NEW HAVEN, Conn. (March 17, 2016) – Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Commissioner Dan Mara on Thursday announced that a record 46 student-athletes were named to the 2015-16 Winter All-Academic Team for the league’s two winter championship sports (men’s and women’s basketball).
The new total breaks the old mark of 44, which was set last season during the 2014-15 year. Overall, it is the third-consecutive year a record number of student-athletes received winter all-academic status, as the streak began in 2013-14 when 39 individuals received the recognition.
Women’s basketball led the championship sports with 31 honorees, while men’s basketball produced 15. Twelve (12) of 46 were named to the Winter All-Academic Team for the second time in their career, while seven were honored for the third time.
In order to be named to the CACC Winter All-Academic Team, recipients must have participated in a CACC Championship sport in the winter. They must be at least a sophomore academically and athletically, have been a student-athlete at their current school for at least two semesters, and achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.50 or higher through the fall semester of 2015.
Seventeen (17) individuals earned at least a 3.80 GPA or higher (up 7 from last year's total of 10), including a pair -- Georgian Court University men’s basketball's Luka Zgonjanin and Philadelphia University women's basketball's Kelsey Jones -- who own perfect 4.00 marks. Zgonjanin is a business administration major, while Jones majors in psychology. It marked the second conference academic award for Jones in the last two weeks, as she received the CACC Women's Basketball Championship Top XV Award back on March 3 for having the highest cumulative GPA at the league championship.
The other individuals to earn 3.80 or higher GPAs include Brian Kenny 3.97 (Caldwell University), Sean Dougherty 3.91 (Chestnut Hill College), Jakov Pilic 3.81 (Georgian Court), Mike Louden 3.98 (Philadelphia), Matt Mareno 3.87 (Post University), Kristen Drogsler 3.98 (Caldwell), Rebecca Gordon 3.83 (Concordia College), Jacqueline Rywalt 3.86 (Dominican College), Mikila Stefanski 3.82 (Goldey-Beacom College), Taylor Walker 3.93 (Holy Family University), Erin Rafter 3.87 (Philadelphia), Jocelyn Rodriguez 3.84 (Wilmington University), Emily McCann 3.92 (Post), Sarah Abbonizio 3.92 (University of the Sciences) and Laura Trisch 3.85 (USciences).
Louden joined Jones as a Top XV Award winner during the winter, as he claimed the honor at the men's basketball championship earlier this month.
Four student-athletes named to the All-Academic Team were also named to the All-CACC Basketball Team in their respective sport in late February following the conclusion of the regular season. Philadelphia standout Peter Alexis was named to his third CACC Winter All-Academic Team after picking up men's basketball player-of-the-year and All-CACC First-Team honors following the regular season. The other individuals to earn both All-Academic and All-CACC honors include Tori Arnao (PhilaU, All-CACC 1st Tm), Erin Fenningham (HFU, All-CACC 2nd Tm) and Drogsler (All-CACC 2nd Tm).
The Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference is an NCAA Division II Conference composed of 14 institutions in Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The member institutions are Bloomfield College, Caldwell University, Chestnut Hill College, Concordia (N.Y.) College, Dominican (N.Y.) College, Felician University, Georgian Court University, Goldey-Beacom College, Holy Family University, Nyack College, Philadelphia University, Post University of Waterbury, University of the Sciences, and Wilmington University.