On Friday November 24, JCUSA Sport & Recreation hosted their 2023 JCUSA Sport Blues Awards which recognises outstanding sporting achievements from JCU Students throughout 2023.
Blues Awards are broken into two groups – Blue & Half Blue.
- Blue – Students who have participated at a state or national level with distinction.
- Half Blue – Students who have participated at a high level with distinction including local or state.
In total 10 students received awards including 6 students who receive a half-blue and 4 who received a full Blue.
In addition to these awards, JCUSA Sport & Recreation also handed out the JCU Spirit of Sport Award which recognizes the commitment and involvement in our programs, Small Club of the Year, Club of the Year, Team of the Year and JCUSA Sportsperson of the Year.
Here are the following award recipients:
JCUSA Sportsperson of the Year & Blue Award Recipient – Maggie Monckton: Triathlon
Maggie is currently a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery course based at JCU Cairns. Maggie competed in the 2023 Cairns Ironman 70.3 competition finishing 1st in her age group and 6thoverall. Maggie’s time of 4:44:47 was enough for her to qualify for the World Championships in Lahti, Finland. At the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Finland, Maggie was the first Australian and 30th overall in her age group to complete the course. Maggie’s performances at this event along with standardised testing have also seen her selected in the YouFor2032 program in Triathlon. The YouFor2032 Talent Identification Program has been designed but the Queensland Academy of Sport to identify the next generation of elite athletes. The aim is to develop and nurture young Queensland talents who have the potential to compete at the Brisbane 2032 Olympic Games.
Blue Award Recipient – Victoria Bonyhai: Ultimate Disc
Victoria is currently studying a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery at JCU in Townsville. Victoria represented the Queensland side at the U22 National Ultimate Disc Championships held in Beenleigh. From that tournament, Victoria was selected in the U22 Nationals Green and Gold Australian Merit Team where she was the only QLD woman to be selected in the team of the tournament. In addition to representing Queensland, Victoria also represented JCU in mixed ultimate disc at 2023 UniSport Nationals on the Gold Coast.
Blue Award Recipient – Georgia Chambers: Triathlon
Georgia is currently studying a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery at JCU in Townsville. Georgia has competed to a high standard across multiple states over the past 12 months. Georgia finished 1st overall in the Townsville Triathlon Club Aquathon Series , 1st overall in her age bracket at the Townsville Triathlon Festival Sprint Duathlon and was first overall at the Townsville Triathlon Festival Sprint Triathlon. Georgia also competed at a high level in Tasmania finishing 3rd overall at the Greens Beach Triathlon and 1st overall in the junior female category at the Bridport Triathlon and the Seven Mile Beach State Triathlon.
Blue Award Recipient – Curtis James: Hockey
Curtis is currently studying a Bachelor of Engineering at JCU in Townsville. As a goalkeeper, Curtis represented the Townsville side at the Hockey Queensland Championships in Brisbane helping the team to a Bronze Medal. From that tournament, Curtis was selected to represent the Queensland Country side at the Australian Country Championships in Shepparton where he helped Queensland win a Bronze Medal. Curtis from that tournament was selected into the Australian Country team to compete in early 2024. Outside of competing, Curtis is also coaching the next generation of goalkeepers within the region.
JCUSA Sportsperson of the Year & Half-Blue Award Recipient – Stephanie Luyt: Football
Stephanie is currently studying a Bachelor of Business and Bachelor of Law at JCU in Townsville. At the beginning of 2023, Stephanie was selected from a National’s tournament to represent the Australian Open Futsal Women’s team to a planned tour in Malaysia. Throughout the year, Stephanie has been competing in the Women’s Townsville Premier League Football competition where she scored 10 goals and won 7 Player of the Match Performances and was selected in Football Queensland’s Women’s Townsville Premier League Team of the Season.
Half-Blue Award Recipient – Jordyn Cameron: Hockey
Jordyn is currently studying a Bachelor of Nursing and Midwifery at JCU in Townsville. In 2023, Jordyn was part of the Commercials side that won the Division 1 Premiers Townsville Women’s Hockey Competition. In addition, Jordyn represented the Townsville women’s open team at the Queensland Championships in Brisbane. From that competition, Jordyn was selected in Queensland Country Championships side that won Gold at the National Championships in Shepparton.
Half-Blue Award Recipient – Rachel Karpinski: Volleyball
Rachel is currently studying a Master’s of Marine Biology at JCU in Townsville. In indoor volleyball, Rachel has competed throughout Queensland this year claiming Gold at the NQ Cup competition, Monsoons Premier League Tournament and 1st at the Country Championship tournament. Rachel was also part of the Monsoons team who won 3rd at the Queensland State Championships. Rachel also represented JCU in indoor volleyball at the 2023 UniSport Nationals competition on the Gold Coast. Outside of indoor volleyball, Rachel has also competed in beach volleyball including the April Fool’s Tournament, Townsville and Mackay Great Barrier Reef Challenge and the QBVT Cairns competition.
