COLUMBUS, Ohio – Catherine Shields of the Ohio State rowing team and Kyle Snyder of the Buckeye wrestling squad were named the 2015-16 Ohio State Female and Male Athletes of the Year, respectively. The duo will be placed on the ballots for the Big Ten Female and Male Athlete of the Year awards.
For a complete list of Ohio State Male and Female Athletes of the Year, click here.
Shields, a two-time Big Ten Rowing Athlete of the Year and the 2014 Ohio State Female Athlete of the Year, is the sixth two-time winner of the award in school history. A native of Rangiora, New Zealand, Shields won four individual national titles and four Big Ten titles as a Buckeye while compiling a glistening 172-2 overall record over four seasons. This season, she led the First Varsity Eight to a Big Ten title, history-making third-consecutive NCAA title and an overall record of 46-2 (12-2 races). A three-time NCAA team champion and four-time Big Ten team champion with the Buckeyes, she is the first three-time First Team All-America selection in school history, as a well as a three-time All-Central Region and All-Big Ten selection. In April, she received the prestigious Big Ten Medal of Honor for her work in both athletics and academics.
The women’s rowing team has now claimed Ohio State Female Athlete of the Year honors in each of the last four seasons. Claire-Louise Bode was a winner in 2013, followed by Shields, Ashley Bauer and Shields once again.
A sophomore from Woodbine, Md., Snyder (11-0) was the 2016 Big Ten and NCAA champion at heavyweight, helping Ohio State to a third-place finish at both the Big Ten and NCAA Championships. Along the way, he was dominant, picking up eight of his 11 wins by either fall, technical fall or major decision. He scored 20 points on seven occasions, averaged 18.6 points/match and was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the NCAA Championships. Snyder was also a finalist for the Dan Hodge Trophy, considered the Heisman Trophy of college wrestling.
In the NCAA finals, Snyder knocked off two-time defending champion Nick Gwiazdowski of N.C. State in overtime, ending his 88-match winning streak. Last fall, he became the youngest World champion in U.S. wrestling history and originally intended to redshirt the 2015-16 campaign before deciding at midseason to return to take a shot at winning a NCAA title. Just three weeks after his college season ended, Snyder defeated 2012 Olympic goal medalist Jake Varner twice at the Olympic Team Trials to earn a spot at this summer’s Olympic Games on Rio.
It is the third straight year a wrestler has been named the Ohio State Male Athlete of the Year, joining Logan Stieber (2014, 2015). Current assistant coach J Jaggers also earned the honor in 2009.