For the 2008-09 year, Brown placed third at the ASICS U.S. National Championships (Las Vegas, Nev.). She took home gold medals at the University National Championships (Akron, Ohio) and the Body Bar FILA Junior National Championships (Colorado Springs, Colo.). She will compete on Team USA in the FILA Junior World Championships this summer in Konya, Turkey. Brown is ranked third in the 59 kilogram weight class in the U.S. Senior Women’s Rankings.
Gillespie said Brown became psychologically “in tune” when she was competing as well as practicing. She also dropped weight to compete in a different weight class. Throughout the year, she was focused on how she could improve.
“Her work ethic really set her above the rest athlete of the year candidates,” Gillespie added. “It’s rare to see an athlete who takes your advice and applies it. She listens well and is very coachable. Her work ethic gets her to where she’s at. She understands what it takes to be a champion.”
The USOEC’s Athlete of the Year is chosen by a vote from the USOEC coaches and staff. It is a chance to recognize athletes and the accomplishments they have earned through hard work and dedication.
Gillespie said, “It’s always a good thing to be recognized by your peers and the USOEC. It sets the standards high for other athletes and recruits. It shows them what hard work can do both short term and long term.”