University of Tennessee

Sports mentoring program is training women leaders from around the world

Sarah Hillyer has a global vision that keeps her on the move. In any given year, you may find her in China or Ecuador or Iran leading initiatives designed to empower women through sports.

Volunteer Training

Tennessee rower Jennifer Davis, while visiting Vietnam as part of her school’s VOLeaders Academy, experienced a moment that continues to resonate.

Tennessee’s Joan Cronan to receive Pat Summitt Award

Joan Cronan has been named the first recipient of the newly established NCAA President’s Pat Summitt Award. GETTY IMAGES Joan Cronan, former women’s athletics director at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has been named the first...

It’s just time

This spring, Tamika Catchings will release her first full-length memoir. Written with author Ken Petersen, “Catch a Star: Shining Through Adversity To Become a Champion” tells the basketball star’s story of overcoming obstacles throughout life to achieve success on and off the court.

5 research grants funded for graduate students

The NCAA Research Committee selected five research proposals to fund as part of the 2015 cycle of the NCAA Graduate Student Research Grant Program.

Dressed for Success

Shyra Ely-Gash has two passions in life: basketball and fashion. On the court, Ely-Gash played in four Final Fours for the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. But she also grew up circling clothing she liked in magazines, and earned a bachelor’s degree in fashion merchandising.

2008 NCAA Woman of the Year

 

Tennessee’s Anosike selected as NCAA Woman of the Year

The NCAA News, October 20, 2008

2008 NCAA Woman of the Year - Nkolika Anosike

Nkolika “Nicky” Anosike, a self-described role player for the two-time defending NCAA champion Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team, was named the 2008 NCAA Woman of the Year at the October 19 awards banquet in Indianapolis.

Anosike’s mother, Ngozi Anosike, and Tennessee head coach Pat Summitt accepted the award on Nicky’s behalf. She plays professionally in Israel and was unable to attend the ceremony.

Anosike, a versatile post player for the Lady Vols who was part of the school’s most heralded recruiting class in 2004 that included Candace Parker and Alexis Hornbuckle, finished her UT career with more than 1,000 points and 800 rebounds. She also was one of just four Lady Vols (joining Parker, Chamique Holdsclaw and Tamika Catchings) to amass more than 600 points, 500 rebounds, 100 blocks, 100 steals and 125 assists during her four years.

Anosike said the award was the best honor she has received, simply because it represents the balance being a student-athlete requires. “The award is about being well-rounded, both academically and athletically,” she said in a videotaped message. “It’s something that is a testament to my life and to the dedication my mom showed when I was growing up.”

Ngozi Anosike raised eight children on her own, coming to the United States from Nigeria with just a sixth-grade education. The family lived on welfare and public assistance for several years, but Ngozi has gone on to earn a college degree, become a registered nurse and move the family out of the projects.

In accepting the award on her daughter’s behalf, Ngozi had a message for any young girl who doubts whether she can achieve. “If I can do it, so can you,” she said. Then, after staring at the award and recognizing her daughter’s accomplishments, she said, “Today, happiness is mine.”

Summit called Anosike “the most focused student-athlete I’ve had, and as most of you know, I’ve been at this for a while now.”

She recalled visiting the Anosike family and listening to Nicky review the schools other than Tennessee she was considering when her mother said, “No, no, no … you will play for coach Summitt.”

Summitt called Anosike’s mother “an awesome role model” and noted that all the Woman of the Year honorees are “special to society for the impact they will have on others.”

Anosike completed a triple major in political science, legal studies and sociology in four years in Knoxville while winning two national titles, one Southeastern Conference regular-season title and three SEC tournament championships during her Lady Vols career.

Beyond helping Tennessee women’s basketball put its indelible stamp on NCAA history, Anosike believes the program has made a significant contribution to advancing women’s sports.

“We are probably the most televised women’s basketball team in the nation and probably in the history of women’s sports, which is huge for growing the game and the awareness of women’s sports overall,” she said when informed of being a finalist.

Anosike isn’t done making her own mark. She has been accepted into the Teach For America program, a national corps of recent college graduates who commit two years to teaching in urban and rural public schools, as a way of furthering her passion for leadership and desire to make a difference. Though she has deferred entering the program while she continues her professional basketball career (she played for the WNBA’s Minnesota Lynx in 2008), Anosike in the meantime plans to use her stature as an athlete to advocate for children living in poverty.

As Anosike embraces her new role as the latest recipient of one of the NCAA’s most prestigious awards, she encouraged aspiring athletes, and particularly young women, to never doubt themselves.

“There are going to be people who tell you that you can’t do it, but if you work hard and set goals for yourself – and strive to achieve those goals – then just like me, you can make it to a school like the University of Tennessee,” she said.

The annual Woman of the Year award, now in its 18th year, recognizes outstanding female student-athletes who have excelled in academics, athletics, leadership and service. A committee composed of representatives from NCAA member schools and conferences selected the top 30 – 10 from each division – from 130 conference and independent nominees. From the 30 honorees, nine finalists – three from each division – were chosen. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics selected Anosike from the nine finalists.

The top 30 honorees were at the banquet, including the following eight finalists.

 

Nine finalists selected for 18th NCAA Woman of the Year

The NCAA News, October 1, 2008

The NCAA has named the nine finalists for the 18th annual NCAA Woman of the Year award.

This year’s top nine honorees are:

  • Susan Ackermann, Salisbury (lacrosse), Capital Athletic Conference
  • Nkolika Anosike, Tennessee (basketball),Southeastern Conference
  • Jennifer Artichuk, Delta State (swimming and diving), Independent
  • Shanti Freitas, Smith (swimming and diving), New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference
  • Arianna Lambie, Stanford (cross country, track and field), Pacific-10 Conference
  • Samantha Mitchell, Mount Olive (volleyball, track and field), Conference Carolinas
  • Lindsey Ozimek, Charlotte (soccer), Atlantic 10 Conference
  • Sarah Schettle, Wisconsin-Oshkosh (track and field, cross country, swimming), Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
  • Heather Walker, Georgian Court (volleyball, softball), Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference

The award recognizes accomplished NCAA female student-athletes who have excelled in athletics, academics, service and leadership. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics will name a national winner from among the top nine finalists at the annual awards dinner October 19 in Indianapolis.

Whitney Myers, a former swimming student-athlete at Arizona, was the 2007 Woman of the Year.

Following are some of the achievements of this year’s finalists:

 

Susan Ackermann, Salisbury, lacrosse

Academic achievements: Graduated in May 2008 with a 3.91 GPA; majored in exercise science with minors in marketing management and business administration. Capital Athletic Conference Women’s Scholar Athlete of the Year, 2008. Salisbury Female Scholar Athlete of the Year, 2008. Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division III Scholar Athlete of the Year, 2008. ESPN The Magazine Women’s At-large Academic all-American of the Year, 2008.

Athletics achievements: All-time leader in career goals and assists at Salisbury. IWLCA, Inside Lacrosse and womenslacrosse.com first-team all-American. Two-time conference player of the year. Winner of the Maryland Association of College Directors of Athletics postgraduate scholarship. Inside Lacrosse Athlete of the Year.

