| March 22, 2018

Awards: Hall of Fame Bound

The University of Idaho netted two prestigious awards during the 54th annual North Idaho Sports Banquet Monday, as the university earned Team of the Year and Female Athlete of the Year honors.

The Idaho women’s soccer team was named Team of the Year after an unbeaten run in conference play that included the Big Sky regular season title.

The Vandal soccer team cruised to a 9-0-1 record against Big Sky opponents last season, before falling to Northern Colorado during the postseason championship in penalty kicks.

The program boasts a 14-game unbeaten streak, which is currently the longest streak in the nation.

“It’s just great that our team is being recognized by the entire state,” Pittman said. “It gives us a great sense of pride and accomplishment for what our players were able to achieve this past year.”

Nine Vandal athletes earned All-Big Sky honors during the season, including freshman goalkeeper Amanda Poertner, who was named Goalkeeper of the Year after posting nine shutouts. Junior Clara Gomez set individual season records for both the Vandal program and the Big Sky Conference after providing 13 assists for Idaho.

Pittman was also awarded Coach of the Year honors by the conference after a turnaround 2015 season that concluded with a 14-4-3 overall record.

“We definitely hope to continue and it’s nice to set the standards where you have this level of expectations on an annual basis,” Pittman said.

Senior guard Christina Salvatore was also awarded the North Idaho Hall of Fame’s Female Athlete of the Year award after leading the Vandal women’s basketball team in four different categories.

Salvatore led Idaho in scoring with 11.8 points per game and 2.7 treys per contest. The senior guard also recorded an average of 3.4 assists per game and recorded 1.6 steals per game.

Salvatore’s performance helped the Vandals win the Big Sky Conference title and reach the NCAA Tournament.

“This is an honor well deserved for Christina,” Idaho head coach Jon Newlee said. “She had a fantastic senior year and was a huge reason we were able to make it to the NCAA Tournament for the third time in four years.”

Salvatore started in over 120 contests for the Vandals and amassed 1,370 points during her career for the ninth best performance in school history.

“What a great way to cap off an unprecedented four-year run, both individually and as a team,” Newlee said.

Josh Grissom can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu or on Twitter @GoshJrissom

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