Three Named to USTFCCCA Women’s All-Academic Squad; Men and Women Earn Team Awards

NEW ORLEANS, La. – Three Saint Leo women's cross country runners earned on a spot on the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-Academic Team, it was announced by league officials. In addition, both the men's and women's squads were named All-Academic Teams.

The freshman pair of Tereza Novotna and Holly Blackburn, as well as junior Jillian Browne found each found themselves on the team for the first time in their careers.

Blackburn enjoyed a successful season both on and off the course as she was a top-three finisher in each of her seven events this season. Novotna put together an accolade-filled fall as she was named Sunshine State Conference Freshman and Runner of the Year, as well as posting the Lions first-ever berth into the NCAA Championships.

Browne, a consistent runner all season, finished runner-up in each of her seven events ran for Saint Leo and currently holds two 6K records.

A total of 354 student-athletes represent the 117 institutions that compose the group. Among the nation's squads, seven earned six All-Academic honors for the season, including Western State, Saginaw Valley State, Philadelphia, Edinboro, U-Mary, Grand Valley State, and Adams State. Another 19 teams notched five on the All-Academic list. Among conferences, the PSAC led them all with 58 honorees, followed by the GLIAC's 37.

To qualify for the USTFCCCA All-Academic Track and Field Team in Division II, the student-athlete must have compiled a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or greater through the most-recent semester, completed at least 12 credit hours in the semester of cross country competition, and placed in the top 50 percent at the most recent NCAA National Championships or in the top 30 percent at the NCAA Regional Championships.

On the team side, both the Saint Leo men's and women's squads were selected to the USTFCCCA All-Academic list. The men concluded the year with a cumulative grade-point-average of 3.15, while the women finished the fall semester with an impressive 3.50 grade-point-average.

To qualify as a USTFCCCA All-Academic Cross Country Team, the team must have a cumulative team GPA of 3.00 or better and have compiled a score (finished at least five runners) at their respective NCAA regional championship.

For more information on the Saint Leo men's and women's cross country teams, visit SaintLeoLions.com.