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Four Tech Scholar-Athletes Honored by ACC

Feb. 23, 2005

ATLANTA – Georgia Tech volleyball all-America Jayme Gergen, football standout Nate Curry and Atlantic Coast Conference track champion Zeb Sion are among the 29 ACC student-athletes who have been named recipients of postgraduate scholarships by the conference, while all-America golfer Nicholas Thompson will receive an honorary scholarship award.

Curry and Sion will receive the Weaver-James-Corrigan Postgraduate Scholarship, Gergen will receive the inaugural Jim and Pat Thacker Postgraduate Scholarship Award, and Thompson will receive the Weaver-James-Corrigan Honorary Award.

Gergen, a middle blocker from Topeka, Kansas, earned all-ACC and honorable mention all-America honors in leading the Tech volleyball team to four consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, including trips to the Elite Eight and Sweet 16 the last two years. The Psychology major and Academic All-District selection graduates this spring and plans to attend graduate school at Georgia Tech.

Curry, a wide receiver from Miami, Fla., was Tech’s second-leading receiver last fall and finished his career among the top 15 on the Yellow Jackets’ career receiving lists. He graduated last May with a degree in Building Construction and has begun work on a second degree in Management. He has been named to the ACC All-Academic football team the last two years.

Sion, the 2004 ACC champion in the shot put, will graduate in May with a degree in Management and plans to work toward a physical therapy degree at Idaho State University in his hometown of Pocatello, Idaho.

Thompson, one of the nation’s top amateur golfers and a native of Coral Springs, Fla., is a three-time all-America as well as an Academic All-District honoree. After graduating in May with a degree in Management, he plans to pursue a career in professional golf.

Complete biographical information for Tech’s four honorees, as well as other ACC scholarship receipients, is below.

The Weaver-James-Corrigan and Jim and Pat Thacker scholarships are given to selected student-athletes who intend to pursue a graduate-level degree following graduation. Each recipient will receive $5,000 to use towards his or her graduate education. Student-athletes receiving the award have performed with distinction in both the classroom and in their respective sports, while demonstrating exemplary conduct in the community. In addition to those receiving scholarship funds, six student-athletes will receive Weaver-James-Corrigan Honorary Awards, recognizing for outstanding performance in both athletic competition and the classroom by athletes who intend to pursue professional or Olympic competition rather than postgraduate study.

The Weaver-James-Corrigan award is named in honor of the late Jim Weaver and Bob James as well as Gene Corrigan, all former ACC commissioners. The Thacker award, being presented for the first time, is awarded in honor of the late Jim and Pat Thacker of Charlotte, N.C. Jim Thacker was the primary play-by-play announcer for the ACC’s first television network. Recipients of the award must demonstrate outstanding performance both in athletic competition and in the classroom and intend to further their education through post-graduate studies at an ACC institution.

Recipients of the Weaver-James-Corrigan Awards are as follows: Clemson – Mary Nell Green (rowing), Franchele Klaus (swimming), Gisele Oliveira (track & field); Duke – Michael Hatch (cross country/track & field), Stephanie Istvan (volleyball); Florida State – Aaron Cheesman (baseball), Mihaela Moldovan (tennis), Jezali Ratliff (soccer); Georgia Tech – Nate Curry (football), Zebulon Sion (track & field); Maryland – Megan Knepper (swimming), Katayoon Shahrokh (volleyball); Miami – Yassamin Haririnia (rowing); North Carolina – Carey Fetting-Smith (field hockey), Olivia Trusty (gymnastics), Catherine Wright (volleyball); NC State – Eric Hoverstad (track & field), Leslie Jimison (cross country/track & field), Anderson Smith (cross country/track & field); Virginia – Luke Anderson (swimming), Gillian Hatch (soccer); Virginia Tech – Thomas Blaszak (baseball), Erin Gibson (basketball), Jessica Morris (cross country/track & field); Wake Forest – Karin Coetzee (tennis), Ashley Hoagland (golf).

Recipients of the Jim and Pat Thacker Awards are as follows: Duke – Johanna Bischof (field hockey); Georgia Tech – Jayme Gergen (volleyball); Virginia – Christopher Greenwood (swimming).

