Spartanburg, S.C. – Led by 11 student-athletes who posted a perfect 4.0 GPA for the year, USC Upstate placed a school record 149 student-athletes on the A-Sun All-Academic Team to highlight the department’s academic accomplishments in 2014-15.
Upstate’s 149 all-academic team selections this year topped the all-time school record of 143 set in 2012-13. It marks the second time in eight years in the A-Sun the Spartans have topped 140 all-academic team selections. In total, Upstate placed 64.34 percent of its student-athletes on the team. A student-athlete earns A-Sun All-Academic Team honors for achieving a 3.0 GPA or better for the academic year.
“I am very proud of our student-athletes for their commitment to their academic work and I congratulate them on their success,” said Lee Fowler, Athletic Director at Upstate. “The time and physical demands placed on student-athletes within their respective sports are tough and being able to balance their commitment to academics and athletics is not easy. As a group, our student-athletes have proven to not only be able to handle the pressure, but to excel in doing so. I could not be more proud of their efforts and dedication in receiving a quality education and moving toward receiving their degrees.”
Upstate had 11 student-athletes, good for third in the A-Sun, to achieve a perfect 4.0 GPA for the 2014-15 academic year. The Spartans with a perfect 4.0 GPA were Mario Blessing (men’s basketball), Marche Llanos (softball), Rachel Reiling (women’s golf), Nina Roell (women’s tennis), Nona Ruppert (women’s tennis), Emma Safranek (women’s soccer), Jaden Savage (baseball), Leon Schwarzer (men’s soccer), Viktor Selander (men’s tennis), Ramon Simonetti (men’s tennis) and Isabel von Stryk (women’s tennis).
In addition to the A-Sun All-Academic Team selections, six Spartans received career academic achievement honors in being named either an A-Sun Presidential Scholar, Commissioner’s Scholar or Conference Scholar. Men’s basketball player Mario Blessing and women’s golfer Rachel Reiling were named A-Sun Presidential Scholars for completing 48 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 3.8 or better, exhausting their eligibility and earning their bachelor’s degrees in the same year.
Women’s soccer player Samantha Seelinger was named an A-Sun Commissioner’s Scholar for completing 48 credit hours at Upstate with a cumulative GPA of 3.6-3.799, exhausting her eligibility and earning her bachelor’s degree in the same year. Softball player Dana Landers, baseball player Erik Samples and men’s tennis player Viktor Selander were named A-Sun Conference Scholars for completing 48 credit hours at Upstate, owning a cumulative GPA of 3.4-3.599, and either receiving their degrees or exhausting their eligibility in the same year.
Upstate’s student-athletes helped lead the conference in several sports with four Spartans earning A-Sun Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors. Earning scholar-athlete of the year honors in 2014-15 were Marvin Schmiege for men’s soccer, Mario Blessing for men’s basketball, Rachel Reiling for women’s golf and Lexi Shubert for softball. In addition, Schmiege was named a Capital One Second Team Academic All-American.