Service and leadership: Campus Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, 2005-08. Soccer and basketball manager, 2005-08. Senior Games volunteer, 2006-08. Vice president of national leadership honor society Omicron Delta Kappa, 2007-08.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Competing in athletics at the college level has prepared me with great time management, leadership and teamwork skills. I learned to stay poised under the pressure of simultaneously preparing for tests, presentations, practices and games. My leadership abilities flourished in college in being a two-time team captain as well as holding officer positions in academic groups.

 

Nkolika Anosike, Tennessee, basketball

Academic achievements: Graduated in May 2008 with a triple major in political science, legal studies and sociology. SEC Academic Honor Roll, 2005-08. ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American second-team, 2007-08. Boyd McWhorter Postgraduate Scholarship winner for Tennessee, 2008.

Athletics achievements: Two-time NCAA Women’s Final Four all-tournament team selection. Member of one SEC regular-season and three SEC tournament championship teams. Twice led the Lady Vols in blocked shots. Member of the two USA U19 Women’s Basketball World Championship teams and the 2007 USA Pan-American team. Drafted into the WNBA by the Minnesota Lynx.

Service and leadership: Team captain, 2007-08. Campus Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, 2007-08. Volunteer for the East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, elementary school career day, Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure and Lady Vol Fund Run.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Leadership through example makes a difference. I have had opportunities to learn this lesson, most recently as I helped lead the Lady Vols basketball team to its eighth national championship. I was not the superstar; I did the unglamorous work that wins games and brings success in life. Some of our most effective leaders are not in the spotlight but lead by example through hard work and dedication. This assertion reflects who I am and what I hope to become.”

 

Jennifer Artichuk, Delta State, swimming and diving

Academic achievements: Graduated in May 2008 with a 3.87 GPA; majored in accounting. Three-time College Swim Coaches Association academic all-American. Three-time New South Intercollegiate Swim Conference (NSISC) academic all-conference selection. Recipient of the Reynolds-Chiz Scholarship in Accountancy, 2007-08.

Athletics achievements: Delta State Charles S. Kerg Senior Athlete of the Year, 2008. Four-time all-NSISC pick. Holds the NSISC record in the 200-meter butterfly and the school record in the 100-meter and 200-meter butterfly. Three-time first-team all-American. Team captain, 2006-08. Two-time NSISC champion.

Service and leadership: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, 2006-08. President of the Student Accountant Board of Administrators and the Business Students Advisory Committee. Youth mentor for the Cleveland (Mississippi) Youth Mentor program, 2005-08. Covenant Presbyterian Church Nursery Worker, 2005-08. Participated in the Delta Aquatic Club Mentor program.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Being a student-athlete taught me discipline, time management and built my character. It is not easy being in the pool four hours a day, in class all day, working at night, and still finding time to get my homework done. Knowing that I had to be successful in these endeavors to reach my goals kept me going and kept me strong.”

 

Shanti Freitas, Smith, swimming and diving

Academic achievements: Sociology major with minors in education and child study who graduated in May 2008. Three-time academic all-American. NEWMAC academic all-conference selection, 2006 and 2008. Dean’s List, 2005-06. Seven Sisters Scholar-Athlete Award, 2008.

Athletics achievements: Three-time Seven Sisters diving champion. Three-time all-American diver. First-team all-NEWMAC selection. NCAA Leadership Conference participant, 2005. Rookie of the Year, Sophomore Athlete of the Year and Senior Athlete of the Year at Smith. Team captain, 2007-08.

Service and leadership: Associate director of Best Buddies program. Student mentor at an after-school program. Campus Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, 2005-06. Volunteered at La Case de la Mujer, a domestic violence project in Ecuador, while studying abroad. Served as an outreach intern for Engaging Latino Families in Education, 2007.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Having to constantly divide my time carefully between academics, athletics and extracurricular activities, I have learned that staying organized is essential to being able to manage my time well and accomplish all that I need and want to do. However, more than good habits and life skills in time management, the most important lessons I have learned from being a student-athlete come from interactions with my classmates, teammates, and coaches.”

 

Arianna Lambie, Stanford , cross country/track and field

Academic achievements: Graduated in May 2008; majored in Earth Systems. Three-time first-team academic all-American. CoSIDA University Division all-American Track and Field and Cross Country Athlete of the Year. Recipient of the Al Masters Award, presented annually to the Stanford student-athlete attaining the highest standards of athletic performance, leadership and academic achievement.

Athletics achievements: Member of four Division I cross country national championship teams. Four-time cross country and three-time track and field all-American. Member of four indoor and four outdoor Pac-10 championship teams. Pac-10 Cross Country Athlete of the Year, 2005, 2006 and 2007. Competed in the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trails. Track team captain, 2007.

Service and leadership: Pac-10 Sportsmanship Award winner, 2008. Served as president of the Science and Environmental Education program, 2006-08. Habitat for Humanity and Special Olympics volunteer. School of Earth Sciences Graduate Student Advisory Committee, 2007-08.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Nothing taught me the worth of listening to mind, body and other people’s needs as did running at Stanford. With patience has come the equally invaluable acquisition of perspective. Stanford’s encouragement to pour myself into each of my several passions at the appropriate times has been one of the greatest gifts the school provided.”

 

Samantha Mitchell, Mount Olive, volleyball/track and field

Academic achievements: Psychology major who graduated in May 2008. NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship recipient, 2008. Mount Olive Athletics Department Honor Roll 2004-08. Conference Carolinas Presidential Honor Roll, 2004-08. Conference Carolinas Academic All-Conference, 2007-08.

Athletics achievement: American Volleyball Coaches Association regional all-American, 2008. Conference Carolinas Volleyball Player of the Year, 2007. Three-time first team all-conference selection in volleyball. Established school record for career digs and ranked second in career kills. 2008. Captain of outdoor track and field in the program’s inaugural season of competition, 2008. Mount Olive’s Most Outstanding Female Student-Athlete, 2008.

Service and leadership: National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. NCAA National Leadership Conference participant. Psychology Honor Society. Intern of North Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Volunteer for Cystic Fibrosis, Breast Cancer Awareness, and youth basketball camps.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Being a student-athlete has shaped my entire being as a person. It has taught me some of the most valuable lessons about life. Athletics have equipped me with the attributes needed for success in my relationships, academics, career and even in building my character. Athletics has taught me how to transfer what I do in the classroom and on the court to my everyday life by communicating effectively and displaying my leadership abilities.”

 

Lindsey Ozimek, Charlotte, soccer

Academic achievements: Special education major who graduated in June 2008. Three-time ESPN The Magazine academic all-American. Four-time academic all-America and three-time Atlantic 10 all-academic team selection. Atlantic 10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year, 2007-08. Recipient of the Military Order of the Purple Heart Award, highest honor for academic excellence in the university’s education department.

Athletics achievement: Member of the United States Women’s U-20 and U-23 National Teams. First-team all-American. First-team Atlantic 10 all-conference. Member of 2006 conference championship team. Atlantic 10 Midfielder of the Year, 2007. First-team NSCAA/Adidas All-Southeast Region.

Service and leadership: Youth soccer coach and trainer. Soccer camp administrator. Special education teacher. Member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Designed soccer camps for children with physical and mental disabilities. Team captain, 2005-07.

