May 18, 2012

Four earn Academic All-District honors

GROVE CITY, Pa. -- Four Grove City College student-athletes earned Division III Academic All-District At-Large First Team honors from Capital One and the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Friday morning.

Senior tennis player Megan Bennett (Poland, Ohio/Poland) and junior swimmer Angela Palumbo (Washington, Pa./Trinity) each earned First Team on the women's side. Junior tennis player Caleb Fuller (Columbus, Ind./Homeschooled) and junior swimmer Eric Fairchild (Corry, Pa./Corry) both earn First Team distinction on the men's squad.

As First Team honorees, all four student-athletes will now advance to the Division III Academic All-America ballot. The Division III Academic All-America teams will be announced in June.

A 2011 Capital One/CoSIDA College Division Academic All-American, Bennett earned her third career Academic All-District honor. This season, Bennett helped the Wolverines earn their fourth straight trip to the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament while primarily playing second singles and first doubles.

She teamed with senior Stacy Moon (Lima, Ohio/Shawnee) to win the Presidents' Athletic Conference title at first doubles last October. Bennett also earned PAC runner up at No. 2 singles, helping Grove City win its 25th straight conference title. During the fall, Bennett went 9-7 in singles play and 13-3 in doubles action. She is a four-year letterwinner and co-captained the 2011-12 team.

In the classroom, Bennett owns a 3.98 cumulative grade-point average as a finance major. She is a Dean's List student who has been named to the conference's Academic Honor Roll. Bennett has earned induction into the Operation Top Management business honorary along with All-Academic recognition from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. She is the treasurer of the Omicron Delta Kappa honorary and the secretary of the Delta Mu Delta honorary.

Palumbo is the most-decorated female student-athlete in Grove City College history, having earned 15 career All-America citations at the NCAA Division III Championships. She earned All-America honors in the 50 free, 100 free and 200 free on an individual basis and contributed to All-America performances in all three free relays at the 2012 NCAA Championships in March.

Her efforts helped Grove City place 10th nationally in the team standings. In 2010, Palumbo captured All-America distinction in five events, helping the Wolverines finish 11th at the NCAA meet. Last year, she garnered All-America in four relay events as Grove City again took 11th nationally.

Palumbo owns school records in the 50, 100 and 200 free events and in all five relays. She has helped Grove City capture three straight Presidents’ Athletic Conference titles.

A mathematics major, Palumbo owns a 3.71 GPA and has been nominated for CoSIDA Academic All-America consideration. She is a Dean’s List student and has been named to the conference’s Academic Honor Roll. Palumbo has also received the Collegiate Swim Coaches Association’s All-Academic award. She has been inducted into the Kappa Delta Pi education honorary and the Kappa Mu Epsilon math honorary. She has been awarded the Presidential Scholarship and the College’s Scholar-Athlete honor.

Earlier this month, Palumbo became the first junior to earn the College's Sportswoman of the Year award.

Fuller earned his initial First Team All-District honor after receiving Second Team College Division recognition in 2011. This season, he helped lead Grove City to the regional semifinals of the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament for the second straight year.

He won the conference title at second doubles and earned runner-up at No. 2 singles. Fuller went 8-7 in singles play and 12-4 in doubles action. He helped Grove City win the conference title April 21 in Erie, Pa.

Fuller has earned a 3.93 cumulative GPA while majoring in economics. He has earned Dean's List with Distinction honors and has also been named to the conference's Academic Honor Roll. Fuller also received "Scholar-Athlete" recognition from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association and has been inducted into the Omicron Delta Epsilon economics honorary.

Fairchild earned his first Academic All-District honor after helping Grove City's men's swimming and diving team to its fifth straight conference title. Fairchild provisionally qualified for the NCAA Division III Championships in the 400 free relay after winning the PAC title in that event. He also earned conference runner-up in the 50 and 100 free events.

He has earned First Team All-PAC honors in each of the last two seasons. Fairchild is fourth all-time at the College in the 200 free (1:42.41) and fifth in the 50 free (21.00). He is a three-year letterman.

Fairchild has achieved Dean's List with Distinction recognition along with placement on the conference's Academic Honor Roll. He is also a Grove City College Presidential Scholarship recipient.

The 2011-12 academic year marks the first year that CoSIDA has based its Academic All-America program on individual divisions within college athletics. Currently, CoSIDA honors student-athletes in NCAA Divisions I, II and III, along with a "College" division that includes NAIA institutions and junior colleges. Prior to this year, the College Division included NCAA Divisions II and III, as well as NAIA schools.

Grove City is now part of District IV for the CoSIDA Academic All-America program. District IV includes all of the NCAA Division III programs in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  

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