NEW ORLEANS - A total of 11 student athletes from Columbia found their names among the list of USTFCCCA All-Academic honorees, announced Friday, July 28. The Columbia men and women were both recipients of the team award as well.
To qualify for the team award, the average team GPA must be over 3.00, while the individual award requires the student-athlete to compile a cumulative GPA of 3.25 and either finish the regular season ranked in the national top 96 in an individual event or ranked in the national top 48 (collective listing) in a relay event, or participate in any round of the NCAA Division I Championships (including preliminary rounds).
The men had four athletes that fit the standard, including a senior, a junior, and two sophomores. Keenan Piper qualified for the NCAA East Prelims in the 3,000m steeplechase during his final season, while junior Ryan Thomas and sophomore Brian Zabilski took part in the 5,000m at the regional meet, and Alek Sauer was a qualifier in the 800m.
On the women's side, seven athletes were honored by the USTFCCCA, including a pair of NCAA Finalists. Junior Nell Crosby picked up second team All-American honors in the 3,000m steeplechase, while senior Natalie Tanner was one of three athletes to earn All-American honors in the 5,000m and 10,000m. Other honorees included senior Henna Rustami (5,000m), junior Sarah Hardie (800m), junior Erin Melly (3,000m steeplechase), junior Akua Obeng-Akrofi (200m & 400m), and first-year Abby McLaughlin (10,000m).