Excerpt from personal statement: “The growth, personal development and experiences I have gained from being a four-year student athlete at UNCC have undoubtedly served as the vehicle that propelled me to achieving my goals on and off of the field. As team captain, I have evolved into a more confident, assertive, and resilient leader. As a student-athlete, I have been blessed to travel throughout the world to various cities and institutions. These endeavors have allowed me to experience different cultures, nationalities, meet new people, while ultimately forcing me out of my comfort zone.”

 

Sarah Schettle, Wisconsin-Oshkosh, track and field/cross country/swimming and diving

Academic achievements: Chemistry and Spanish double major who graduated in May 2008. Participant in the University Honors Program. NCAA Division III Women’s Outdoor Track and Field All-Academic Team of the Year selection. Academic all-American, 2004-07.

Athletics achievement: Member of three indoor and two outdoor NCAA track and field national championships teams. Two-time indoor track and field All-American. Member of two outdoor track and one indoor conference championship teams.

Service and leadership: NCAA Sportsmanship Award recipient, 2006. Co-founder of eMentors, an online program connecting current students with alumni. Author of undergraduate research published in a scholarly journal, 2007. Nursing home, Special Olympics and blood drive volunteer.

Excerpt from personal statement: “As each athletics season commences, I write goals on index cards and pin them to the ceiling above my bed to remind myself of them at the beginning and close of each day. My senior year I wrote “Have no regrets”—the most important thing I have learned as a student-athlete and the card that will remain on my ceiling. It encompasses why I dedicate myself to taking full advantage of each time I have the opportunity to step on a track, pool deck or enter a classroom.”

 

Heather Walker, Georgian Court, volleyball/softball

Academic achievements: History major who graduated in May 2008. Spring and fall conference all-academic team pick. National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-American Scholar Athlete, 2005-07. Dean’s Scholar, 2004-08.

Athletics achievements: First-team Louisville Slugger/NFCA all-American. CACC Softball Player of the Year, 2007. Two-time Georgian Court Athlete of the Year. Member of one softball and two volleyball conference championship teams. Captain of the softball and volleyball teams, 2005-08.

Service and leadership: National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Women in Leadership Development. Elementary school reading volunteer. President of Pi Delta Phi, the French Honor Society, 2006-08.

Excerpt from personal statement: “Through athletics competition, not only have I gained a better appreciation for the game of softball, but I have also gained a better understanding of myself. The amount of time and dedication it takes to be a student-athlete at the Division II level, as well as continually striving to improve myself, has heightened my internal drive which will serve me well as I graduate and pursue new goals. Athletics has provided me the opportunity to interact with a diverse group of people. A simple way to sum up my experience of being a student-athlete at Georgian Court University is that it has been truly transformative.”

 

Woman of the Year nominees chosen

The NCAA News, September 9, 2008

The NCAA announced 130 conference and independent nominees for the 18th annual NCAA Woman of the Year award.

The honor recognizes outstanding female student-athletes who have excelled academically and athletically in addition to demonstrating strong community service and leadership.

Nominees represent all three divisions.

The top 10 honorees in each division will be announced later this month followed by the selection of the top three honorees per division. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics will choose the winner from the top nine honorees, and the 2008 NCAA Woman of the Year will be announced at an awards dinner in Indianapolis on October 19.

To be eligible for this award, the female student-athlete must have earned a varsity letter in an NCAA-sponsored sport and competed during the 2007-08 academic year. In addition, each individual must have completed intercollegiate eligibility in her primary sport by the end of the 2008 spring season and must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.5.

This year’s conference and independent nominees are:

America East Conference
Dana Hastie
Stony Brook University (Division I) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

America East Conference
Sarah Hudak
Boston University (Division I) Field Hockey

American Southwest Conference
Michelle Heckmann
Concordia University (Texas) (Division III) Volleyball

American Southwest Conference
Tarra Richardson
McMurry University (Division III) Basketball

Atlantic 10 Conference
Sarah-Jo Lawrence
George Washington University (Division I) Basketball

Atlantic 10 Conference
Lindsey Ozimek
University of North Carolina, Charlotte (Division I) Soccer

Atlantic Coast Conference
Kandia Batchelor
Florida State University (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Atlantic Coast Conference
Jessica Botzum
Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University (Division I) Swimming and Diving

Atlantic Sun Conference
Volha Batsula
East Tennessee State University (Division I) Tennis

Big 12 Conference
Sarah Pavan
University of Nebraska, Lincoln (Division I) Volleyball

Big 12 Conference
Sally Kipyego
Texas Tech University (Division I) Outdoor Track and Field

Big East Conference
Allie Quigley
DePaul University (Division I) Basketball

Big East Conference
Jillian Drouin
Syracuse University (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Big Ten Conference
Molly Crispell
Pennsylvania State University (Division I) Swimming and Diving

Big Sky Conference
Laura Cote
University of Montana (Division I) Basketball

Big South Conference
Stephanie Reid
Winthrop University (Division I) Softball

Big South Conference
Allyson Fasnacht
Liberty University (Division I) Basketball

Big West Conference
Bethany Nickless
University of California, Santa Barbara (Division I) Cross Country and Outdoor Track and Field

California Collegiate Athletic Association
Katherine Bagwell
California State University, Chico (Division II) Soccer, and Outdoor Track and Field

Capital Athletic Conference Inc
Susan Ackermann
Salisbury University (Division III) Lacrosse

Centennial Conference
Emily Hinchcliff
Haverford College (Division III) Volleyball

Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference
Heather Walker
Georgian Court University (Division II) Softball and Volleyball

Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association
Kim Moore
Shaw University (Division II) Tennis and Volleyball

Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association
Celeste Trahan
Elizabeth City State University (Division II) Basketball

College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin
Sarah Richardson
Wheaton College (Illinois) (Division III) Soccer

College Hockey America
Ashley King
Wayne State University (Michigan) (Division II) Ice Hockey

Colonial Athletic Association
Megan Moulton-Levy
College of William and Mary (Division I) Tennis

Colonial Athletic Association
Colleen Walsh
University of Delaware (Division I) Volleyball

Commonwealth Conference
Erin Fisher
Elizabethtown College (Division III) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

The Commonwealth Coast Conference
Kacie Gallo
Salve Regina University (Division III) Soccer, and Outdoor Track and Field

Conference Carolinas
Samantha Mitchell
Mount Olive College (Division II) Volleyball and Track and Field

Conference USA
Marissa Daniels
Rice University (Division I) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Conference USA
Jami Tullius
University of Texas at El Paso (Division I) Soccer

Division III Independents
Holly Andrews
Nebraska Wesleyan University (Division III) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

East Coast Conference
Diana Redman
Queens College (New York) (Division II) Soccer, and Indoor Track and Field

Empire 8
Natalia Chabebe
Stevens Institute of Technology (Division III) Fencing

Empire 8
Emily Lesher
Nazareth College (Division III) Swimming and Diving

Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Rachel Folcik
Ferris State University (Division II) Basketball

Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Kirby Blackley
University of Findlay (Division II) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Great Lakes Valley Conference
Elizabeth Holmes
Northern Kentucky University (Division II) Volleyball

Great Northeast Athletic Conference
Jillian Leger
Saint Joseph's College (Maine) (Division III) Soccer

Great Northwest Athletic Conference
Courtney Schneider
Western Washington University (Division II) Volleyball

