CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M – Corpus Christi women's cross country team has been named 2011 Division I All-Academic Cross Country, the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced today. The Islanders possess a cumulative 3.08 team GPA as of the Fall 2011 semester.
"It's a great honor to receive the award," head coach Shawn Flanagan said. "You have to be one of the best athletic and academic programs in the nation to get this award. I'm very proud of what the women have done in the classroom and on the competition field. This is a real cherry on top of the conference title."
The Islanders won their fourth team Southland title in the last five years last season, edging UTSA by five points at the Southland Conference Championships on Oct. 31. Kristine Burciaga led the way for the Islanders at the Championships, taking second place with a time of 21:53.3. The Islanders had five of the top 26 overall finishers at the event.
In the classroom, the team had a stellar semester as well, led by Melissa Jones and her cumulative 4.0 grade-point average. In the fall semester, Jones was one of five members of the team to post a perfect GPA, as she wasjoined by Sarah Kimaiyo, Jasmine Boutte, Marie Eulitz and Shelby Polasek.
To qualify as a USTFCCCA All-Academic Cross Country Team, the teammust have had a cumulative team GPA of 3.00 or better and have started at least five runners at their respective NCAA regional championship. It is the second time in the last three years that the Islanders have been honored with the recognition. Fellow Southland members UTSA, Lamar, McNeese State and Stephen F. Austin were also honored by the organization.
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