Half-Blue Award Recipient – Murray Macpherson: Distance Running/Multisport
Murray is currently studying a Bachelor of Dental Surgery at JCU in Cairns. Murray competed across both distance running and multisport disciplines across the Cairns region. Murray competed in the Cairns Marathon where he finished 1st overall in his age group and 13th overall, 4th overall at The Great Pyramid Race held in Gordonvale and 1st overall in his age group and 3rd overall in the K2PD Ultra Marathon Trail Race. Murray also finished 1st Overall in the Adventure Sport NQ Speewah Legend 17km race, 1st in the ONA Mission Multisport event coming in 13 mins quicker than second place and 1st overall in the Grin and Bear It MultiSport Race finishing 43 minutes ahead of the next competitor.
Half-Blue Award Recipient – Anna Peckham: Aquathon
Anna is currently studying a Master’s of Science in Marine Biology at JCU in Townsville. Anna competed across the Townsville Tri Club Aquathon competition. In the first competition, Anna finished 1st in her age group and 5th in the women’s overall. In the second event, Anna placed 1st in her age group and 3rd in the women’s overall meanwhile in the final event, Anna placed 1st in both her age group and in the women’s overall. In addition, Anna has also competed in various trail running events with her best performance being at the Magnetic Island Two Bays event finishing 1st overall in her age group and 7th overall in the women’s division and also represented JCU in the beach volleyball mixed fours team at 2023 UniSport Nationals on the Gold Coast.
Half-Blue Award Recipient – Ashley Thomas: Athletics
Ashley is currently studying a Bachelor of Sport and Exercise Science at JCU in Townsville. Throughout 2023, Ashley won a variety of local competitions in the discus event including the Sunset Series, Coral Coast and NQ Championships in both the U20 and open competitions. Ashley would go onto compete at the QLD State Athletics Championships winning Gold in the U20 Discus event throwing a season best of 51.68m. Ashley would also go on to compete at the Australian Athletics Championships finishing 6th in the U20 competition. Currently Ashley is ranked 5th in Australia for the U20 Discus as per Athletics Australia’s Rankings.
JCU Spirit of Sport Award – Shannon Wong
Shannon has been a great contributor to JCUSA Sport & Recreation in 2023. Has been a great advocate for both indoor and beach volleyball at JCU. As the secretary of the JCU Townsville Beach Volleyball Club, Shannon has help improve the participation of beach volleyball at JCU including organizing introduction sessions for new members, helping recruit students to compete at UniSport Nationals as well as officiating competitions such as Winna Shield or other beach volleyball related activities for JCU departments. In addition, Shannon also played a major part in organizing and recruiting students to represent JCU in indoor volleyball at UniSport Nationals. This included organizing training venues, match preparation and coaching.
JCUSA Small Club of the Year – JCU Townsville Beach Volleyball Club
The interest in beach volleyball on campus at JCU continues to grow in part due to the JCU Townsville Beach Volleyball Club. The club this year started coaching sessions for beginner and intermediate users as well as their own events on campus in 2023. The club has also competed in various events throughout Queensland including the Queensland Volleyball State Tour and UniSport Nationals putting the clubs name on the map throughout Queensland.
JCUSA Club of the Year – Riverway JCU Football Club
The Riverway JCU Football Club continues to be heavily involved with JCU as the club was involved with JCUSA Sport & Recreation amongst programs such as Winna Shield, Interfaculty Sport and JCU Uni v Army with providing officials, coaching and operating the canteen. In addition, the club were a big factor in helping JCU send a men’s football team to UniSport Nationals this year. As a club, they continue to grow with more senior and junior players joining the club which has increased the number of senior and junior teams within the club. With improved performances as well at senior level, the club is fast becoming the club to play for in Townsville.
JCUSA Coach of the Year – Matthew Aubrey: Football
Matthew Aubrey played a major role in the success of the Riverway JCU Football Club. Matthew has brought a whole new level of competitiveness to the club to ensure the men’s senior side is not making up the numbers in the Townsville Premier League. In addition to his involvement with the club, Matthew also was the coach of the Men’s Football team at UniSport Nationals. As part of that team, Matthew committed a significant amount of time to help the team in the lead up to the event including warm up games, video sessions and overall professionalism to the team building a great foundation for future JCU Men’s Football teams.
JCUSA Team of the Year – JCU Women’s Pairs Beach Volleyball Team
The JCU women’s pair beach volleyball team features the pairing of Shannon Wong and Irish Espanola. This year the pair won Silver for JCU at UniSport Nationals held on the Gold Coast. The pair also represented JCU at North Queensland Games winning gold as well. In addition, Shannon and Irish also competed at the Queensland Beach Volleyball Tour where they finished 1st in the Challenger Division.
Congratulations to all award recipients and we look forward to hold this event in 2024.