Great Northwest Athletic Conference
Jackie Thomas
Seattle University (Division II) Basketball

Gulf South Conference
Ashton Washington
University of West Alabama (Division II) Basketball

Heartland Conference
Kristen Gascoyne
St. Edward's University (Division II) Soccer

Horizon League
Jessica Weidert
Wright State University (Division I) Swimming and Diving

Independent
Jennifer Artichuk
Delta State University (Division II) Swimming

Independent
Dena Baskous
New Jersey Institute of Technology (Division II) Soccer

Independent
Courtney Arno-Templet
Texas Woman's University (Division II) Gymnastics

Independent
Sheralyn Briggs
University at Buffalo, the State University of New (Division I) Rowing

Independent
Aiesha Brown
North Carolina Central University (Division II) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Independent
Elizabeth Enyart
U.S. Air Force Academy (Division I) Fencing

Independent
Faith Greenawalt
Tiffin University (Division II) Tennis

Independent
Jennifer Hukill
North Carolina Central University (Division II) Basketball

Independent
Meghann Morrill
University of Nevada, Reno (Division I) Rifle

Independent
Ashley Postell
University of Utah (Division I) Gymnastics

Iowa Intercol. Athletic Conf.
Ashley Rogers
Wartburg College (Division III) Softball and Volleyball

Ivy Group
Jesse Carlin
University of Pennsylvania (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Ivy Group
Sarah Wu
Brown University (Division I) Rowing

Landmark Conference
Emily Blatter
Goucher College (Division III) Lacrosse

Liberty League
Nicole Tetreault
Hamilton College (Division III) Lacrosse and Soccer

Little East Conference
Christie Lotti
Rhode Island College (Division III) Softball

Lone Star Conference
Rachel Ingram
Southwestern Oklahoma State University (Division II) Cross Country

Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference
Colleen Feeney
Bridgewater State College (Division III) Basketball

Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference
Brittany Bisnott
Niagara University (Division I) Soccer

Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference
Jaclyn O'Leary
Iona College (Division I) Lacrosse

Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association
Sarah Wittingen
Calvin College (Division III) Outdoor Track and Field

Mid-American Conference
Stephanie Swiger
Bowling Green State University (Division I) Volleyball

Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association
Jill Johnson
Missouri Western State University (Division II) Basketball

Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference
Morgan Maxwell
Howard University (Division I) Women’s Volleyball

Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference
Jessica Worsley
University of Maryland, Eastern Shore (Division I) Bowling

Midwest Conference
Ashley Yeast
Monmouth College (Illinois) (Division III) Basketball and Volleyball

Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Maria Bye
University of St. Thomas (Minnesota) (Division III) Softball

Missouri Valley Conference
Sara Lungren
Wichita State University (Division I) Volleyball

Mountain West Conference
Chelsea Goodman
Brigham Young University (Division I) Volleyball

Mountain West Conference
Dionne Marsh
University of New Mexico (Division I) Basketball

New England Small College Athletic Conference
Grace Moore
Bowdoin College (Division III) Lacrosse and Soccer

New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference
Doria Holbrook
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Division III) Swimming and Diving

New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference
Shanti Freitas
Smith College (Division III) Swimming

New Jersey Athletic Conference

Lizzelle Cintron
New Jersey City University (Division III) Volleyball

New Jersey Athletic Conference

Jackie Ferranti
Montclair State University (Division III) Softball

North Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Jill Smolczyk
University of South Dakota (Division II) Swimming and Diving

North Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Ashley Homan
St. Cloud State University (Division II) Softball

North Atlantic Conference
Rebecca Allen
Maine Maritime Academy (Division III) Volleyball

North Coast Athletic Conference
Erin Gorsich
Denison University (Division III) Tennis

Northeast-10 Conference
Alison Lesher
Le Moyne College (Division II) Swimming and Diving

Northeast Conference
Ann Marie Mangano
Quinnipiac University (Division I) Field Hockey

Northern Athletics Conference
Catherine Chappell
Milwaukee School of Engineering (Division III) Basketball, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference
Kallie Tellefson
Winona State University (Division II) Soccer

Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference
Kira Wannebo
Northern State University (Division II) Soccer

Northwest Conference
Sarah Zerzan
Willamette University (Division III) Cross Country, and Outdoor Track and Field

Ohio Valley Conference
Beth Boden
Tennessee Technological University (Division I) Softball

Old Dominion Athletic Conference
Amy Roberson
Washington and Lee University (Division III) Swimming and Diving

Old Dominion Athletic Conference
Kelly Gonzalez
Guilford College (Division III) Lacrosse

Patriot League
Denise Infante
American University (Division I) Field Hockey

Pacific-10 Conference
Arianna Lambie
Stanford University (Division I) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Pacific West Conference
Sheila Johnson
Grand Canyon University (Division II) Tennis

Patriot League
Christine Smith
Lehigh University (Division I) Field Hockey and Lacrosse

Peach Belt Conference
Amanda Gerolstein
University of South Carolina Aiken (Division II) Volleyball

Peach Belt Conference
Tiara Good
Lander University (Division II) Basketball

The Pennsylvania Athletic Conference
Ericka Morrison
Misericordia University (Division III) Basketball

Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference
Brittany Pikur
Indiana University of Pennsylvania (Division II) Lacrosse and Soccer

Presidents' Athletic Conference
Halley Brus
Chatham University (Division III) Softball, Soccer, and Swimming and Diving

Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference
Nicole Schwab
Fort Lewis College (Division II) Volleyball

Skyline Conference
Jennifer Martinez
St. Joseph's College (Long Island) (Division III) Softball

South Atlantic Conference
Heloisa de Oliveira
Lincoln Memorial University (Division II) Soccer

South Atlantic Conference
Melissa DeLuca
Wingate University (Division II) Volleyball

Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conf.
Natalie Calderon
University of Redlands (Division III) Outdoor Track and Field

Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference
Katherine Doogan
DePauw University (Division III) Swimming and Diving

Southern Conference
Brenna Burns
Davidson College (Division I) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Southern Conference
Alex Anderson
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (Division I) Basketball

Southeastern Conference
Nkolika Anosike
University of Tennessee, Knoxville (Division I) Basketball

Southeastern Conference
Stacy Lewis
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville (Division I) Golf

Southwestern Athletic Conference
Janna Moore-Calliste
Texas Southern University (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Southwestern Athletic Conference
Nyasha Chambwe
Jackson State University (Division I) Basketball

St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Emily Forbes
Eureka College (Division III) Softball and Volleyball

State University of New York Athletic Conference
Michelle Coombs
State University College at New Paltz (Division III) Swimming and Diving

The Summit League
Lisa Bue
North Dakota State University (Division II) Basketball

The Summit League
Halee Clark
Oral Roberts University (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Sun Belt Conference
Rachael Runnels
University of North Texas (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Sun Belt Conference
Jenna Billingsley
University of Denver (Division I) Soccer

Sunshine State Conference
Virginia Davenport
Saint Leo University (Division II) Soccer

Sunshine State Conference
Alexandra Schunk
Lynn University (Division II) Tennis

University Athletic Association
Esther Erb
Case Western Reserve University (Division III) Cross Country, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

USA South Athletic Conference
Ashley Hay
Christopher Newport University (Division III) Field Hockey

USA South Athletic Conference
Jenee Johnson
Greensboro College (Division III) Softball

Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Sarah Schettle
University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh (Division III) Cross Country, Swimming and Diving, and Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

Western Athletic Conference
Melinda Owen
University of Idaho (Division I) Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field

West Coast Conference
Jenna Shay
Pepperdine University (Division I) Soccer

West Coast Conference
Stephanie Cox (Lopez)
University of Portland (Division I) Soccer

Western Collegiate Hockey Association
Bobbi Ross
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (Division I) Ice Hockey

West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Amanda Lyons
Wheeling Jesuit University (Division II) Soccer

2005 NCAA Woman of the Year

 

McCalley Named 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year

For Immediate Release: Saturday, October 29, 2005
Contact: Crissy M. Schluep, Assistant Director of Public and Media Relations
Lauryn McCalley, photo by Stephen Nowland, NCAAPhotos

Lauryn McCalley, NCAA 2005 Woman of the Year

INDIANAPOLIS---Lauryn McCalley, a former diving standout at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is the 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year.

