USD track athletes honored for academics

USD track athletes honored for academics The University of South Dakota women's track and field team has received the Academic All-American Award from the United States Track Coaches Association (USTCA).

This is the fourth time in the last five years the Coyotes have been recognized nationally for academic success by the USTCA. The team must carry a grade point average above 3.0 to be considered.

"This is a great accomplishment and a great tribute to our student athletes and how hard they work in the classroom and on the track field," said USD women's head coach Lucky Huber. "It's the neatest thing about being a coach. Not only winning conference championships but seeing our student-athletes succeed in the classroom."

In addition, seven female athletes who provisionally qualified for the national meet were acknowledged for their individual GPA over 3.2. Those individuals included senior Stefanie Senn of Burwell, NE; freshman Jamie Davis of Colton; junior Sara Deckert of Doland; freshman Jamie Strong of McCook Lake; sophomore Sandy Pelkofer of Rapid City; senior LaRae Klarenbeek of Spearfish; and freshman Krista Lederer of Fort Atkins, WI.

The women's team placed sixth overall in the NCAA Division II Track and Field Championships held last May at Raleigh, NC with standout performances by Deckert and sophomore Molly Wedel of Spencer, IA. The team also finished second at the North Central Conference meet held last May.

From the men's track and field team, there were five who provisionally qualified for the national meet and were recognized for their academic accomplishments of a GPA above 3.2. They include sophomore Josh Hofer of Freeman; junior Aaron Dykstra of Yankton; junior Tom Green of Hornick, IA; junior Jason Probasco of Woodbine, IA; and senior Matt Hoyt of Basin, WY, who was the 2000 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Athlete of the Year.

The men's track and field team placed third at the national championships, the highest finish in school history. They also won their first NCC outdoor track and field title since 1966. The men's team qualified 11 individuals in 12 events for the national championships.

The academic and athletic prowess by USD track and field student-athletes was exhibited recently when two Coyote student-athletes were awarded NCAA Division II Postgraduate Scholarships. Hoyt and senior Stefanie Senn of Burwell, NE, were both awarded the NCAA scholarships for their academic and athletic accomplishments in their last year of intercollegiate competition.

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