Stuttgart senior Eli Spencer and Bitburg junior Elise Rasmussen are the 2015-16 DODEA-Europe Athletes of the Year, DODEA-Europe athletic director Karen Seadore announced this week. The award recognizes athletes who excelled throughout the school year, including the organization’s fall, winter and spring seasons.

Spencer’s season was defined by his wrestling accomplishments. The senior pinned all of his opponents on the way to winning his second consecutive European championship at 195 pounds, earning All-America recognition and collecting Stars and Stripes wrestling Athlete of the Year honors. Spencer bookended his winter on the mats with key spots on the Stuttgart football and soccer teams; he was the defensive MVP in the Panthers’ football championship game win over Wiesbaden and earned All-Europe first-team honors.

Rasmussen starred for the Barons in volleyball, basketball and track and field. In the fall, she earned All-Tournament and All-Europe first-team honors on the volleyball court as Bitburg reached the Division II European championship match. She was equally outstanding on the basketball court in winter, again earning All-Tournament and All-Europe first-team recognition as Bitburg advanced to another European championship game. Rasmussen capped her season in the spring by dominating the strength events at the European championship track meet, where she took gold in the discus and shot put.

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