McCalley received the award – one of the most prestigious that the NCAA bestows – at the 15th annual NCAA Woman of the Year Awards Dinner tonight, October 29, at the Westin Indianapolis. The award honors academic and athletics excellence, as well as community service and leadership.

A selection committee comprised of representatives from NCAA member schools chose 51 state winners representing the states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico from 352 nominees. The state of Arizona did not submit any nominees. Ten finalists were selected from the state winners. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics selected McCalley from the 10 finalists.

McCalley, a Moultrie, Georgia native, is the second Woman of the Year from Tennessee and the sixth swimming and diving student-athlete to be named Woman of the Year. The 1992 Woman of the Year, Catherine Byrne, was also a member of the swimming and diving team at Tennessee.

Claiming a 3.93 grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) in microbiology, McCalley expects to graduate in May 2006 and plans to attend the University of Georgia to become a compounding pharmacist. McCalley was a recipient of the NCAA postgraduate scholarship and one of three finalists for the NCAA Walter Byers Scholarship. She was also consistently named to the Tennessee Thornton Center Honor Roll, the Southeastern Conference (SEC) Honor Roll, won the SEC Scholar Athlete Award, and as a senior, was named a SEC H. Boyd McWhorter Postgraduate Scholarship Recipient. McCalley was also named one of Glamour magazine’s 2004 Top Ten College Women.

McCalley also excelled in the pool and was a member of the United States National Team from 1995-2004. She earned all-America honors and first-team all-SEC honors throughout her collegiate career and was named the SEC Freshman Diver of the Year. McCalley is no stranger to success, being named the Tennessee Swimmer/Diver of the Year in 2002-03 and recipient of the Tennessee No Guts No Glory Award in 2003-04, all while serving as team co-captain.

While not studying or competing, McCalley found time to serve in a leadership role as the Tennessee Student-Athlete Advisory Committee President, representing female student-athletes on the Tennessee Athletics Board and serving on the Athletes in Action Leadership Team. She served as president of Homeless Holiday Dinners and Baskets, worked with the mentoring program at Colquitt Regional Hospital and was a member of the Read Aloud program for children. A member of the Chi Omega Sorority, McCalley was active with the Faith Promise Church Involvement and Service and served as a mentor for the Florence-Crypton Pregnancy Agency.

"My goals have not changed since I was young, but they have deepened," cCalley said in her personal statement on her nomination form. "Because of being a student-athlete, these dreams have now transformed into reality. The benefits of being a student-athlete have been manifold. First, the discipline that diving has taught me is invaluable and has helped me achieve my goals. Secondly, I have learned to focus under pressure, a much needed skill in life. Lastly, I have learned the hard way Winston Churchill’s famous quote, ‘Never, never, never, never, never, never give up.’ These three life lessons learned from being a student-athlete will travel with me and help me reach my goals as I go to the University of Georgia to be a compounding pharmacist."

Last year’s Woman of the Year was Kelly Albin, a lacrosse standout from Division II University of California, Davis. Albin graduated magna cum laude with a degree in food science with a microbiology emphsis. She was the third winner from UC Davis since the award’s inception in 1991. The University of Georgia has also produced three national award winners.

 

Woman of the Year finalists show diversity of character, skill

The NCAA News Online, September 12th, 2005

Ten finalists have been selected for the 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year Award. The honor recognizes senior student-athletes for their outstanding athletics, academic and community-service achievements.

The 10 finalists are Michelle Reeser, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa (gymnastics); Alisha Williams, Western State College of Colorado (cross country, track and field); Leah Geib, University of Delaware (field hockey); Melissa Lehman, Barry University (volleyball); Jennifer Skolaski, University of Iowa (swimming and diving); Richelle Simpson, University of Nebraska, Lincoln (gymnastics); Deirdre Dlugonski, Pennsylvania State University (swimming and diving); Janiva Willis, Winthrop University (softball); Lauryn McCalley, University of Tennessee, Knoxville (swimming and diving); and Lindsay Hagerman, Washington and Lee University (tennis).

The 10 finalists were chosen from 51student-athletes recognized as state winners in August. Recipients also represented Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. There were no nominations from the state of Arizona.

The finalists will attend the annual Woman of the Year awards dinner October 29 in Indianapolis, at which time the 2005 Woman of the Year will be announced.

Following are some of the accomplishments of the 10 finalists.

Richelle Simpson
University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Gymnastics

Academic achievements: International studies and French double major; graduated with distinction from Nebraska in May 2005. National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches scholastic academic all-American, 2002-05. Two-time first-team academic all-Big 12 Conference selection. University of Nebraska Female Student-Athlete of the Year, 2005. Recipient of Big 12 and NCAA postgraduate scholarships, 2005.

Athletics accomplishments: Team captain, 2004-05. Top-three finisher at NCAA championships in all-around and floor exercises (2002, 2003, 2005). Earned multiple all-America honors in all-around and floor exercises. Member of Big 12 team champion, (2003, 2005). Big 12 all-around champion, 2003. Member of the Canadian National Team, 2003.

Service and leadership: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee member. Team Spirit Hospital volunteer. Coordinated fund-raising for domestic violence. Volunteer speaker at area middle and elementary schools.

Excerpt from personal statement: "My student-athlete experience has shaped who I am and will define my future success. Sports have taught me a work ethic second to none and also how to be humble with success. Athletics has helped me mature as a confident, poised and determined young woman."

 

Deirdre Dlugonski
Pennsylvania State University
Swimming and diving

Academic achievements: Kinesiology major; graduated in May 2005 with the highest grade-point average in the department. Selected to ESPN the Magazine's academic all-District II Women's At-Large first team, 2005. Four-time College Swim Coaches Association of America academic all-American. Three-time academic all-Big Ten Conference. Member of dean's list every semester.

Athletics accomplishments: Team captain, 2002-2005. Earned multiple all-America honors for relay performances. Member of several Big Ten championship relay teams. Member of Big Ten champions (2002, 2005).

Service and leadership: Member of Women's Leadership Initiative, 2003-05. Involved with the Penn Pal program, writing letters to classrooms of elementary school students. Volunteered at Special Olympics. Taught stroke techniques to children at Penn State swimming sports camps.

