ST. LOUIS– SIUE men's soccer alumnus Keegan McHugh has won the 2019 Jack Blake Award, the most prestigious individual honor awarded to an SIUE men's soccer player.
The award was presented at the annual JBA Banquet at the Missouri Athletic Club Friday. The Jack Blake Award was established in 1997 by Blake's friend and teammate Tim Tighe, and his wife, Lynn. The award is given annually to the student-athlete who most embodies the qualities that defined Blake.
"This is an incredible event especially for a lot of the new players and for myself who haven't been here before," First-year Head Coach Cale Wasserman said. "We have heard the stories, but it's important to hear them first hand from the people who helped build this program."
Since Tim Tighe's passing in 2018 following a lengthy battle with cancer, Jack Blake Award winner Ryan Stoddart '01 has taken over the administering of the Jack Blake Award.
McHugh, a native of St. Charles, Missouri, completed his career in 2018 after appearing in 74 games and making 67 starts. He was a two-time All-Missouri Valley Conference selection and All-Tournament selection in 2016. McHugh is the 23rd recipient of the award.
Chris Carenza '74 gave the keynote speech at the event. Carenza, and SIUE Athletics Hall of Famer, is No. 3 on SIUE's all-time goals and scoring list with 46 goals and 106 points. Carenza currently is a Prosecutor in the St. Louis City Counselor's Office.
Stoddart also presented the Tim Tighe SIUE Soccer Alumni Service and Leadership Award. The award, which was established in 2017 by former SIUE Director of Athletics Brad Hewitt, is presented to an outstanding men's soccer alumnus. Tim Loughman '84 was presented with the 2019 award. Loughman was inducted into the SIUE Athletics Hall of Fame Saturday as part of the 1982 men's soccer team.
"The people who have come before us did such an incredible job not only on the soccer field, but in how they affected the campus and the community," Wasserman said. Those are two guys that I was fortunate enough to start to build relationships with as early as my interview process," Wassermann said of McHugh and Loughman. "What they've done in their time as athletes and since is incredible and they are both inspirations to our current players on the team."