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May 31, 2013

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Old Dominion University sailing senior skipper and team captain Dillon Paiva was named the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA)’s Sportsman of the Year on Thursday evening during the annual ICSA awards banquet at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club while junior crew Chloe Constants earned ICSA Crew All-America status.

Paiva (Raleigh, N.C.) has been a staple in the Old Dominion sailing program having been the A-Division skipper in each of his past three seasons. On Thursday evening, he was awarded the Robert H. Hobbs Sportsmanship Award, which annually goes to the ICSA’s Sportsman of the Year. The trophy honors Robert Hobbs (MIT, '64), past Executive Vice President of ICSA, past President of U.S. Sailing (1992-1994), and former chair of the U.S. Sailing Olympic Committee.

Paiva becomes just the second Old Dominion sailor ever to earn the award as he joins Samantha Ficksman, who was named the ICYRA Sportsman of the Year in 1995-96.

“The sportsmanship award in unique because it is the one award you can’t attempt to win,” said Paiva. “I want to thank my family, my coaches, Old Dominion University and most importantly my competitors. The plaque and certificate were great but afterwards when all of my competitors came and shook my hand, telling me that I earned the award and that they were proud of me and that it was a pleasure to compete against me for four years, that made it the best night of my life. I am truly honored to be this year’s recipient of the Robert H. Hobbs Outstanding Sportsman of the Year award.”

After earning First Team All-MAISA for coed skippers last month, Paiva and the Monarchs earned their best result of the season in the coed dinghy national semifinals with a second place finish in Hampton.

Constants (Annapolis, Md.) has been paired with Paiva in each of the last two seasons and earned All-MAISA Crew honors last month. It marks the third consecutive year that Old Dominion has earned All-America crew honors.

“I am incredibly honored to be selected as an All-American crew,” said Constants. “I am humbled that the coaches and other sailors find me deserving of such an award. I’ve always prided myself on making each skipper I practiced and sailed with the best they can be. More importantly, I also owe this award to Dillon, because without him I wouldn’t be the crew that I am. This was the best way to end my last season with him and I am anxious for what next season has in store. ”

The tandem of Paiva and Constants helped power Old Dominion to a ninth place finish in the ICSA/Gill Coed Dinghy National Championships this week in St. Petersburg, which was ODU’s best outcome since they took fourth in San Francisco in 2009.

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