NORFOLK, Va. - The Simmons College Swimming & Diving squad was named a Scholar All-America Team by the College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association after posting the sixth-highest grade point average among NCAA Division III programs following the Spring semester, it was announced by the organization.
The Sharks were one of 173 NCAA Division III institutions to earn the distinction from the CSCAA. Simmons compiled a 3.66 grade point average for the spring semester and boasted 22 student-athletes, who earned a 3.5 or higher GPA for the semester, including two team members with a perfect 4.0. The Sharks earned Scholar All-America honors following the fall semester as well.
CSCAA Executive Director Joel Shinofield cited Simmons' success, noting: "Coach Mindy Williams has done an exceptional job building a top program in the pool and the classroom at Simmons." He added, "We are very fortunate to have schools like Simmons and people like President Helen Drinan and Director of Athletics Ali Kantor, who support these exceptional student-athletes."
For the first time in the 95-year history of the College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) more than 700 teams have received Scholar All-America recognition. In total, 720 teams, representing 443 institutions achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or higher during the Spring 2017 Semester.
To be selected as a CSCAA Scholar All-America Team, programs must have achieved a GPA of 3.00 or higher over the Spring semester.
Founded in 1922, the College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) – the oldest organization of college coaches in America -is a professional organization of college swimming and diving coaches dedicated to serving and providing leadership for the advancement of the sport of swimming & diving at the collegiate level.
The Sharks won their 13th straight Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship in December and placed second at the New England Intercollegiate Swimming & Diving Association Championship in February for their highest finish ever at the meet. Nine Simmons competitors earned All-NEISDA status a combined 41 times, including 36 medal-efforts and 21 gold medallions. Seven Sharks competed at the Eastern College Athletic Conference Open Championship on March 3-5 and saw the squad turn in an eighth-place showing, which was the highest finish in school annals and the top effort by any Division III school in the meet. Simmons finished with a perfect 12-0 mark during the dual meet season for the first undefeated campaign in program history in addition to breaking 14 school marks during the season, including four relay records. In April, the Simmons program saw 11 of its competitors named to the 2016-17 NEISDA All-Academic Team, while 18 team members were tapped for the 2016-17 GNAC All-Academic squad.