Excerpt from personal statement: "As a student-athlete, I have learned that some of the best experiences in life also are the most challenging. I learned that working hard to achieve goals means making sacrifices. During my career at Penn State, I gained many things, the most important of which is the opportunity to know what it feels like to be part of something bigger than myself."

 

Janiva Willis
Winthrop University
Softball

Academic achievements: Physical education athletic training major; graduated in May 2005. Four-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association all-American scholar-athlete. Four-time Big South Conference presidential scholar. Big South Scholar Athlete of the Year, 2005. Big South all-academic team, 2005. Member of the president's list and dean's list.

Athletics accomplishments: Team captain, 2004-05. Three-time all-Big South selection. Member of Canadian National Summer Team, 2002. Alternate on Canadian Olympic Team, 2004.

Service and leadership: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee member. Volunteer reader with elementary school children. Helped fund-raise for literacy programs. Worked with cerebral palsy students. Volunteered for Big Brother/Big Sister program.

Excerpt from personal statement: "By being a student-athlete, I found that I gained better time management skills and self-discipline. Being far away from home, the team became my family away from home. The lifelong relationships that I have developed with my coaches and teammates have filled the void of my family not being able to be there."

 

Lauryn McCalley
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Swimming and diving

Academic achievements: Microbiology major; expects to graduate in May 2006 and plans to become a compounding pharmacist. Recipient of NCAA postgraduate scholarship, 2004-05. NCAA Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship finalist, 2004-05. Southeastern Conference H. Boyd McWhorter Postgraduate Scholarship recipient, 2004-05. SEC scholar-athlete award, 2001-05. SEC honor roll, 2002-05. Glamour's Top Ten College Women, 2004.

Athletics accomplishments: Team co-captain, 2001-05. Earned all-America honors, 2001-04. Earned first-team all-SEC honors, 2001-04. Named SEC Freshman Diver of the Year, 2001-02. University of Tennessee Swimmer/Diver of the Year, 2002-03. Tennessee No Guts No Glory Award, 2003-04. Member of the United States National Team, 1995-2004.

Service and leadership: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee president, 2004-05. Served on University of Tennessee Athletics Board, 2004-05. Worked with Mentoring Program at Colquitt Regional Hospital. President of Homeless Holiday Dinners and Baskets. Member of Read Aloud Program for children. Faith Promise Church Involvement and Service Chairman, 2001-05.

Excerpt from personal statement: "My goals have not changed since I was young, but they have deepened. Because of being a student-athlete, these dreams have now transformed into reality. These life lessons learned from being a student-athlete will travel with me and help me reach my goals as I go to the University of Georgia to be a compounding pharmacist."

 

Lindsay Hagerman
Washington and Lee University
Tennis

Academic achievements: American history major; graduated in June 2005. NCAA postgraduate scholarship recipient, 2004-05. Received 2005 Marjorie Berkley Award, given to the outstanding female student-athlete in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. Virginia Sports Information Directors academic all-state team, 2004. Two-time ODAC Women's Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

Athletics accomplishments: Team co-captain, 2004-05. NCAA Division III singles champion, 2005. Earned NCAA all-American honors in singles (2002-04) and doubles (2003-04). Intercollegiate Tennis Association Senior of the Year, 2005. ODAC Player of the Year, 2004-05). Voted team MVP, 2002, 2004, 2005. ITA National Co-Rookie of the Year, 2002. Washington and Lee Freshman Female Athlete of the Year, co-recipient, 2002.

Service and leadership: Student-Athlete Advisory Committee member. Represented Washington and Lee at NCAA Division III Regional Leadership Conference, 2004. Served as a teacher's assistant and tutor. Helped raise funds for cystic fibrosis. Tutored at elementary, middle and high schools.

Excerpt from personal statement: "Athletics has taught me how to excel under pressure. Playing for a team in an otherwise individual sport enhanced my mental toughness, and this matured sense of confidence and determination has benefited me in other aspects of my life, academically and personally. Athletics taught me how to take risks and turn failures into success."

 

Michelle Reeser
University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
Gymnastics

Academic achievements: Accounting major; graduated in May 2005. Southeastern Conference Gymnastics Scholar-Athlete of the Year, 2005. Four-time academic all-SEC. Member of National Society of Collegiate Scholars. Three-time Scholastic all-American. College of Commerce and Business Administration scholar-athlete award, 2004. Intern with Deutsche Bank in London; Jamison, Money, Farmer & Co., PC; and Ernst & Young.

Athletics accomplishments: Member of 2002 NCAA national championship team. Member of the 2003 SEC championship team. Four-time letter-winner in the all-around. Second-/third-team all-American.

Service and leadership: Visited patients on Valentine's Day at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Four-year participant in and 2004 organizer of bake sale for Project Angel Tree. Talked with elementary-school children about goal-setting. Served as receptionist and greeter and assisted with craft activities at the Children's Hands On Museum.

Excerpt from personal statement: "I have learned so much from my time at the University of Alabama, both in and out of the classroom, lessons I know will propel me to success in my postcollegiate life. I have learned the necessity of discipline, the bedrock that has supported my success in both the classroom and gym. And I've come to know that only through perseverance can you reach your full potential."

 

Alisha Williams
Western State College of Colorado
Cross country/track and field

Academic achievements: A May 2005 summa cum laude graduate; majored in accounting and business administration. Four-time academic all-American. Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year, 2004 and 2005.

Athletics accomplishments: Member of the 2001 and 2002 national championship cross country teams. Registered top-three finishes at the NCAA indoor track and field championships in the mile (2002, 2003, 2004) and 5000 meters (2003). Finished in the top three in the 1500- and 3000-meter races at the NCAA outdoor championships, 2002, 2004-05 and 2001-02, 2005, respectively. First-team all-RMAC selection in indoor track.

Service and leadership: Helped low-income citizens and the elderly prepare tax returns. Served as peer tutor for students in accounting and math. Tutored third-graders in reading as part of America Reads program. Elected to serve as a voting member of the Student Government Association (SGA), 2001-02. Served as vice-president of internal affairs for the SGA, 2003-04.

Excerpt from personal statement: "Deciding to compete as a collegiate athlete was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Setting high goals and being given the opportunity to achieve them has been one of the greatest benefits of being a student-athlete. My coaches, teammates and professors have always encouraged me to set high goals from myself; for that I am grateful."

 

Leah Geib
University of Delaware
Field hockey

Academic achievements: A May 2005 graduate; majored in communications with a concentration in mass communication and a minor in leadership. NCAA postgraduate scholarship recipient, 2005. Two-time Colonial Athletic Association Scholar-Athlete of the Year in field hockey.

Athletics accomplishments: Team captain, 2004. Member of the 2004 conference championship team. Four-year letter-winner. Second-/third-team all-American, 2004.

Service and leadership: Golden Key International Honor Society alumni representative/director (2005) and vice-president (2003-05). Female student representative on university's athletics governing board. Volunteered as peer mentor for Delaware student-athletes with Blue H.E.N.S. Mentor. Served as Student-Athlete Advisory Council Sportsmanship Committee chair. Worked as a counselor for Holy Angels After School Care Program. Served as coach and counselor with U.S. Field Hockey Association Futures Program.

