NEW ORLEANS – A pair of Hanover men's cross country athletes, along with the entire women's squad was honored by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Friday afternoon for their work not only on the course but also in the classroom.
Senior Joe Rector (Aurora, Ind.) and junior Jacob Hedrick (Memphis, Ind.) garnered individual academic all-American accolades, while the women earned the scholar team award.
In order to qualify for the individual honor, a student-athlete must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 or higher and finish in the top 25 percent of their respective regional championship. For a team to qualify to be considered, it must have competed and compiled a team score at an NCAA Regional meet, while also holding a minimum 3.10 GPA.
Rector is garnering his second cross country academic all-American honor, as he placed 35th at the NCAA Division III Great Lakes Regional Championship back in November. Hedrick, on the other hand, paced the squad at the regional meet with a time of 26:12.3, good enough to earn 27th place and his first scholar all-American award from USTFCCCA. The duo was also tabbed by USTFCCCA as all-region selections for their performance in the fall.
Overall, there were 668 student-athletes named USTFCCCA All-Academic, with 300 of them being men. A total of five HCAC male athletes earned the award, with Hanover being the only school to have multiple winners on the men's side.
The women's team has now received the honor four straight years and it is also their they sixth award in the last seven years. Under the guidance of first year head coach Brady Wells, the nine-athlete squad compiled a 3.12 GPA during the 2017 fall semester.
A combined 388 men's and women's NCAA Division III teams received the honor for the 2017 fall season, with 221 being women's squads. Hanover was also one of seven HCAC institutions to win the award on the women's side.
Contact: Tyler Jester