CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The University of New Hampshire took second place in the 2013-14 America East Academic Cup standings announced Wednesday, posting a grade point average of 3.20. It is the highest UNH GPA in the 19-year history of the award.
The second-place finish is the fourth over the last five years for UNH as it came in second in 2012-13 (3.18 GPA), 2010-11 (3.13) and 2009-10 (3.16). The Wildcats were also the first school to win back-to-back titles in the award’s history (1998-99, 1999-00). The women's lacrosse team had the highest GPA of any other America East teams, tallying a mark of 3.23.
Lauren McCandless (’14) earned the distinction of America East Scholar Athlete of the Year for women’s swimming with a 3.67 GPA in her field of Molecular and Cellular Biology/Biochemistry. UNH led all member institutions with 114 student-athletes named to the America East Fall 2013 Academic Honor Roll (minimum 3.0 GPA). Women’s cross country team had the highest percentage of honor roll recipients from a single team, with 33 of a possible 35 (94.3%) student-athletes recognized. Fifteen of those Wildcats received distinction on the Commissioner’s Honor Roll.
The UNH volleyball team placed 13 of 16 (81.3%) student-athletes on the Honor Roll and eight made the grade for the Commissioner’s Honor Roll. The men’s cross country had the next highest percentage among UNH teams at 76% (19 of 25 runners) and was followed closely by men’s soccer at 73.3% (22 of 30). In women’s soccer, 10 of the 15 ‘Cats who made the Honor Roll also made the Commissioner’s Roll and half of the 12 field hockey student-athletes on the Honor Roll were also on the Commissioner’s Roll. Overall, UNH boasted 73.1% of its student-athletes on the Honor Roll, and 46.5% of those ‘Cats made the Commissioner’s Roll.
The Academic Cup, established by the America East Board of Directors in 1995, is presented to the institution whose student-athletes record the highest grade-point-average during that academic year. The University of Hartford captured its third straight title with a GPA of 3.28. The University Maine took third place (3.16 GPA), followed by University of Vermont (3.15). Binghamton University finished fifth with a mark of 3.14 as Stony Brook University came in sixth with a 3.08. UMBC (3.07), University at Albany (3.03) and UMass Lowell (3.01) round out the nine-school conference.
America East is proud to have one of most comprehensive academic awards programs in the country. In addition to the Academic Cup, an All-Academic Team comprised of student-athletes that excel both academically and athletically is chosen in each of the conference’s 20 sports by a committee consisting of faculty athletic representatives, academic advisors and sports information directors. Additionally, a scholar-athlete, someone who distinguishes himself/herself as the top student-athlete in his/her sport, is awarded. From that group, one male and one female is selected the America East Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Finally, the conference recognizes all student-athletes who achieve at least a 3.0 GPA on its Academic Honor Roll, with those achieving a 3.50 average or better receiving Commissioner’s Honor Roll status.