Recipients of the Weaver-James-Corrigan Honorary Awards are as follows: Duke – Casey McCluskey (soccer); Georgia Tech – Nicholas Thompson (golf); Maryland – Justin Maxwell (baseball); North Carolina – JW Brown (football); Virginia – Jessica Trainor (soccer); Virginia Tech – Bryan Randall (football).

The 35 student-athletes will be honored Thursday, April 14, 2005, in Greensboro, N.C., at a luncheon hosted by the Nat Greene Kiwanis. The luncheon will be held at the Koury Convention Center.

Luke Anderson, Virginia, Swimming

Member of the ACC 50th Anniversary Swimming Team … 13-time All-American, including three first-team honors … 17-time ACC champion … 2002 ACC Swimmer of the Year and ACC Championship Meet Most Valuable Swimmer … 11-time Swimming and Diving Performer of the Week, including five times this season … Holds the school record in the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle and swam on Virginia’s school record setting 200, 400 and 800 freestyle relays … Did not compete in 2003-04 to train for the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Johanna Bischof, Duke, Field Hockey

Duke’s career leader in career assists and assists in a season … Ranks third all-time in the ACC with 63 assists, just eight shy of the conference record … Career assist total is also tied for 13th all-time in NCAA history … Led the NCAA with 30 assists, setting a school record along the way in 2003 … Ranked third with 137 career points and 10th with 37 career goals at Duke … South Region All-America selection … 2003 All-ACC and ACC All-Tournament Team selection … Three-time ACC Player of the Week honoree.

Thomas Blaszak, Virginia Tech, Baseball

Moved into the starting lineup at second base in 2004 … Batted .300 and led the team in walks with 34, while notching a .965 fielding mark over 53 games as a junior … Named to the first team of the 2004 College Sports Information Directors’ Academic All-America squad … Won the prestigious Skelton Award, which recognizes academic excellence among Virginia Tech athletes.

JW Brown, North Carolina, Football

2004 First-Team All-ACC selection … First-Team All-America by Pro Football Weekly … Finalist for the Dave Rimington Award as the nation’s top center … Chosen to play in the Senior Bowl … Named ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week three times in 2004 … Did not allow a single sack in 2003 … Started 39 games in his career, including 36 straight at center from 2002-04.

Aaron Cheesman, Florida State, Baseball

Voted the team’s captain the last two years … Two-time member of the President’s List (4.0 GPA), four-time member of the Dean’s List (3.5) and four-time ACC Honor Roll selection … Started every game behind the plate in 2004 … Set career highs in every offensive category from 2003 to 2004, batting .347, starting 68 games, scoring 50 runs, recording 83 hits, droving in 42 runs and registering 116 total bases.

Karin Coetzee, Wake Forest, Tennis

Named All-ACC in her junior year, leading the team with 28 singles wins … Has been ranked nationally throughout her career, including a No. 10 position in February 2003 … Opened her senior year with a national ranking of No. 16 in singles and No. 33 in doubles … Holds the best overall record of all her teammates with a 39-32 singles mark and a 14-9 ACC record … Carries a winning record in doubles (40-29) … Played every singles match except three at the No. 1 position during her junior year … Named the team’s MVP in her sophomore year.

Nate Curry, Georgia Tech, Football

Two-year starter and four-year letterwinner … Two-time member of the ACC All-Academic football team . . . Also named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll … Ranks 13th in Georgia Tech history in career receptions with 92 and 14th in career receiving yards with 1,185 … 2004 Team Captain … Georgia Tech Tower Award (presented by Office of Minority Education and Development to recognize academic achievement by minority students) … Awarded Bobby Dodd Scholarship for 2003-04 as Tech’s top male scholar-athlete … 2004 ACC Top Six for Service Award … Three-year member of the Georgia Tech Student-Athlete Advisory Board.

Carey Fetting-Smith, North Carolina, Field Hockey

Four-year starter and two-year team captain … Helped North Carolina to 2004 ACC Championship, the team’s first crown since 1997 … Recipient of the 2003 Carmen and Michael Hooker Leadership Award … Played for the 2004 U.S. Under-21 Team, the 2003 U.S. Under-20 Team and the 2002 U.S. Under-19 National Team … Named to the NFHCA National Academic Team and to the ACC Academic Honor Roll … Serves on the Student-Athlete Council.

