Men's Sports Sports Women's Sports

Ten Springfield College Athletes Earn All-Academic Honors For Winter Season

Greg Fitzpatrick
Staff Writer

Springfield College student-athletes are being recognized for their success in sports and inside the classroom. They must have a grade point average of at least 3.5 and be in their second year of eligibility.

Ten athletes have been awarded with NEWMAC All-Academic Honors for the winter. The list includes men’s and women’s swimming, men’s basketball and women’s basketball. For men’s swimming, Robert Stringfellow is the proud lone representative.

Also in the list is a pair of basketball players. Men’s player Nick Sienkiewicz and women’s player Meghan Biondolillo also had great success with their academics.

Women’s swimming is a far different story. Seven women’s swimmers represent the Pride. Kyra Breitweiser, Sandra Hornig, Mary Masayda, Kelsey Poole, Molly Potter, Kaitlin Simpson and Jennifer Thompson all have worked hard in both aspects in order to receive this prestigious award.

“It means so much to me to be selected as a NEWMAC All-Academic Honoree,” said Thompson.

It is not just the swimmers that are proud of this accomplishment. Head swimming and diving coach John Taffe also expresses just how important this is to the team.

“I can honestly say it’s more important than what we accomplish in the pool,” said Taffe.

Sienkiewicz was another student-athlete that was very proud of his accomplishment this winter season.

“Since I was young, I’ve always worked extremely hard in the classroom. For me to be recognized for all that hard work, it is truly an amazing and memorable honor,” said Sienkiewicz.

Sienkiewicz’s basketball coach, Charlie Brock, expressed why Sienkiewicz deserved this award. “He is the epitome of a student-athlete. With his difficult studies, he is hard-working and focused on what he is doing,” said Brock.

With the outcome of the awards, there is a mastermind behind the whole setup. Associate Director of Athletics, Kiki Jacobs, keeps track of everyone’s grades and selects the student-athletes that meet the NEWMAC standards.

It seems like Jacobs has not had many problems as of late. For the fall season of 2012, the average grade point average for the 820 fall athletes was a 3.18. That definitely meets Springfield College expectations.

The associate director of athletics has a simple goal for the student-athletes moving forward.

“I would want no one to be on academic probation and get that grade point average even higher,” said Jacobs.

This current success is also vital to potential recruits coming into Springfield College athletics in following years.

“It is a good recruiting tool. It shows that athletes can do academics as well,” said Jacobs.

This award not only gives these student-athletes recognition, but it also helps develop them into better leaders.

“I inspire my teammates to strive for the same goals as I do. I am always here to provide inspiration and help to those who ask for it,” Thompson added.

Sienkiewicz also mentioned how his hard work can allow him to become even more recognized, even beyond the awards.

“This honor exemplifies the amount of work I have put in on and off the court, which gives me the confidence to be a better leader,” said Sienkiewicz.

Jacobs is very proud of these young men and women, especially knowing how much stress this can put on someone.

“For the most part there is a lot of commitment. You really do need the degree,” said Jacobs.

The Springfield College community can’t be any more proud of these 10 athletes. The amazing thing is that more and more new student-athletes receive this award every season. In the spring we could see a handful of newcomers to this award. Student-athletes can make great leaders if they put in the right amount of hard work, both on and off the playing field.

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