Kelsey Wog of the University of Manitoba Bisons swim team has been named the winner of the 2020 Lieutenant Governor Athletic Award. The distinction is presented annually to USports’ (Canadian collegiate athletics) top female and male athletes. Earlier in the year, Wog was announced as a finalist for the award when she became Canada West Female Athlete of the Year. From there, she beat out the University of Toronto’s Lucia Stafford (Cross Country), Laval’s Fabiola Forteza (Rugby), and the University of Prince Edward Island’s Jenna Mae Ellsworth (Basketball) for 2020’s top honor.
Among her accomplishments in the 2019-2020 season, Wog picked up four individual gold medals at the 2020 USports Championships, along with 3 meets records;
- 50 breaststroke (LCM) – 31.21
- 100 breaststroke (LCM) – 1:06.44 (meet record)
- 200 breaststroke (LCM) – 2:22.42 (meet record)
- 200 IM (LCM) – 2:10.87 (meet record)
For her 4 victories in 4 swims performance at this meet, Wog was named the Female Swimmer of the Meet.
Prior to this performance at USport national champs, Wog’s year was highlighted by a 6th place finish in the 200 breaststroke at 2019 World Championships, and a 3rd place team finish in the first-ever ISL finale with the Cali Condors. Going into the 2020/2021 ISL season Wog has been announced as a member of the new Toronto Titans team, along with fellow Canadians Emily Overholt, Penny Oleksiak, and Kylie Masse.
With no in-person award ceremony this year, Wog got a chance to share an acceptance speech from home which can be watched here.
“It is such an honor to be named Female USport Athlete of the Year. I am so grateful for all the experiences and opportunities that I have gotten because of sport. Sport has taught me so much. It has taught me about trust, patience, and persistence and has helped me become the person that I am today” says Wog.
On the men’s side, the Lieutenant Governor Athletic Award went to Aboubacar Sissoko of the University of Montreal men’s soccer team who led the Carabins to a second-place finish at this season’s national championships.
Of Wog and Sissoko, USports interim CEO, Dick White said: “We are proud of your extensive accomplishments on the soccer pitch, in the swimming pool, and in the classroom and look forward to watching you become leaders both in the community and in the next stage of your athletic careers.”
- Read USports’ full press release here.
Since the award’s 1993 reception, Wog is the 5th swimmer to win and joins 5 former Canadian Olympians:
- Kylie Masse, University of Toronto (2015-2016)
- Annamay Pierse, University of British Columbia (2008-2009)
- Elizabeth Warden, University of Toronto (2001-2002)
- Brian Johns, University of British Columbia (2001-2002)
- Curtis Myden, University of Calgary (1996-1997)
Wog is also the second winner ever from the University of Manitoba to win the award, following basketball player Terri-Lee Johannesson who won the award for the 1996/1997 season.