Cross Country Teams Net Academic Honors
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Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University men's and women's cross country teams not only had a successful season on the course, but also were productive in the classroom.
Both the FSU men's and women's teams have been honored as United States Track and Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division II All-Academic Teams for the 2009 season as announced today by the professional organization.
The Bulldog women were among eight Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) programs to receive the distinction as FSU recorded an overall team grade point average of 3.41 for the fall term.
Meanwhile, the men's team was one of seven GLIAC member institutions on the list of all-academic teams with a grade point average of 3.28 as a team.
For a team to be considered for the USTFCCCA All-Academic Team award, they must have competed and compiled a team score at an NCAA Regional Championship and also have a minimum 3.00 team cumulative GPA.
As a league, the GLIAC ranked second in the total number of conference teams honored in both men's and women's cross country at the Division II level.
Individually, the Bulldog women's program also had five student-athletes recognized as 2009 USTFCCCA Division II Cross Country All-Academic honorees. They included juniors Tina Muir and Paige Onweller along with a trio of freshmen in Shelby Janutol, Alyssa Osika and Anna Rudd.
To qualify for All-Academic honors, a student-athlete must have completed at least 12 semester/quarter hours through the semester of competition at the institution to be eligible. The student-athlete must have at least a 3.25 cumulative grade point average and have placed in the top 30% of the total number of athletes eligible to compete at the respective regional championships or have placed in the top 50% of the field at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships.
The Ferris women's cross country team ran to a 11th-place team finish while tying for the second-highest finish in school history during the 2009 NCAA Division II National Championships last fall (Nov. 21) in Evansville, Ind. FSU previously had secured its national championships berth by running to a third-place team finish in the NCAA-II Midwest Regional Championships held Nov. 7 in Kenosha, Wis. The Bulldog women placed third in the regional for the second-straight campaign.
This year also represented only the fourth time in history the Bulldog women's cross country team had qualified as a team for the national championships as last year's berth was the program's first appearance since 1987.
Meanwhile, the FSU men's team took eighth place in the field of 19 competing teams at last fall's regional championships with 249 points.
Both FSU teams are guided by second-year head coach Steve Picucci.