UNC Greensboro Athletics is celebrating another successful year both in the field and in the classroom.
For the 18th consecutive semester, UNCG Athletics had a GPA of more than 3.0 in Spring 2023 across 44 unique majors. This follows an overall department GPA in Fall 2022 of 3.32 with75% of student-athletes achieving a 3.0 GPA or higher.
There were 162 UNCG student-athletes named to the 2021-22 Southern Conference (SoCon) Academic Honor Roll,which consists of student-athletes with an average GPA of 3.0 or higher. Seventy-three student-athletes earned a Commissioners’ Medal with 37 earning a 4.0 GPA.
Chi Alpha Sigma, the first and only academic fraternity that recognizes four-year student-athletes for their athletic and academic successes, also welcomed 58 UNCG student-athletes. Seventeen student athletes were also inducted into the Golden Chain Honor Society – a UNCG specific organization that recognizes juniors and seniors for their academic achievement.
All 17 UNCG athletics teams received satisfactory marks in the latest Academic Progress Report (APR) scores from the NCAA. The most recent APRs are multiyear rates based on scores from 2018-19, 2019-20, 2020-21, and 2021-22 academic years.
The APR measures eligibility, graduation and retention each semester or academic term and provides a clear picture of the academic performance for each team in every sport.
“It is easy to follow along with our win and loss records,” stated Kristin Rusboldt, associate athletic director for student-athlete support services & diversity & intercultural engagement. “But the academic progress rate shows collectively how our department works together to support the success of our student-athletes. It is rewarding to see how the academic success of our students is showcased nationally.”
Men’s golf and women’s tennis both received a perfect APR score of 1,000 for the 2021-22 academic year.
This was the third-straight year that women’s tennis earned a perfect score and seventh time since 2004-05. This was the second-straight year that men’s golf has earned a perfect score and fourth time since 2004-05.
On the men’s side, UNCG had baseball, basketball, golf, tennis, and track & field above the national average, while on the women’s side, the Spartans had cross country, soccer, tennis, track & field, and volleyball above the national average.
UNCG is one of nine SoCon members that had at least one sport posting a perfect APR score of 1,000.
ALL DISTRICT HONORS
Several student-athletes across multiple teams also earned Academic All-District ® Honors from the College Sports Communicators (CSC). To be eligible, nominated student-athletes must be a starter or important reserve with a minimum 3.50 cumulative GPA in their second year and must have played at least 50 percent of the teams’ games. UNCG is part of District 3, which is comprised of Division I programs in North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.
Five softball players earned the recognition: 5th year Delaney Cumbie, senior Blayke Batten, junior Anna White, and sophomores Grace Loftin and Jessie Shipley. Six soccer players were also awarded for the first time in their career: seniors Maddy Gilhool, Eliza Radoll, and Gabi Santora along with juniors Parker Sikora and Dalani Stephens, and sophomore Chloe Lausell.
Two baseball players also earned the recognition: sophomore Kennedy Jones and senior Mitchell Smith, along with three volleyball players – senior Gabriela McHugh, junior Taylor Robertson, and sophomore Daija Jackson.
Men’s soccer goalkeeper Niclas Wild claimed Division I Men’s Soccer Academic All-American Team Member of the Year from the CSC. Fifth-year teammate Marco Milanese also collected Division I Academic All-American Second Team honors. Wild and Milanese are the sixth and seventh men’s soccer Academic All-Americans in UNCG history. The most recent was Noah DeAngelo in 2015, earning first team honors.
To be eligible, nominated student-athletes must be a starter or important reserve with a minimum 3.50 cumulative grade-point average in her second year at the current institution and must have played in at least 50 percent of the team’s games. All honorees are selected by a committee from the CSC who honors student-athletes from all three NCAA Divisions and the NAIA.
As UNCG softball took home the SoCon Tournament title – senior Ashley Gontram took on her own prize – the Pinnacle Award. The honor is given to the student-athlete of the championship team with the highest GPA.
MAKING AN IMPACT
The 2022-23 academic year was also a great year for community engagement among athletics with 2,102 hours of community engagement and service across the teams.
Baseball and men’s soccer partnered with Team IMPACT to adopt one child per team. Team IMPACT, a national non-profit organization, has developed a unique multiyear program that matches children facing serious illness and disability with college athletic teams across the country. The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and the UNCG Baseball team raised more than $3500 for a holiday toy drive.
Story by Avery Craine Powell, University Communications
Photography by UNCG Athletics and Sean Norona, University Communications
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