Jayme Gergen, Georgia Tech, Volleyball

Three-year starter and four-year letterwinner … Helped Georgia Tech to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances … 2004 Honorable Mention All-American and All-East Region by American Volleyball Coaches Association … 2004 First-Team All-ACC … Led the ACC and ranked 11th nationally in hitting percentage in 2004 … Ranks second in Georgia Tech career hitting percentage and fourth in total blocks … 2004 CoSIDA Academic All-District III Volleyball Second Team … Three-time ACC Academic Honor Roll honoree … Dean’s List every semester at Georgia Tech.

Mary Nell Green, Clemson, Rowing

2003-04 first-team All-South Region rower … CRCA National Scholar Athlete … Rowed with the Varsity 8+ and the First Varsity 4+ as a junior last season … Named second team All-Region … 2003 National Scholar Athlete … ACC Crew of the Week for the Varsity 8+ on March 17, 2003 … Participated with the Novice 8+ in 2001-02 … Three-time ACC Academic Honor Roll honoree.

Christopher Greenwood, Virginia, Swimming

2004-05 Team Captain … Two-time Honorable Mention All-American … Competed in the NCAA Championships three consecutive years … School and ACC record-holder in the 200 and 400 individual medley events … Five-time ACC champion … Competed in the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials … 2002 ACC Rookie of the Year … Student Athlete Mentor in 2003-04 and 2004-05 … President of Virginia’s 2004-05 Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and the SAAC representative to the ACC.

Erin Gibson, Virginia Tech, Basketball

Ranks fourth all-time at Virginia Tech with 117 career blocks, just 16 blocks shy of third place in the Hokie record books … One of 16 Hokies to score 1,000 career points … Earned 2002 and 2004 Lady Luck Classic Most Valuable Player … Named to the 2002, 2003 and 2004 Lady Luck Classic All-Tournament Teams … Named to the 2004 Academic All-America District III University Division Second Team … Twice named to the BIG EAST Academic All-Star Team.

Yassamin Haririnia, Miami, Rowing

Three-year letterwinner … Competed with the Varsity 4 in 2003-04 … Gold medalist at the 2004 FIRA State Championships … Silver medalist at the 2004 BIG EAST Championships … Silver and bronze medalist at the 2003 FIRA State Championships … Bronze medalist with the Second Varsity 8 at the 2003 Lexus Central/South Region Sprints … Silver medalist with the Varsity 8 at the 2002 FIRA State Championships … Bronze medalist at the 2002 SIRA Championships.

Gillian Hatch, Virginia, Soccer

Four-year defensive starter for the Cavaliers … Played every minute of the 2003 and 2004 seasons … Anchored the Cavalier defense that set school records in shutouts (14) and fewest goals allowed (13) in 2004 … Selected as an NSCAA Scholar All-American in 2003 and 2004 and a CoSIDA Academic All-American in 2004.

Michael Hatch, Duke, Cross Country and Track & Field

Four-year member of Duke’s cross country and track programs … Finished his career as a six-time All-Region honoree … Led the Blue Devil cross country team to four top five finishes in 2004 … Holds the school record in the indoor 5,000-meter run and currently holds the fifth fastest time in the indoor 3,000-meter run.

Ashley Hoagland, Wake Forest, Golf

Competed in three straight U.S. Women’s Amateurs … Recorded the lowest yearly stroke average (72.4) in Wake Forest women’s golf history and stands in first place in career stroke average (75.0) … Had the Deacons’ lowest average score (75.11) in 2003-04 … All of her rounds (9 of 9) counted toward team scoring in 2003-04 … Named All-ACC in 2004 … Tied for eighth at 2003 ACC Championship … Tied for ninth at the 2002 ACC Championship.

Eric Hoverstad, NC State, Track & Field

NC State’s top pole vaulter the past four years … Finished eighth in the pole vault at the 2004 ACC Outdoor Championship … Top outdoor mark came at the 2004 NCAA Regionals where he cleared 16’05.25″ for 12th place … Finished fifth at the 2004 Indoor ACC Championship … Finished ninth at the 2003 ACC Outdoor Championship … Placed 16th at the 2003 NCAA Regionals … Placed 11th at the 2003 ACC Indoor Championship … Finished fifth at the 2002 ACC Outdoor Championship … ACC Honor Roll member.

