FORT IRWIN, Calif.-With their friends, Family and fellow Soldiers looking on, a group of Blackhorse Troopers proudly accepted their award for winning the U.S. Army Forces Command level of the Phillip A. Connelly Cup Competition at Fort Irwin, Calif., Nov. 12.

The team placed first in the Active Army Field Kitchen category of the annual competition. The Soldiers were personally awarded by Gen. James Thurman, FORSCOM commanding general. Thurman congratulated each member of the team and praised their hard work and dedication to their craft.

"It is an honor for me to come out and present awards for participating in a competition for excellence," Thurman said. "The Phillip A. Connelly competition makes you proud of what you do in the field of food service."

Thurman stressed the importance of food service in the military.

"If you go back in our history, that's probably one of the most important things you can do for your Soldiers, is to give them good food," he said. "That's what keeps Soldiers happy."

During the presentation, two Soldiers were given the individual Outstanding Performance Award their contribution to the event; Spc. Joseph Roshannon and Sgt. Mike Natividad, both of Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, Regimental Support Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment.

Roshannon, a native of Pottsville, Pa., received the award on his individual merits, although he credits his team for the success.

"This was on the judges' eyes, not mine," Roshannon said. "It was a team effort, it wasn't just me, if it wasn't for them, this wouldn't be possible."

The food service Soldier said he felt proud to be a member of winning team, who is gunning for their second consecutive Department of the Army level win. The field kitchen team was evaluated by DA-level judges in early November and are awaiting results.

"I think things went very well, no flaws," Roshannon said. "We did our part, now we just have to go wait."

The other individual award winner, Natividad, served as a field sanitation noncomissioned officer during the competition and this was his first time winning the award.

"This is my first time, this is great, it's something new," said Natividad, a native of Alta Loma, Calif. "My guys and I are in field sanitation so we're proud to be a part of it, it's a great experience."

During the presentation, Thurman also presented the FORSCOM CG's First Place for Supply Excellence to the 1916th Support Battalion's Movement Control Company, and Honorable Mention to the 58th Combat Engineer Company, RSS.

"My complements to you for your pride, sense of duty and sense of excellence," Thurman said. "My hat is off to you."