April 9, 2010
PHILADELPHIA - Senior Garrett Williamson was presented with the John P. Hilferty Memorial Award, as the Most Valuable Player of the Saint Joseph's University basketball team. The presentation was made at the 55th annual SJU Men's Basketball Awards Banquet held at the Campion Banquet Facility on campus.
Williamson was also the recipient of the Robert F. O'Neill Award as the team's Most Improved Player, earning the award for the second time. The team captain had the best offensive season of his career in 2009-10 as he averaged 12.1 points per game, while topping the Hawks in assists (3.9), steals (1.7) and free throw percentage (76.7).
Former SJU standouts John Griffin and Bill Phillips were inducted into the Saint Joseph's Basketball Hall of Fame at the banquet. Griffin served as head coach of the Hawks from 1990-95 and compiled a 75-69 record in five seasons. Taking over in 1990-91, he guided the Hawks to 13 wins in each of his first two seasons, and to an 18-11 record in 1992-93, which ended a four-year streak of sub-.500 campaigns. Griffin, who played for SJU from 1974-78, led the Hawks to NIT appearances in 1993 and 1995 as a coach.
Phillips played from 1999 to 2002 and was one of the top scholar-athletes in SJU basketball history. In three years with the Hawks Phillips scored 1,007 points to rank 47th on the all-time scoring list, and grabbed 686 rebounds to rank 22nd all-time. Phillips was named to the Atlantic 10 All-Conference and All-Big 5 teams in both his junior and senior years, earning second-team recognition on both squads in 2002. He is also the only Hawk to be named an Academic All-America, earning honors in both 2001 and 2002.
Of the current Hawks, sophomore Todd O'Brien received the George Senesky Memorial Academic Award for outstanding academic achievement. The Patrick D. O'Pake Memorial Award for the team's Unsung Hero was given to senior C.J. Brown, while senior Darrin Govens was the recipient of the William F. Maher Memorial Award for loyalty.
The William J. Bennett Memorial Award, recognizing dedication and service to SJU basketball, was given to Brienne Ryan, a senior who served as the Hawk mascot this season. The Daniel J. Cummins, Jr. Award for spirit was awarded to senior managers Brittany Keesling and Molly Porth.
The Michael J. Conway Memorial Award for persons who have given back to the University was presented to former Hawk mascot Pat McGrory (1994). The Emory Ross Sixth Man Award was presented to Saint Joseph's student Mike Venafra to recognize his support of the Hawks.