Excerpt from personal statement: "During my four years of undergraduate studies, I have devoted my time to juggling various jobs and extracurricular activities such as intercollegiate athletics, community service and campus-based organizations. It's been a rewarding challenge to be involved in so many endeavors and still remain in the top 2 percent of my class. My success in the classroom is due to the strong foundation that athletics laid for me. Being a student-athlete refind my leadership skills, strengthened my habits of disciplined work and broadened my personal character."

 

Melissa Lehman
Barry University
Volleyball

Academic achievements: A communications studies major and public relations and sport management minor; graduated in May. Nominated for Communication Studies student of the year, 2005.

Athletics accomplishments: Team captain, 2003-04. Member of NCAA Division II national championship teams in 2001 and 2004. All-Sunshine State Conference second-/third-team selection at setter and defensive specialist, 2001.

Service and leadership: President of the National Communication Association Honor Society. Served as a mentor to area youth in volleyball fundamentals and the college student-athlete experience. One of seven Barry students selected to present aspects of college life to high-school guidance counselors as part of the Sunshine State Tour Student Panel. Served as secretary-treasurer (2004-05), team representative (2001-04), and chair of the public relations committee (2003-04) for campus SAAC.

Excerpt from personal statement: "My athletics career has taught me to maintain poise in pressure situations, to work with diverse personalities and cultures while working toward a goal, and to prepare to be the best. I also learned the value of laughter. Though competition is never easy, laughter became my antidote. It brought joy to my daily life, reduced team stress and brought a balance to my life that helped me make the most of every day."

 

Jennifer Skolaski
University of Iowa
Swimming and diving

Academic achievements: A May 2005 graduate; majored in social work. NCAA postgraduate scholarship recipient, 2005. Named Big Ten Conference scholar-athlete, 2003-04. Two-time academic all-Big Ten, 2002-03, 2003-04.

Athletics accomplishments: Team co-captain, 2003-04, 2004-05. Two-time all-American. Became the first female swimmer at Iowa to qualify for NCAA national meet all four years. Three-time second-/third-team all-Big Ten selection in the 200-yard breaststroke. Competed at the 2000 and 2004 U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials.

Service and leadership: Chair of the campus SAAC, 2004-05. Served as a volunteer with Hawkeye Pride, a program that tutors fourth- and fifth-graders and encourages leadership skills. Honored by the University of Iowa Health Center for volunteering more than 100 hours. Ronald McDonald House volunteer.

Excerpt from personal statement: "My goal had always been to be a top athlete, and I was closest to achieving this my sophomore year when I finaled at nationals. I dreamed of repeating this, but I was faced with coaching turnovers and personal injuries. By my senior year, I felt I had overcome these obstacles and was physically and mentally ready to accomplish this ultimate goal. I had the opportunity to work with distinguished coaches, teammates and other athletes who pushed and motivated me to always work harder and strive for more. Most importantly, this experience showed me that I could be a leader and a role model in my everyday actions."

 

State stars shine in 2005 WOTY kickoff

The NCAA News Online, August 29th, 2005

The campaign to crown the 15th annual NCAA Woman of the Year has begun with the selection of 51 state winners, including representatives from Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. There were no nominations from the state of Arizona.

The NCAA Woman of the Year recognizes outstanding female student-athletes who have excelled in academics, athletics and community leadership.

Chosen by a committee of representatives from member institutions, 29 of the 2005 state honorees are from Division I, while 16 represent Division II and six are from Division III. They represent 15 sports.

The committee of institutional representatives also will select 10 finalists from the 51 state winners, based on grade-point average, athletics achievement and community service. The NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics will chose the national winner from among the 10 finalists. Finalists will be revealed in the September 26 issue of The NCAA News.

The 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year will be announced during the annual awards dinner October 29 in Indianapolis. ESPN personality Danielle Sargent and Kara Lawson, former University of Tennessee, Knoxville, women's basketball standout and a 2003 Woman of the Year top-10 finalist currently playing in the WNBA, will serve as emcees for the evening.

As part of the Woman of the Year weekend of activities, honorees will be working with youth and the Association's character-building program Stay in Bounds at the NCAA Hall of Champions.

This year's state winners were chosen from a pool of 352 nominations, 76 more than in 2004 and the most since 2000, when there also were 352 candidates for the honor. The pool showed an increase in diversity as well, specifically in African-American, international, Asian/Pacific Islander and Latina/Hispanic student-athletes.

Division I submitted 188 applications. Fifty-six nominations came from Division II and 111 were received from Division III. The numbers represent increases in submissions for all three divisions over last year, with Division I submitting 50 more applications and Divisions II and III registering more modest gains at 14 and 15, respectively.

Kelly Albin, a lacrosse student-athlete from the University of California, Davis, was recognized as the 2004 NCAA Woman of the Year. Albin is the third winner from UC Davis since the award's inception in 1991. The University of Georgia also has produced three national award winners.

State Name School Sport
Alaska Mindy Lindquist University of Alaska Anchorage Basketball, track and field, volleyball
Alabama Michelle Reeser University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa Gymnastics
Arkansas Jayme Butts University of Arkansas, Little Rock Soccer, swimming
California Ogonna Nnamani Stanford University Volleyball
Colorado Alisha Williams Western State College of Colorado Cross country, track and field
Connecticut Kristen Graczyk University of Connecticut Soccer
Washington, D.C. Colleen Kelly Georgetown University Cross country, track and field
Delaware Leah Geib University of Delaware Field hockey
Florida Melissa Lehman Barry University Volleyball
Georgia Samantha Arsenault University of Georgia Swimming
Hawaii Tracie Uchima University of Hawaii, Manoa Softball
Iowa Jennifer Skolaski University of Iowa Swimming
Idaho Tania Vander Meulen University of Idaho Cross country, track and field
Illinois Courtney Koester Northwestern University Basketball, lacrosse
Indiana Kate Endress Ball State University Basketball
Kansas Kendra Wecker Kansas State University Basketball
Kentucky Stephanie Leimbach Northern Kentucky University Softball
Louisiana Janice Ezegbunam Southeastern Louisiana University Track and field
Massachusetts Jennifer Walker Bentley College Field hockey
Maryland Stephanie LaGue Goucher College Swimming
Maine Kelly Cyr Saint Joseph's College (Maine) Soccer
Michigan Lindsey Gallo University of Michigan Cross country, track and field
Minnesota Heather Hamilton University of Minnesota Duluth Track and field
Missouri Sara Murray Truman State University Soccer
Mississippi Bernadette Sayles Delta State University Basketball
Montana Margot Merrill-Johnson Montana State University-Billings Soccer, tennis
North Carolina Shannon Davis Winston-Salem State University Bowling, softball
North Dakota Kinsey Coles North Dakota State University Cross country, track and field
Nebraska Richelle Simpson University of Nebraska, Lincoln Gymnastics
New Hampshire Erin Osborn Dartmouth College Lacrosse, soccer
New Jersey Mary Mewherter Georgian Court University Basketball, soccer
New Mexico Christina Spence University of New Mexico Golf
Nevada Alyssa Chin University of Nevada Swimming
New York Kate Chambers Hartwick College Water polo
Ohio Jill Boo Denison University Swimming
Oklahoma Valentina Medina Oklahoma State University Cross country, track and field
Oregon Julie Elliott University of Portland Track and field
Pennsylvania Deirdre Dlugonski Pennsylvania State University Swimming
Puerto Rico Yarisel Rodríguez University of Puerto Rico, Cayey Track and field, volleyball
Rhode Island Carly Muise Bryant University Softball
South Carolina Janiva Willis Winthrop University Softball
South Dakota Marci Miller University of South Dakota Track and field
Tennessee Lauryn McCalley University of Tennessee, Knoxville Swimming
Texas Jamie Carey University of Texas at Austin Basketball
Utah Lindsey Metcalf Brigham Young University Track and field, volleyball
Virginia Lindsay Hagerman Washington and Lee University Tennis
Vermont Brittany Cronin Middlebury College Soccer
Washington Corrie McDaniel Seattle Pacific University Gymnastics
Wisconsin Tara Schmitt University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point Basketball, soccer, track and field
West Virginia Lauren Deschamps Wheeling Jesuit University Soccer
Wyoming Shauna Smith University of Wyoming Track and field