Stephanie Istvan, Duke, Volleyball

Duke’s all-time leader in digs with 629 and 5.99 per game … First-Team All-ACC and ACC All-Tournament Team selection at the libero position … Prior to moving to the libero position, she served as the primary setter for the Blue Devils, tallying 1,447 assists in three seasons, including 906 during her sophomore year … Four-year member of the ACC Academic Honor Roll and three-time recipient of the team’s academic award.

Leslie Jimison, NC State, Track & Field

Finished 14th at the 2004 Outdoor ACC Championship in the 3,000 meter steeplechase with a time of 11:15.12 … Placed 19th at the 2004 Indoor ACC Championship in the mile with a time of 5:11.65 after finishing 18th in both 2003 and 2002 … Competed for the cross country team and finished 10th at the 2004 Raleigh Invitational, 11th at the 2004 N.C. Collegiate Championship and 12th at the 2002 Great American Championship … ACC Honor Roll member.

Franchele Klaus, Clemson, Swimming

Set the top Clemson time of the season in the 100 backstroke in an opening split at the Nike Cup … Owns a career-best mark of 2:07.82 in the 200 backstroke … Set a season best time in the 200 butterfly at the Nike Cup … Posted season-best times in the preliminary rounds of the 200 individual medley and the 200 butterfly at the Nike Cup … Named to Clemson’s President’s List … Member of the ACC Honor Roll.

Megan Knepper, Maryland, Swimming

School record-holder in 100 and 200 backstroke and 200 and 400 medley relays and 400 freestyle relay … Earned nine All-ACC medals … Competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2004 … Three-time honorable mention All-American … Selected team co-captain two straight years … ACC Swimmer of the Week selection on February 7, 2004 … Member of the Maryland Student Athletic Advisory Committee for three years.

Justin Maxwell, Maryland, Baseball

Named a Preseason All-American and an Arthur Ashe, Jr. Scholar by Black Issues in Higher Education (2003) … Led the team in 2003 with a .317 average, 37 runs, 43 RBIs, 10 home runs and 11 stolen bases … Missed all of 2004 with a fractured right ulna … ACC Honor Roll honoree.

Casey McCluskey, Duke, Soccer

Finished second on the Duke career list for all-time points, goals scored and shots … Four-time first team All-ACC selection, becoming only the 15th ACC player to be selected four times … Named second team Soccer Buzz All-America, ACC Offensive Player of the Year, second team District III CoSIDA Academic All-America and NSCA and Soccer Buzz first team All-Region in 2004 … Her 40 points in 2004 tied the Duke single season record … 2003 & 2002 ACC All-Tournament team selection … 2003 Soccer Buzz Southeast Region first team … 2001 ACC Rookie of the Year.

Mihaela Moldovan, Florida State, Tennis

2004 CoSIDA Academic All-American … Became the first FSU women’s tennis player to finish the dual match spring season with a perfect 26-0 singles record, playing out of the No. 2 flight … Member of the 2004 All-ACC team … Owns most singles wins in a season in Florida State history (26) and is one of nine Florida State women’s tennis players to record 20 wins in a dual match season … ITA Scholar-Athlete … 2003 ITA South Region Rookie of the Year.

Jessica Morris, Virginia Tech, Cross Country and Track & Field

Garnered 2004 All-BIG EAST honors in the 3,000 meter steeplechase and 4×800 meter relay … Named BIG EAST Academic All-Star in 2002 and 2004 … Holds outdoor school records in the 4×800 meter relay and 4×1,500 meter relay and the indoor record in the 4×800 meter relay … Finished in the top three for Virginia Tech in every cross country race of 2002.

Gisele Oliveira, Clemson, Track & Field

Clemson’s all-time leader in the indoor and outdoor triple jump … Ranks second on the Lady Tigers’ career list in the long jump … In 2004, she earned her third consecutive and fourth overall All-America merit … Three All-America triple jump certificates, as well as one in the long jump … Holds the ACC outdoor all-time and meet records in the triple jump, and is a five-time ACC champion … Member of the 2004 CoSIDA Academic All-America women’s cross country and track and field team.

