Bobcat track & field reaps honors

NEW ORLEANS — The United States Track and Field and Cross Country Association (USTFCCCA) released their latest set of academic awards and Montana State featured seven track and field student-athletes, as well as the entire women’s team, garnering All-Academic honors.

The Bobcat Women posted a 3.32 cumulative grade point average and ranked among the top half of the 187 programs that earned the recognition for their classroom efforts. The Women’s Track and Field team was among nine Big Sky Conference programs receiving the academic recognition, including newcomer North Dakota, who holds the second highest GPA in the nation.

Heather Haug continues to reap the benefits of her collegiate career, earning her fourth individual All-Academic award. Haug closed out a prolific career with five Big Sky Conference titles (four individual, one relay) and seven all-conference awards.

Haug is joined by Heather Demorest and Sarah McGree were the other two Bobcat Women earning the award for their academic and athletic excellence. This is McGree’s second time being named to this prestigious list and in her final collegiate appearance, she earned the bronze medal in the indoor pentathlon when MSU hosted the 2013 Big Sky Championships.

Demorest picks up her final award of huge 2013 season. After her first individual All-Big Sky finish and a title in the Distance Medley Relay, Demorest’s academic efforts also picked up time, figuratively, this year.

Demorest, Haug and McGree were three of 710 female student-athletes from 187 institutions on the 2013 list.

For the men, the four Bobcats were among 448 total student-athletes from 149 institutions who earned the recognition for their efforts in the classroom and their sport.

David Phillips, like Haug, also closes out his career with his fourth All-Academic award on top of several Big Sky Championship trophies. He won the hammer throw at the conference meet in May and eventually advanced on to the NCAA Championships where he placed 12th overall to earn Honorable Mention All-American status.

Jeff Mohl, who redshirted the outdoor season this spring, picked up his third academic nod from the USTFCCCA. His impressive GPA along with a Big Sky title in the indoor heptathlon, and 11th place finish the NCAA Championships helped seal his three-peat of the honor.

Making the list for the first time in their careers were Jacob Kirk and Nick Melone. Kirk placed ninth in the 3,000 steeplechase at the conference meet and also made his career debut at the NCAA West Preliminary meet. Kirk was also a major contributor to the conference championship Distance Medley Relay team. Melone, who put out consistent performances in the sprints in 2013, including a ninth place spot in the 100 at the outdoor Big Sky meet, finished as high as fifth at the conference level at the indoor meet in Bozeman. Melone ran a leg of the Distance Medley with Kirk at the 2013 Alex Wilson Invitational where they set a new program record.

To qualify for the USTFCCCA All-Academic Track and Field Team, the student-athlete must have compiled a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 and have met either of the following athletic standards: for the indoor season, a student-athlete must have finished 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 on the official NCAA POP list provided by; for the outdoor season, a student-athlete must have participated in any round of the NCAA Division I Championships (including preliminary rounds).

— MSU Sports Information

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