posted on: Thursday November 29, 2018
By Meaghan Cahill ’20
Cross country runner Abbey Wheeler ’20 and soccer player Tiago Mendonca ’20RS are the top two standout athletes of the fall sports season.
This racing season, according to Head Coach Ray Treacy, Wheeler has been Providence College’s top runner for the women’s team. Wheeler finished as the overall winner in the University of New Hampshire Dual Meet, the Coast-to-Coast Battle in Beantown, and the Central Connecticut State University Mini Meet. She finished the CCSU Mini Meet with the fastest posted time by a non-redshirt collegian in the past six years with a time of 9:48.9 for the 5K.
At the Big East Championships, Wheeler finished first for the Friars and fourth overall—an improvement from her 10th place finish last season. Her 20:35.3 time earned her All-Big East honors for this season. At the NCAA Northeast Regional Meet, Wheeler finished second for the Friars and 33rd overall.
The NCAA named Wheeler the Cross Country National Athlete of the Week twice this season. Wheeler was also named Big East Runner of the Week twice this season.
Wheeler deserves best female athlete of the 2018 fall sports season because of the key role she has played in the cross country team’s success these past few months.
Alongside Wheeler, another standout athlete from the fall season is Mendonca, who is a plays midfield for the men’s soccer team.
Arguably, goalie Colin Miller ’19 RS is considered to be the star of the soccer team this year, but no matter how good the goalie is, a team cannot win games if they do not score goals—and that is exactly what Mendonca did this season.
Playing in all 19 games of the season, Mendonca led the team in goals (5), points (10), shots (40), and shots on goal (15). During a season where nine of the team’s wins were decided by just one goal, Mendonca’s value in regards to the team’s success was definitely heightened.
Mendonca is the only member of the soccer team to be named to the All-Big East First Team and earlier in the season, the Portugal native was named to the Capitol City Classic All-Tournament Team.
Both Wheeler and Mendonca were key players in their team’s successes this fall season and it is for that reason they should be recognized as the two athletes with the most successful sports season.