NEW ORLEANS (Feb. 25) – Three members of the California University of Pennsylvania men’s cross country team received U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-Academic status on Thursday, announced the organization.
Graduate student Eric Reger (Manor, Pa./Hempfield), junior Tony Russo (Pittsburgh, Pa./Plum) and freshman Chris Werner (Chesapeake, Va./Western Branch) were named to the USTFCCA Division II All-Academic Team
Despite suffering an injury midway through the season, Reger posted four finishes in the top three overall in 2009. A three-time Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Scholar-Athlete, he won the individual crown and helped the Vulcans capture the team title at the Marietta Invitational in September.
Russo finished among the team leaders at both the PSAC and NCAA Atlantic Regional Championships. The Pittsburgh native received the USTFCCCA All-Academic honor for a second-straight year.
Werner was the top newcomer for the Vulcans in 2009, posting a team-best finish in the last three races of the season. At the NCAA Atlantic Regional Championships, the 5-11 freshman crossed the finish line 25th overall in a field of nearly 125 runners.
The PSAC again led all conferences with 27 student-athletics on the All-Academic list. A total of 152 male cross country runners received All-Academic honors, representing 78 schools from across the nation.
To qualify for All-Academic honors, a student-athlete must have completed at least 12 semester/quarter hours through the semester of competition at the institution to be eligible. The student-athlete must have at least a 3.25 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) and have placed in the top 30 percent of total number of athletes eligible to compete at the respective regional championships or have placed in the top 50 percent of the field at the NCAA Division II Championships.