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Monarch Park CI's Penny Oleksiak Named Canada's Athlete of the Year

Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Categories: Happenings @ TDSB

Monarch Park Collegiate student, Penny Oleksiak is the winner of the Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada's athlete of the year.

Selected by a panel of over two dozen sports journalists across the country, the Lou Marsh award and title of Canada’s best athlete is handed out annually. The award is named for Lou Marsh, a former sports editor of the Toronto Star.

Oleksiak was in the middle of law class when she found out the news. "The first thing I told my teacher when I walked into class was that I would be on my phone ... and that I was just watching out for something on Twitter," Oleksiak told the CBC. "So she let me on my phone during that class. She called me out a few times to search something on Google. “

Oleksiak was up against a roster of great Canadian athletes including Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby, Olympic sprinter Andre De Grasse, golfer Brooke Henderson, Paralympic swimmer Aurelie Rivard, tennis player Milos Raonic and Olympic high jumper Derek Drouin.

In the same interview, Oleksiak told the CBC. "I was super excited to be on a list with such great athletes because I was with Andre De Grasse and so many other athletes that I've looked up to for so long and I was just excited to be on the list, let alone win."

As one of the youngest athletes to ever win the Lou Marsh Trophy, Oleksiak joins the list of other Canadian sporting legends including Wayne Gretzky, Terry Fox, Donovan Bailey, and Steve Nash to name a few.

At 16, Oleksiak was the youngest member of Canada’s 2016 Olympic team in Rio de Janeiro. Besides setting a new Olympic record in the 100m freestyle, she also set a national record in the 100m butterfly, finishing in 56.46 seconds. Her four medals are the most by any Canadian athlete at a single Summer Games.

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