Katalin Tolnai named 2023 U SPORTS Women’s Soccer Player of the Year – Women’s Soccer – U SPORTS

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. / KINGSTON, ON – Katalin Tolnai, a fourth-year forward from the University of British Columbia, was named U SPORTS player of the year in women’s soccer Wednesday night. Provost, a Toronto native, becomes the third T-Bird to win the Chantal Navert Memorial Prize, following Jasmin Dhanda in 2017 and Sarah Regan, who shared the prize in 2003.

The remaining national award winners were announced at the All-Canadian Banquet in Kingston, Ontario. were the defender of UBC Sarah Rollinswho was named rookie of the year; Hannah Miller from Trinity Western, who won the Student-Athlete Community Service Award; and head coach of StFX Graham Kennedy, who was honored by his peers as Fox40 Coach of the Year.

The 2023 U SPORTS Championship begins Thursday at Richardson Stadium and concludes Sunday with the national championship game at 3 p.m. Eastern. All 11 games of the eight-team tournament will be broadcast live on CBC’s digital platforms in English, as well as on RadioCanada.ca/Sports and USPORTS.ca in French.

Official website of the championship: usports.ca/en/championships/soccer/f/info

CHANTAL NAVERT MEMORIAL AWARD (player of the year): Katalin Tolnai, UBC

Katalin Tolnai won the Chantal Navert Memorial Award after the fourth-year forward had a record-breaking season. In a most memorable year, Tolnai tied her former teammate, Danielle Steer record of 22 points in a single season after scoring 14 goals and eight assists. Those 22 points were seven more than any other Canada West player in 2023.

By scoring a hat trick and adding four assists against Winnipeg, Tolnai set a new program record and tied the Canada West all-time mark with seven points in a single game. It was the first of three hat tricks the Toronto native scored during the year. Twice this season, the Toronto native has been named U SPORTS Women’s Soccer Player of the Week.

She was one of the driving forces behind the Thunderbirds’ outstanding regular season and her goal in UBC’s quarterfinal game against the Regina Cougars propelled the blue and gold into the Canada West semifinals for an eighth consecutive season.

Other nominees:

  • AU: Alliyah Rowe (Cape Breton)
  • RSEQ: Daphnée Blouin (Laval)
  • OUA: Cassandra Provost (Ottawa)

E_2023.10.15_vs_UBCO_00227_(1).jpg (1.25 MB)


Sarah Rollins played and started 13 of UBC’s 14 regular season games in 2023. The Toronto native only played less than a full 90 minutes once, an 84-minute road game in Kelowna , a match in which she scored her first career goal. for the Thunderbirds on what turned out to be the game-winner.

Rollins finished the year with two goals – both game-winners – and an assist. But her stellar work in her own half earned her praise week after week, noted as one of the best defenders in the conference entering her rookie season. Along with her fellow defensemen, Rollins helped UBC become a top defense in the conference, allowing just five goals in 14 regular season games.

Rollins becomes the second Thunderbird in the last three seasons to earn national Rookie of the Year honors.

Other nominees:

  • AU: Cara Freeman (Saint Mary’s)
  • RSEQ: Florence Thibeault (Laval)
  • OUA: Léda Naihin (Queen’s)

15I1274.jpg (8.69 MB)


Hannah Miller, a fifth-year guard from Langley, British Columbia, is an exceptional servant leader who has shown what it means to give back throughout her student-athlete career. She exemplified what it means to give of herself for the benefit of others and has dedicated much of her career to serving in many ways, places and contexts.

She coordinates a TeamUp camp for underserved and disadvantaged children in Chilliwack each summer, helping to coordinate athletes and coaches to provide approximately 200 children with the opportunity to have a fun-filled week-long sports camp experience. She volunteers and runs a sports outreach program, run by TeamUp Canada, which focuses on helping children from displaced or refugee families in the Edmonds community in Burnaby, British Columbia. She regularly serves as a coach and coordinator of volunteers for the Edmonds TeamUp program on a weekly basis.

Miller has been a participant and junior leader on international IMPACT trips to Peru, Paraguay and Uganda over the past 12-18 months. In July, she joined 16 other athletes who traveled to Uganda to provide life-changing opportunities through sport to hundreds of children in six different communities. She also helped TeamUp Canada facilitate leadership training for local leaders and helped elevate the role of women in sport and provide opportunities for young girls to participate in the sports programs she and her athletes led during the 17 day project.

