BENNINGTON — For the fifth straight season, the Southern Vermont College women's soccer team was awarded the National Soccer Coaches Association of America's team academic award.
The accolade recognizes the 2015 Mountaineer squad which posted a cumulative grade point average of 3.28 following the spring 2016 semester. SVC head coach Michael Zauzig, who is currently in his sixth year at the helm of the Southern Vermont women's crew, has seen every previous team he has coached at the College earn the honor.
"This award was my number-one goal when I arrived at SVC," Zauzig said. "Our players are student-athletes first, and I want that to be at the front of everything they do. More than anything, I'm extremely proud that we have been able to find the right balance to have success in the classroom and on the field. Five-for-five is a tremendous achievement, and I hope we're celebrating our sixth-consecutive award this time next year."
To be eligible, a team must collectively register an average GPA of 3.0 or higher through the entire academic year. A total of 578 women's teams across the country, representing all collegiate divisions, earned the 2015-16 award while 315 men's squads worked their way to pick it up; 223 institutions saw both their men's and women's teams reel in it this year.
Southern Vermont was joined on the list by the Lesley University women's soccer team, the only two NECC teams to win the award. To see a full list of the award recipients, visit http://www.nscaa.com/
The members of last year's team included: Carissa Bottisti, Karina Meza, Erica Nichols, Lauren Nesshoever, Kelsey Hamister, Chelsea Zukowski, Rachel Cudo, Sydnee Julian, Abigail Rosas, Stephany Ferreira, Lisa Jones, Natalie Rose Canterbury, Naya Cerda, Katelyn Raymond, Jess Magee, Molly Madore, Sofi Sorriento, Paige Vitale, Ally McNamee and Melissa Mascari.