Posted 1 year ago
By John Axtell
The Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball and softball teams, along with eight Cougar student-athletes, were recently honored by the National Junior College Athletic Association for their academics the past season after the NJCAA released it All-Academic Team and Individual honors this week.
The women’s basketball team had the biggest honor as they were among the top 15 women’s basketball teams in academics. The Cougar women, who won the Region IX title in March, finished with a 3.39 grade point average.
The Cougar women also had four players earn Academic Achievement. Gritt Ryder, a sophomore from Denmark, earned a Superior Academic Achievement, finishing with a 3.83 GPA. Earning Exemplary Academic Achievement were Jessica Aratani of Morrill (3.72), Idil Ozbayrak of Turkey (3.66), and Kelsey Doddridge of Kersey, Colo., (3.62).
The women’s softball and soccer teams also earned All-Academic recognition.
Cougar softball players Kayla Romey and Melanie Rowson were also awarded a Superior Academic Achievement honor. Rowson, a sophomore from Vancouver, British Columbia, finished with a 3.91 GPA. Rowson was also awarded the WNCC Female Highest GPA honor in April.
Romey, a Gering High graduate, earned a Superior Achievement with a 3.8 GPA. Both Romey and Rowson have signed to play at Friends University next year.
The Cougar women’s soccer team had two players earn Exemplary Academic Achievement honors. Ashley Baker and Kelsey Newby, both from Centennial, Colo., finished with 3.62 GPAs last season.
Over 1,600 NJCAA student-athletes met the requirements for individual academic honors, including 169 that earned the Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence (4.0 GPA). Superior Academic Achievement (3.8-plus GPA) honors went to 592 student-athletes and over 900 met the standard for Exemplary Academic Achievement (3.6-plus GPA).
Academic team accolades (3.0 or higher team GPA) were earned by over 500 programs with 24 winning the distinction as the Academic Teams of the Year.