Iowa Earns National Academic Team, Individual Awards

March 5, 2012

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa field hockey team has been awarded the 2011 Gladiator by SGI/NFHCA Division I National Academic Team Award. The National Academic Team Award recognizes those institutions that have achieved a team GPA of 3.0 or higher during the first semester of the 2011-12 academic year.

In addition, eight members of the University of Iowa field hockey team have been named to the 2011 Gladiator by SGI/NFHCA Collegiate National Academic Squad. The National Academic Squad recognizes student-athletes who achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher through the first semester of the 2011-12 academic year.

Senior Becca Spengler, juniors Sarah Drake and Kathleen McGraw, sophomores Danielle Peirson, Niki Schultheis and Marike Stribos, and freshmen Brynn Gitt and Sara Watro all received the honor. All three sophomores earned the honor last year during their rookie campaigns. Additionally, Drake and McGraw both earned the accolade for the third time in their careers, while Spengler garnered the honor for the fourth time. Spengler is one of eight Big Ten student-athletes this year to become a four-year recipient of the award.

“The NFHCA Academic Team Award is a great honor to receive,” said head coach Tracey Griesbaum. “It shows how dedicated our student-athletes are to their academics. We are especially proud of the eight individuals who exceeded a 3.3 semester GPA. To maintain such a high level of success while competing and traveling is a great accomplishment. This team is raising the bar for future Hawkeye field hockey teams.”

Forty-four percent of Iowa’s team (eight out of a possible 18 members) were named to the team. The Hawkeyes have had eight student-athletes named to the squad in each of the last two seasons. The eight Hawkeyes, in each of the last two seasons, are the most Iowa has had named to the squad over the last six years.