 

1992 NCAA Woman of the Year

 

Byrne humbly grabs award winner's spotlight

As published in The NCAA News, November 23, 1992

By David D. Smale SPECIAL TO THE NCAA NEWS

Catherine Byrne

Anne Byrne said her daughter would not be able to sleep. Catherine Byrne confirmed her mother's suspicion.

Catherine was finishing a whirlwind week in which she received the 1992 NCAA Woman of the Year Award in Chicago and then was whisked to New York City for promotional stops. After she re-turned to her hometown of Solon, Ohio, she was still going strong, even as midnight approached.

"It feels wonderful,” she said. "I couldn't be more surprised and honored.”

Perhaps she shouldn't have been surprised. Byrne earned the award with a 3.880 grade-point average (4.000 scale) in kinesiology, twice winning academic all-American honors. She earned all-America status 11 times in the swimming pool for the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. And her community involvement accomplishments read more like the list of three people who don't have a full-time hobby like intercollegiate swimming.

She received the Torchbearer Award at Tennessee, the highest undergraduate honor bestowed by the university, given for leadership and community service. She worked with children at the Tennessee School for the Deaf, spent time with Down's syndrome kids and read to local schoolchildren.

Byrne was selected for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award from among 10 national finalists. Those 10 were selected from a group of 52 nominees one from each state, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. Byrne thought her community service may have been the deciding factor.
"The average CPA for the 10 finalists was 3.860, so mine was not out of the ordinary;' she said. "Sports arc hard to compare. Some of the finalists were from individual sports like swimming, and some were from team sports. I don't think you can get as much recognition in a team sport because it is more subjective.”

Byrne said she felt the most honored when she heard NCAA President Judith M. Sweet describing her as "exemplifying the best of women's collegiate athletics in the 1990s."

"I met Judy, and she is so wonderful,”' Byrne said. "She said she was proud to be at the awards ceremony. She said she was humbled to be with all the finalists. We kept saying, ‘What do you mean, you're proud, after all you've done in college athletics?' I admire what she has done, and I appreciate her saying those things.”

Byrne says she will use the honor as an opportunity to speak about women's athletics. In fact, she doesn't feel she has a choice. "There is a responsibility that goes with this award, speaking out about women's athletics and being a role model to younger athletes,” she said.

"I think it is great that the NCAA is allowing women's athletics to be recognized.  So often men are the ones getting all the recognition. Someone recently compared this award to the Heisman Trophy. But the Heisman is just for athletics and just for one sport."

Byrne will be involved in a new community in January when she begins pursuing her master's degree in physical therapy at Emory University.

Her goal is to start working at a rehabilitation hospital "to get my feet wet." She hopes someday to open a practice in orthopedic physical therapy.

But for now, she will have to tend to being NCAA Woman of the Year and fitting one more duty into her already busy day.

 

Finalists:

Lisa Kay Arel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Julia M. Burdick, Washington University (Missouti)
Catherine Byrne, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Jennifer Cobb, Cornell University
Lori A. Detweiler, University of Arizona
Janet Louise Kruse, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Barb Pranger, University of Kansas
Nicole Scherr, South Dakota State University
Catherine Sharkey, Yale University
Penny Tollefson, Hamline University

 

Regional Winners:

Alabama: Katherine Kelleher, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
Alaska: Amanda Deuling, University of Alaska Fairbanks
Arkansas: Amber Nicholas, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Arizona: Lori A. Detweiler, University of Arizona
California: Tammy Story, University of Southern California
Colorado: Stephanie Frazier, University of Denver
Connecticut: Catherine Sharkey, Yale University
Delaware: Tara Elise Finnegan, University of Delaware
District of Columbia: Kristin McArdle, George Washington University
Florida: Holly Lloyd, University of Florida
Georgia: Debbie Frisk, Emory University
Hawaii: Heidi McElhaney, University of Hawaii
Idaho: Anna Staker, Boise State University
Iowa: Jennifer Brower, University of Iowa
Illinois: Andrea Lee Shane, Western Illinois University
Indiana: MaChelle Joseph, Purdue University
Kansas: Barb Pranger, University of Kansas
Kentucky: Kimberly Ina Monaghan, Centre College
Louisiana: Vicki Maria Chesnum, Nicholls State University
Massachusetts: Lisa Kay Arel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Maryland: Donna Lee Zubalik, University of Maryland, College Park
Maine: Jill E. Abrams, University of Maine
Michigan: May Tan, Northern Michigan University
Minnesota: Penny Tollefson, Hamline University
Missouri: Julia M. Burdick, Washington University (Missouri)
Mississippi: Gail Crick Eaves, University of Mississippi.
Montana: Shannon Michelle Cate, University of Montana
North Carolina: Elizabeth Ann Hancock, Wingate College
North Dakota: Lisa Ristau, North Dakota State University
Nebraska: Janet Louise Kruse, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Nevada: Tracey King, University of Nevada
New Hampshire: Debra Biche, Plymouth State College
New Jersey: Catherine A. Thurlow, Princeton University
New Mexico: Pauline Manser, University of New Mexico
New York: Jennifer Cobb, Cornell University
Ohio: Shantel I. Ransom, University of Toledo
Oklahoma: Tina Jean Gamboa, University of Oklahoma
Oregon: Martha Sheldon, University of Portland
Pennsylvania: Susan Robinson, Pennsylvania State University.
Puerto Rico: Melba Sanchez Torres, American University of Puerto Rico
Rhode Island: Geraldine Hendricken, Providence College
South Carolina: Liz Dolan, Clemson University
South Dakota: Nicole Scherr, South Dakota State University
Tennessee: Catherine Byrne, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Texas: Katy Arris, University of Texas at Austin
Utah: Melissa Marlowe Anglesey, University of Utah
Virginia: Run Neiss, Old Dominion University
Vermont: Erica Nourjian, Middlebury College
Washrngton: Kari McKay, Eastern Washington University
Wisconsin: Heather Taggart, University of Wisconsin, Madison
West Virginia: Koscrnary Kosiorck, West Virginia University
Wyoming: Kimberly Anne Smith, University of Wyoming.

NCAA names two Jim McKay Scholarship winners

The NCAA has selected Cierra Burdick, a communication studies major from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, who competed in basketball, and Cristian Gonzalez Mendez, a public relations major from Florida State University who competed in tennis, as recipients of the 2015 Jim McKay Scholarship.

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