COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Among the record number of degree candidates at the Texas A&M commencement exercises this Friday and Saturday (May 9-10) at Reed Arena are 78 Aggie student-athletes.
“I am extremely proud of these young people for taking advantage of an opportunity to continue to play a sport they love, while also earning a degree from our world-class university,” Director of Athletics Eric Hyman said. “These student-athletes have put in a lot of time, effort and dedication to reach this goal, and everyone who has supported them throughout their lives is to be congratulated as well.”
“Many of these student-athletes have not only excelled on the playing fields and in the classrooms, but also through their community outreach efforts,” Hyman explained. “They are excellent role models and outstanding representatives of Texas A&M and Aggies everywhere.”
Recently a total of 351 student-athletes were honored at the Building Champions Awards (BCAs) for achieving a semester or cumulative 3.0 grade point average or higher during the 2013-14 school year, including 15 who were named Outstanding Athletic Scholars for posting a perfect 4.0 GPA for at least one semester.
Jake Matthews, an Aggie All-American football player who graduated from the Mays Business School in December of 2013 and is expected to be a first-round NFL draft pick in Thursday’s draft, and Meghan Streight, an All-SEC Aggie women’s soccer player who started every match of her Aggie career received the President’s Awards.
The President’s Award is the highest award that is presented to a student-athlete at Texas A&M by the Athletics Department. The individual receiving this award is someone who displays extraordinary talents in areas of athletics, scholarship, leadership and service.
Dr. Karan Watson, Provost and Executive President for Academic Affairs, presented the President’s Award to Streight from the soccer team and Matthews from the football team.
The Bill Erwin Male and Female Scholar-Athletes of the Year at Texas A&M were from the men’s swimming and diving athlete Paul-Marc Schweitzer and Allie Sawatzky from the women’s volleyball team.
The awards are named for longtime Texas A&M athletics supporter and local philanthropist Bill Erwin. The recipients have to be in their final year of athletic eligibility and demonstrate outstanding academic and athletic performances.
Four senior Aggie student-athletes were recipients of a combined $25,000 in postgraduate scholarships from the SEC. The Brad Davis SEC Community Service Postgraduate Scholarship honorees were Blake McDonald from the men’s basketball team and women’s soccer player Nore Skelton, while Paul-Marc Schweitzer from men’s swimming and diving and Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar, a three-sport athlete from women’s tennis, women’s soccer and women’s basketball earned the H. Boyd McWhorter Postgraduate Scholarships.
In this second year in the SEC, the Aggies have brought home SEC titles from the women’s soccer regular season as well as the tournament championship and the men’s tennis team recently claimed the SEC Tournament Championship.
Five of the Aggie squads finished in the Top 10 of their respective national polls, with women’s swimming and diving currently holding top honors as the team finished fourth in the final NCAA Championships. The Aggie women’s indoor track and field squad finished fifth while the men’s indoor unit finished eighth. The women’s basketball team reached the Elite 8 of the NCAA Championships and women’s soccer ended the season ranked No. 8. The Aggie football team ended the year with their third straight bowl victory and another Top 25 finish.
Several sports are winding up their respective season:
* Men’s and women’s outdoor track and field teams will compete in the SEC Championships in Lexington, Ky. Both squads are currently ranked in the top five in the country.
* Men’s and women’s tennis squads will host NCAA first and second round action this weekend at Texas A&M’s Mitchell Tennis Center. Both are poised to make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, with the women’s team ranked No. 9 in the country and the men’s squad ranked No. 10.
* Softball is ranked No. 24 in the country and awaits NCAA Championship plans.
* Baseball team is making a run to the postseason as the Aggies are coming off a weekend of taking two-of-three from LSU at Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park and will close out the regular season with a three-game set against Ole Miss (May 15-17).
* Golf, the men’s team is ranked No. 11 and will compete in the NCAA Regional next week, while the women’s golf team is No. 32 in the nation and begins NCAA Regional competition this week.
All six commencement ceremonies are at Reed Arena and are scheduled for 9 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
78 MAY 2014 STUDENT-ATHLETE GRADUATES
Mariah Agre Volleyball
Niall Angus Men’s Tennis
Sarah Balfour Women’s Track & Field
Lindsey Bernbaum Equestrian
Kayla Briel Equestrian
Jack Burley Men’s Swimming & Diving
Katherine Caldwell Women’s Swimming & Diving
*Skylar Collins Women’s Basketball
Stephen Curry Men’s Track & Field
Kelly Czumbie Women’s Track & Field
Shawn Dalglish Women’s Track & Field
Jermaine Davis Men’s Track & Field
Micah Dettmer Men’s Track & Field
Mel Dumezich Softball
Omar Enriquez Tenorio Men’s Swimming & Diving
Connor Fields Football
Donique’ Flemings Women’s Track & Field
Alex Freeman Football
Allison Garrett Softball
Sam Giamfortone Football
Caitlin Gilmore Women’s Track & Field
Lyndsey Gnatzig Soccer
Jonathan Gomez Men’s Track & Field
Haley Gooch Women’s Track & Field
Garrett Gramling Football
Sam Humphreys Men’s Track & Field
Toney Hurd, Jr. Football
Aliese Hyde Women’s Track & Field
Steven Jenkins Football
Kevin Jenschke Football
Jason Jester Baseball
Chelsea Jones Soccer
Ryan Kelley Men’s Golf
Travis Labhart Football
Breeja Larson Women’s Swimming & Diving
Tyler Lee Men’s Track & Field
Rachel Lenz Soccer
Caleb Little Football
Janell Lysack Women’s Golf
Alyssa Martin Equestrian
Meagan May Softball
Ibukun Mayungbe Women’s Track & Field
John McClure Men’s Swimming & Diving
Caroline McElhany Women’s Swimming & Diving
Maureen McLaine Women’s Swimming & Diving
Clint Naron Football
Emily Neubert Women’s Swimming & Diving
Justin Ortega Football
Cameron Peck Men’s Golf
Dustin Phillips Men’s Track & Field
Jonathan Puffer Football
*Oscar Ramirez Men’s Track & Field
Parker Ray Baseball
Kaydee Rayburn Softball
Natalie Reeves Women’s Golf
Heather Reynolds Volleyball
CiCi Riddle Equestrian
*Joseph Roberts Men’s Track & Field
Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar Women’s Tennis, Basketball, Soccer
Allie Sawatzky Volleyball
Jade Scott Men’s Golf
Tess Simpson Women’s Swimming & Diving
Nora Skelton Soccer
Ashley Skold Equestrian
Seth Smith Football
Cristina Stancu Women’s Tennis
Gavin Stansbury Football
Troy Stein Baseball
Casey Strong Men’s Track & Field
Wen Sun Women’s Tennis
Charlie Thomas Football
Claire Toomey Women’s Swimming & Diving
Taran Tyler Softball
Nazari Urbina Women’s Tennis
Ellie Wilkins Equestrian
Dylan Williams Men’s Track & Field
*Austin Wilson Men’s Swimming & Diving
Brandon Wood Baseball
*Denotes graduate degree.