Other nominees:

  • Australia: Zoë Rowe (Memorial)
  • RSEQ: Tiffany Smith (Bishop)
  • OUA: Katrina Pappas (Technology Ontario)

Kennedy_Graham-1.jpg (54 KB)FOX40 COACH OF THE YEAR: Graham Kennedy, STFX

STFX X-Women head coach Graham Kennedy has been selected as the Fox40 Women’s Soccer Coach of the Year. This is his first victory in women’s soccer, but his second overall, having earned the national honor in men’s soccer in 2010. In his eleventh season as head coach of the X-Women program , Kennedy led them to an undefeated 12-0 score. 0, a first place in the regular season standings and an SUA championship.

The X-Women who are the No. 3 seed in this week’s U SPORTS Championship were the only team in the country to win all of their regular season games and they have allowed just three goals allowed all season – one league and U SPORTS record – for a goals-against average of 0.25. They had a league-high nine shutouts this season and finished with 48 goals, second only to Ottawa in the country.

Kennedy becomes the first person to win national coach of the year in both men’s and women’s soccer. He is also the first winner of this national StFX award.

Other nominees:

  • RSEQ: José-Luis Valdés (McGill)
  • OUA: Dave McDowell (Queen’s)
  • CW: Jesse Symons (UBC)

The All-Canadian and All-Rookie teams were also announced Wednesday. The full list of winners follows.


Chantal Navert Award (player of the year): Katalin Tolnai, UBC

Rookie of the Year: Sarah Rollins, UBC

Student-Athlete Community Service Award: Hannah Miller, Trinity Western

Fox40 Coach of the Year: Graham Kennedy, StFX

First Team All-Canadians

Name School Pos Year Hometown Academic Program

Dakota Beckett UBC GK 2 Langley, BC Arts

Damaged Thomas Western D 3 London, Ont. Kinesiology

Stephanie Hill McGill D 3 Dollard des Ormeaux, Que. Physical therapy

Sarah Rollins UBC D 1 Toronto, Ont. Kinesiology

Mara Bouchard McGill MF 3 Granby, Que. Psychology

Daphnée Blouin Laval F 5 Quebec, Que. Design (Master)

Christina Gomes Guelph A 3 Bradford, Ont. Psychology

Cassandra Provost Ottawa F 3 Acton Vale, Que. Accounting

Alliyah Rowe Cape Breton F 4 Kitchener, Ont. Arts

Amanda Smith Acadia F 5 Ottawa, Ont. Education

Katalin Tolnai UBC F 4 Toronto, Ont. Unclassified

Second All-Canadian Team

Name School Pos Year Hometown Academic Program

Kirstin Tynan Queen’s GK 3 North Vancouver, BC Political Studies

Abby Steen StFX D 3 Stittsville, Ont. Business

Grace Hannaford Cape Breton MF 2 Hammonds Plains, NS Science

Jade Abreo McMaster MF 2 Mississauga, Ont. Life sciences

Kendra Couto Queen’s MF 2 Aylmer, Ont. Engineering

Sofia DiGiacomo Calgary MF 3 Calgary, Alta. Arts

Elsa Lessard Laval MF 2 Ste-Julie, Que. Business

Rachel Barlow Calgary F 4 Calgary, Alta. Kinesiology

Erika Bastien Montreal F 5 Repentigny, Que. Sports management

Sydney Kennedy StFX F 5 Fletchers Lake, NS Independent Student

Rookie team

Name School Pos Hometown Academic Program

Ellie Lancaster Cape Breton GK Fall River, NS Arts

Jenny Harrison Sherbrooke GK Sherbrooke, Que. Special education

Gabrielle Ferland Ottawa D Ottawa, Ont. International development and globalization

Julia Kittelson Calgary D Calgary, Alta. Arts

Florence Thibeault Laval D Repentigny, Que. Medicine

Sarah Rollins UBC D Toronto, Ont. Kinesiology

Cheyenne Bower StFX MF London, Ont. Human kinetics

Ravina Braich McMaster MF Oakville, Ont. A biomedical engineer. & Health Sciences

Tamara Djurisic Mont-Royal MF Edmonton, Alb. Physical education

Sara Ricciardelli Montreal MF Montreal, Que. Architecture

Cara Freeman Saint Mary’s F Halifax, NS Science

Leda Naihin Queen’s F Markham, Ont. Kinesiology

(Teams listed alphabetically by position. Teams are chosen without regard to position.)

Alec Dittman

"Web specialist. Social media ninja. Amateur food aficionado. Alcohol advocate. General creator. Beer guru."

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *