Success in athletics starts with hard work in the classroom at the intercollegiate level. The East Central College Athletic Department has proven this to be a fact again this year as all three teams collected academic awards and winning records.
The overall athletic department grade point average was 3.16 and the school set another record winning the Missouri Community College Athletic Conference Harold Oetting Academic All Sports Award for an unprecedented seventh consecutive year. Since the 2009-10 academic year, the ECC Athletic Department has held the highest overall GPA among conference schools. Individual teams and athletes have received numerous accolades. All three teams were honored by the NJCAA as All-Academic teams with grade point averages of 3.30 for volleyball, 3.24 for softball, and 3.0 for soccer.
Twelve student athletes were also recipients of NJCAA Academic Student-Athlete Awards for their exceptional classroom performances with GPAs of 3.6 or better. Kayla Borcherding and Sarah Borgerding (women’s volleyball) received the Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence for achieving a 4.0 grade point average. Chelsea Delay (women’s volleyball) and softball players Dayla Gruenloh, Eden Henry, and Karissa Hoffman earned Superior Academic Achievement Award for overall GPAs of 3.80-3.99. Taylor Davis and Virginia Ward (women’s volleyball) were recognized for Exemplary Academic Achievement as were Kayla Kelly and Monica Kelley (women’s softball) and Zeke Little and Umoh Ufot (men’s soccer). Those six students achieved GPAs of 3.60-3.79.
Twenty-six students received Academic All-Conference honors for attaining grade point averages of 3.0 or high, while 23 ECC student athletes achieved Academic All-Region honor by earning GPAs of 3.25 or higher.
Gruenloh, a sophomore infielder for the Falcons, maintained a grade point average of 3.88 and was named ECC’s Scholar Athlete. Little was co-recipient of the Outstanding Student Award at ECC’s May commencement ceremony.
The softball team compiled a 28-22 record in 2016. The ECC soccer Falcons finished their season 16-4-1, advancing to the Region 16 final where they fell to Jefferson College. The volleyball team ended the season with a record of 24-20, losing to Northeastern Oklahoma A & M in the Region 16/District O semifinals.
“The consistency of team performance is truly dependent upon the work ethic of the coaches and players on the field and court along with their dedication to their studies,” noted Dr. Jay Mehrhoff, ECC athletic director.
National Junior College Athletic Association Honored Student Athletes
Kayla Bocherding-Women’s Volleyball Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence
Sarah Borgerding-Women’s Volleyball Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence
Dayla Gruenloh-Women’s Softball Superior Academic Achievement
Eden Henry-Women’s Softball Superior Academic Achievement
Karissa Hoffman-Women’s Softball Superior Academic Achievement
Chelsea Delay-Women’s Volleyball Superior Academic Achievement
Monica Kelley-Women’s Softball Exemplary Academic Achievement
Kayla Kelly-Women’s Softball Exemplary Academic Achievement
Taylor Davis-Women’s Volleyball Exemplary Academic Achievement
Virginia Ward-Women’s Volleyball Exemplary Academic Achievement
Zeke Little-Men’s Soccer Exemplary Academic Achievement
Umoh Ufot-Men’s Soccer Exemplary Academic Achievement
Region 16 Academic All-Region (3.25 GPA or higher)
Shelby Friend, Dayla Gruenloh, Eden Henry, Karissa Hoffman, Monica Kelley, Kayla Kelly, and Lizzy Swindell
Kayla Borcherding, Sarah Borgerding, Taylor Davis, Samantha Deason, Chelsea DeLay, Alexis Olney, Olivia Strode, Mackenzy Vedder, and Virginia Ward
Andrei Ciot, Archibald Darko-Boateng, Matt Hampton, Jindu Israel-Bolarinwa, Zeke Little, Gavyn Prsha, and Umoh Ufot
Missouri Community College Athletic Conference
Academic All-Conference (3.0 GPA or higher)
Shelby Friend, Dayla Gruenloh, Eden Henry, Karissa Hoffman, Monica Kelley, Kayla Kelly, Lizzy Swindell, and Makala Trail
Kayla Borcherding, Sarah Borgerding, Taylor Davis, Samantha Deason, Chelsea DeLay, Samantha Kolo, Alexis Olney, Olivia Strode, Mackenzy Vedder, and Virginia Ward
Andrei Ciot, Archibald Darko-Boateng, Darren Hamilton, Matt Hampton, Jindu Israel-Bolarinwa, Zeke Little, Gavyn Prsha, and Umoh Ufot