At the end of each W-League season, team awards are presented in the categories of: Humanitarian of the Year, Most Promising Player, Unsung Hero, Golden Boot, and Player of the Year. The award winners are selected by head coach Jesse Symons and the technical staff, and for the Player of the Year, the winner is selected by fans. Here are the 2012 winners:
Humanitarian of the Year
Penelope Hughes – Hughes, 25, a native of Courtney, British Columbia joined the Blue and White for the first time in 2012. The defender made several community appearances this season including Whitecaps FC camps, school visits, and attended every pre-game clinic before Whitecaps FC Women’s home games. The Courtney native always had time for autographs and pictures with supporters. Penelope Hughes is this year’s Humanitarian of the Year.
Most Promising Player
Jenna Richardson – Richardson, 20, a native of Surrey, British Columbia returned for her third season with the ‘Caps this year. The young striker was given a predominant role this season leading the Blue and White attack at the top of coach Symons 4-4-2 formation. Richardson tallied four goals this season in nine appearances for the ‘Caps. Richardson has also been a key member of Canada’s U-20 team and will be looked upon in the future to not only help the ‘Caps but her country as well. Jenna Richardson is the ‘Caps Most Promising Player.
Danielle Johnson – Johnson, 24, a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana joined the ‘Caps for her first season in 2012. The defender was a constant on the back line as she started all matches for the Blue and White. Formerly with Sky Blue FC of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS), Johnson was relied upon by the coaching staff for her leadership abilities and calming influences on the pitch. These qualities were no more evident than when she held Canadian captain Christine Sinclair at bay for 90 minutes in a friendly between Whitecaps FC and the Canadian Women’s National Team. Danielle Johnson is the team’s Unsung Hero.
Mele French – French, 28, a native of Mililani, Hawaii led the ‘Caps in scoring in her first year with the club. French a former WPS veteran, was relied upon heavily along with striking partner Jenna Richardson to spearhead the Blue and White’s offensive attack. The striker scored five goals for the club. French’s best performance of the season came in a match against LA Strikers in Coquitlam where she netted two goals to help lead the ‘Caps to their first victory of the season. Mele French is this year’s winner of the Golden Boot.
Player of the Year (As voted by fans)
Jenna Richardson –Jenna Richardson is the 2012 Player of the Year, as voted by fans. The Oregon State University product had a fine season for Whitecaps FC generating quality chances every match. One of the highlights of her season was being one of the only players able to score on the stingy Western Conference champion Pali Blues squad that only allowed three goals against all season long. Fans could always count on Richardson’s pace, work ethic, and flare for the dramatic every time she stepped onto the pitch. Jenna Richardson is this year’s Player of the Year.