By DARREN COOPER
This spring there were victories, triumphs and championships. Now there will be rewards given to the players and teams who have worked to be great.
I call it “Awards Season” — that period of time right after a season ends when there’s chicken to be eaten (or you can go with the fish), speeches to be made and plaques and trophies to be presented.
Awards Season has already begun in North Jersey with the always enchanting Passaic County student-athlete awards dinners last week.
Tuesday night, the Bergen County Women Coaches Association will hold its dinner at The Fiesta at 7 to honor first-team All-County athletes and Coaches of the Year in track, softball, lacrosse and golf.
On June 17, a Tuesday, the Bergen County Coaches Association will do the same. Same place, different time, as the boys dinner starts at 6 p.m. and the BCCA will honor teams in baseball, lacrosse, tennis, golf and track.
My favorite part of the evening, besides the dessert, is the speeches the coaches give. It’s inspiring to hear them speak about their honor, and listen to them cite all of the people who have helped them along the way. Of course, they usually defer all of the credit to their team, but there is always a hidden hero or two that they mention.
The Record Local Sports staff continues to partner with both organizations to make a presentation at the end of each dinner. Yes, it’s one more award, but we think it is a good one.
The Spring Athlete of the Season award will go to the girl who had the biggest impact on this season. The criteria are flexible. We are seeking the player who made both a historical and individual splash this spring, but really, it’s kind of one of those things where when you see it, you know.
The selection process is done by the members of the Local Sports staff. The only set requirements are that the athlete live in Bergen and be a first-team All-County honoree. Also, you can win the award only one time during a school year; that’s why Corinne Myers of Westwood is not a nominee in the spring. She won the award this winter.
It’s pretty much the same process for the boys, except the honor has a different name. The boys winner receives the Bob Kurland Award, named for the retired longtime Record sportswriter. The winners receive a framed poster of themselves in action.
And now it is time to announce the nominees for the Spring Athlete of the Season (in alphabetical order). The award will be presented Tuesday.
* Cheyenne Bellerand, Emerson (track)
* Taryn DeLeon, Old Tappan (track)
* Devin Durando, Indian Hills (softball)
* Cindy Ha, Demarest (golf)
* Darby Kiernan, Ridgewood (lacrosse)
* Angelina McGuire, Immaculate Heart (softball)
* Catherine Pagano, Northern Highlands (track)
* Sarah Piening, Immaculate Conception (softball)