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Ten Sun Devils earn All-Academic Track & Field honors

August 05, 2011

The U.S. Track & Field, Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced the men’s and women’s selections to it’s 2011 Division I All-Academic Track & Field teams on August 3 and August 4, respectively, with 10 members of the Arizona State University track and field team named to the lists.

The national academic award is given annually to student-athletes that carry a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or better and have met at least one of the athletic criteria. Indoors, student-athletes must finish the regular season ranked in the national Top 96 in an individual event or in the Top 48 on a relay event while the outdoor qualification is that a student-athlete must have participated in any round of the NCAA Division I Track & Field Championships, which includes the NCAA Preliminary Round (Eugene, Ore.) and the NCAA Championship Final (Des Moines, Iowa). Each candidate also had to have completed one full academic year with a member institution.

Five women and five men from the Sun Devil program were honored this season, including Ben Engelhardt, who was selected for his third USTFCCCA track and field honor after receiving his first cross country academic award earlier this academic year. A track and field selection by the USTFCCCA in 2009, 2010 and 2011, Engelhardt recently graduated from ASU Magna Cum Laude with a BS in Psychology and another BS in Biochemistry.

The Sun Devils that joined Engelhardt on the men’s list, which was comprised of 420 student-athletes from 153 institutions, included first-time honorees Nick Happe and Jamie Sandys and second-time honorees John Kline and Daniel Lovell. Both Kline and Lovell were honored last year as well. All five men were honored by the Pac-10 for academic achievement during the track and field season while Engelhardt, Happe and Lovell also earned Pac-10 honors in cross country. Sandys (second team) and Engelhardt (third team) also were honored recently as CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-Americans.

Cj Navarro led the way this year for the women as she garnered her third career honor from the USTFCCCA after being named to it’s lists in 2009 and 2010 as well. An Academic All-Pac-10 First Team and Academic All-MPSF honoree in 2011, Navarro was joined by second-time honoree Samantha Henderson, who also earned the honor in 2010. Henderson also was selected for three other awards during the year as she was a CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-District VIII selection, as well as Academic All-Pac-10 Second Team and Academic All-MPSF. The final three Sun Devil women selected included Sarah Geren, Alycia Herring and Shaylah Simpson, each of which recently finished their first year in the collegiate ranks.

Engelhardt also made a little history for the men’s program as he became the first Sun Devil to earn USTFCCCA academic accolades in both cross country and track and field in the same academic year (2010-11). Previously, Brandon Bethke was the lone two-sport representative for the men as he earned honors during the 2009 track season before adding cross country accolades the following fall (2009 season.) Engelhardt also has collected three-consecutive honors (track-cross country-track), making him one of three Sun Devils to earn three or more in a row. Jenna Kingma leads the way with five in a row (2006 track-2007 cross country-2007 track-2008 cross country-2008 track) while Ali Kielty earned three in a row to close her career (2007 track-2008 cross country-2008 track).

Overall, including this year’s selections, the Sun Devil program has accumulated 85 USTFCCCA All-Academic honors (since 1999). Twenty-nine different women combined to earn 57 honors while 14 men have accounted for 28. Engelhardt, Bethke, Kingma, Kielty and Brooke Bennett are the only five Sun Devils to earn honors for the program in both cross country and track and field in their careers.

Institutions that have earned All-Academic Team status will be announced by the USTFCCCA next week with the men’s teams released on August 10 and the women on August 11.

2011 USTFCCCA All-Academic Honorees
Sun Devil Women (5)
Sarah Geren • 1st career honor
Samantha Henderson • 2nd career honor (2010, 2011)
Alycia Herring • 1st career honor
Cj Navarro • 3rd career honor (2009, 2010, 2011)
Shaylah Simpson • 1st career honor

Sun Devil Men (5)
Ben Engelhardt • 4th career honor (2009, 2010, 2011 TF & 2010 XC)
Nick Happe • 1st career honor
John Kline • 2nd career honor (2010, 2011)
Daniel Lovell • 2nd career honor (2010, 2011)
Jamie Sandys • 1st career honor