Cross Country/Track & Field Athletes Garner Academic All-America Honors

CoSIDA Academic All-America Logo

AUSTIN, Texas – Six NESCAC student-athletes have been selected to the 2018-19 Google Cloud Academic All-America Division III Track & Field/Cross Country Teams.

GOOGLE CLOUD DIVISION III CROSS COUNTRY/TRACK & FIELD ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICANS 

Selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), the award recognizes the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances on the field and in the classroom. To be nominated, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve on his team with at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) at their current institution.

Junior Clark Ricciardelli (Hingham, Mass.) of Amherst was named to the First Team and earns Academic All-America honors for the second consecutive year after picking up Second Team honors in 2017-18. Ricciardelli, a mathematics major with a 4.00 GPA, specialized in the 8K for the cross country team and in the 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter races as a member of track & field. A four-time All-American across both sports, Ricciardelli added two All-America laurels to his resume this season, securing the distinction in cross country for the second consecutive fall after finishing 25th overall at the NCAA Championships with a time of 24:53.2 and earning an All-America nod at the 2019 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships with a second place finish in the 5,000-meter run (14:28.54). Additionally, Ricciardelli was a 2018 USTFCCCA All-Academic selection, a 2018 All-NESCAC Cross Country First Team selection (6th of 154), the 2019 NESCAC Outdoor Track & Field Champion in the 10,000-meter run, and a 2019 All-NESCAC Track & Field selection. He finished fourth overall at the New England Cross Country Regionals to help Amherst capture the team title and earn an automatic bid to NCAA Cross Country Championships.

Middlebury’s Jonathan Perlman (Bala Cynwyd, Pa.), Nathan Hill (Hinsdale, Ill.) and Minhaj Rahman (Woodhaven, N.Y.) were also named to Academic All-American teams. Perlman and Hill both garnered second-team laurels, while Rahman was a third-team selection. The trio guided the Panthers to the program's second-consecutive NESCAC Outdoor Track & Field Championship and all three competed at the NCAA Track & Field Championships during both the indoor and outdoor seasons.

Perlman graduated with a 3.90 GPA and a degree in mathematics. During the indoor season, he ran the anchor leg on the 2019 NCAA Champion distance medley relay quartet. Perlman was third at the New England Outdoor Championships in 1,500-meters. On the cross country courses, Perlman was an All-NESCAC selection via his ninth-place finish and was 10th overall at the NCAA Regional Cross Country Championships. He was second in 1,500-meters at 2019 NESCAC Outdoor Championships and narrowly missed All-American accolades, finishing in ninth place by 0.002 seconds.

Hill possesses a 3.88 GPA going into his senior year as an economics and psychology double major. He ran the opening leg of the 2019 NCAA Champion distance medley relay team at the indoor national meet in early March. Hill won the 800-meters at the New England Championships and finished as runner-up in that same event at the NESCAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships and placed third in the 1,500-meters. He became a two-time NCAA Outdoor All-American in the 800-meters, crossing the line in fifth place after finishing third in 2018. Hill also ran the third leg of the eighth-place 4x400-meter All-American relay quartet.

Rahman graduated with a 3.72 GPA with a degree in neuroscience. He capped off his career with an All-American seventh-place finish in the hammer throw with a toss of 193'0". Earlier in the season, Rahman posted a school-record mark of 195'11" during the Division III New England Championships. He also posted an impressive winter season by winning the weight throw eight times and posted an eighth-place All-American toss of 62'7.25" at the NCAA Indoor Championships. He entered the meet with a school-record mark of 63'6", a distance he surpassed four times last winter.      

Seniors Katie Barker (Burlington, Vt.) of Bates and Natalie Bettez (Bolton, Mass.) of Tufts were selected to the Google Cloud Academic All-America Women’s Track & Field/Cross Country Teams.

Barker graduated magna cum laude from Bates with a 3.90 GPA and a degree in chemistry. Barker, who was named to the Academic All-America Third Team, became the sixth All-American in Bates women's cross country history in November. She led the Bobcats in every race, including the NCAA Cross Country Championships, where the team finished 17th in the country. Barker also competed in the 3,000-meter run at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships, finishing in ninth place. In outdoor track and field, Barker ranked fifth in New England in the 5,000-meters, based on her career-best time of 17:23.94 run at Open New England meet, her final collegiate race.

Bettez, who garnered Academic All-America Second Team honors, graduated from Tufts with a 3.97 GPA and earned a dual degree in biochemistry and Spanish. Inducted into the Tufts chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, she was a nine-time NESCAC All-Academic Team member. A captain of the cross country team, she will attend Tufts University School of Medicine beginning July 2019.

Bettez was the first Tufts runner in 37 years to win the all-divisions New England Intercollegiate Amateur Athletic Association Championship Women's Cross Country race in October. She was also the runner-up in NESCAC Cross Country Championship this past fall and earned All-NESCAC honors for the third time in her career. As a track & field athlete, she placed fifth at the 2019 conference meet in the 10,000-meters.

About the CoSIDA Academic All-America® Program

CoSIDA began the distinguished Google Cloud Academic All-America® program in 1952, and since then, has honored thousands of deserving student-athletes from numerous sports across all divisions with these elite Academic All-America® scholar-athlete honors.

Currently, CoSIDA sponsors Academic All-America® programs for men's soccer, women's soccer, football, volleyball, men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball, softball and men's and women's track and field/cross country. Many other sports are eligible through the At-Large program.

For more information regarding the Google Cloud Academic All-America® program, visit academicallamerica.com.