Bryan Randall, Virginia Tech, Football

2004 ACC Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year … 2004 first-team All-ACC selection … Won the Dudley Award, given to the top collegiate player in the state of Virginia … Started at quarterback in 38 consecutive games for the Hokies … Virginia Tech’s all-time leader in career total offense with 8,034 yards and all-time leader in passing yards with 6,508 … Broke the school record for career touchdown passes on his final attempt as a Hokie, finishing with 48 … Rushed for 1,526 career yards, the second-highest career total for a Virginia Tech quarterback.

Jezali Ratliff, Florida State, Soccer

Four-year starter … Only the second player in school history to record 10 or more points in all four of her seasons as a Seminole … Ranks third in game-winning goals in team history, fourth in assists, game-winning assists and shots on goal and fifth in career points and goals scored … Holds the career record at Florida State for points and assists in NCAA Tournament play … Two-time member of the ACC Academic Honor Roll … Member of Florida State’s Student-Athlete Advisory Council.

Katayoon Shahbrokh, Maryland, Volleyball

Played in 42 games and 18 matches in 2004 and helped lead the Terrapins to their second consecutive ACC Championship … Owns a career high of 10 digs … 2003 second-team CoSIDA Academic All-District selection … Recipient of the Maryland and ACC community service awards as well as the academic achievement award for the highest GPA … Four-time Maryland Athletics Honor Roll selection … Member of Maryland Honors Program.

Zeb Sion, Georgia Tech, Track & Field

Georgia Tech’s top performer in the shot put the last four years … 2004 ACC champion in the outdoor shot put … Four-time All-ACC honoree in the shot put … Set new school record in the indoor shot put with a throw of 58′-7.50″ … Owns the school record in the outdoor shot put at 59′-5.0″ … Three-time ACC Academic Honor Roll recipient … Georgia Tech Dean’s List (six semesters) as well as Faculty Honors last spring … Recipient of Mills B. Lane/Bank of America Scholarship.

Anderson Smith, NC State, Track & Field

Finished 17th in the 3,000 meter steeplechase at the 2004 U.S. Track & Field Olympic Trials … Earned All-America honors in the steeplechase for the second straight year with runner-up finish at the 2004 NCAA Outdoor Championship … Won the Steeplechase at the 2004 NCAA Regionals … Won second straight ACC Championship in the steeplechase in 2004 … 2003 ACC Cross Country Champion … Earned All-America honors in cross country for 2000 season … Four-time All-ACC selection in cross country … 2000 ACC Cross Country Rookie of the Year … ACC Honor Roll member.

Nicholas Thompson, Georgia Tech, Golf

Three-time All-American … Third-team All-America by the Golf Coaches Association of America in 2004 and an honorable mention All-American in 2003 and 2002 … Two-time All-ACC selection … Stands fifth in career stroke average in Georgia Tech history (72.04) … Has won two events this year, including the Jones Cup Invitational … Has 13 career top-10 finishes … Runner-up at the 2002 ACC Championship; finished third at the 2004 ACC Championship … Low collegiate round of 64 … 2004 CoSIDA Academic All-District III At-Large selection … 2003-04 All-America Scholar by GCAA … Three-time ACC Academic Honor Roll selection.

Jessica Trainor, Virginia, Soccer

Four-year defensive starter who missed only one start during her four year career … Member of the Cavalier defense that set school records in shutouts (14) and fewest goals allowed (13) in 2004 … Twice named a CoSIDA Academic All-District honoree.

Olivia Trusty, North Carolina, Gymnastics

Ranks among the top 10 all-time performers at North Carolina in every event … School record-holder on uneven bars (9.95) … Runner-up on floor exercise at 2004 NCAA Southeast Regional … Competed on vault, uneven bars and floor exercise at 2003 NCAA Regional Championship, placing in the top ten in each event … Named First Team on vault, floor exercise and in the all-around in 2004 … Named EAGL All-Academic Team every year during her college career … Named Academic All-American by National Association of College Gymnastics Coaches for the past two years.

Catherine Wright, North Carolina, Volleyball

Led the Tar Heels in blocks and hitting percentage in 2004 … Served as team captain … Second on the team in blocks and hitting percentage as a junior … Received the John C. Lotz Memorial Award for outstanding community service … Named to the ACC Honor Roll for three-straight years … Second on the team in hitting percentage as a sophomore.


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