School Record: 81 Lions Earn D2ADA Academic Achievement Award

CLEVELAND, Ohio – A total of 81 student-athletes representing Texas A&M University-Commerce have been awarded the Division 2 Athletics Directors Association’s Academic Achievement Award for their efforts in the 2020-21 academic year.

A&M-Commerce’s 81 honorees are the most for the Lions since the award was created in 2008, beating the previous school record of 59 set in 2019-20. Lion scholar-athletes have increased their record total in each of the last six academic years.

“During a most unique and challenging year, this is a true ‘institutional victory’ for A&M-Commerce and our talented student-athletes,” A&M-Commerce Director of Athletics Tim McMurray said. “We celebrate this noteworthy achievement with our deans, faculty, and support staff that provides the wraparound services for student success. President Rudin prioritizes that mindset for our campus, so what a Best in Class way to start 2021-22!”

In total, there were a record breaking 16,164 student-athletes from 187 institutions recognized for the 2020-21 Academic Achievement Awards. This is the most student-athletes being recognized since the inception of the award’s program.

“It is incredible to think that our athletes excelled in the classroom despite having to deal with the many stressors associated with COVID-19. To see once again that a record-breaking number of students are recipients of the D2 ADA Academic Achievement Award is simply astonishing,” said Dr. Bren Stevens, Vice President for Athletics at the University of Charleston and current D2 ADA President. “I am extraordinarily impressed by the efforts of our member institutions to ensure that they provide special recognitions for their respective athletes, as they are certainly deserving.”

In order for a student-athlete to receive an Academic Achievement Award, the athletics director of the Division II institution must be a current dues-paying member of the D2 ADA.

Also, the student-athlete must:

  • have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale
  • have attended a minimum of two years (four semesters) of college level work
  • have been an active member of an intercollegiate team during his/her last academic year

Texas A&M University-Commerce student-athletes who earned the award are:

Atiana AlexanderWomen’s Track & FieldSr.
Essence AllenVolleyballJr.
Phoebe AlvarezVolleyballJr.
Ryan AmadorMen’s Track & FieldSr.
Sydney AndersenVolleyballGrad
Lauren BanningSoccerJr.
Devin BeamonFootballSr.
Michelle BeckerWomen’s GolfJr.
Kara BlasingameSoccerSr.
Avery BoleySoftballSr.
Evelyn BrownWomen’s Track & FieldSr.
Rodney BrownMen’s BasketballGrad
Lexi BubenchikWomen’s GolfSr.
Leslie CampuzanoSoccerSr.
Taryn CastVolleyballSr.
Chelsea CheekWomen’s Track & FieldGrad
Matthew ChildersFootballGrad
Joe CruzMen’s Track & FieldJr.
Riley DavidsonVolleyballSr.
Jewelz-Unique DempsFootballJr.
Maiya DickieVolleyballSr.
Dominion EzinwaFootballGrad
Clifford FunderburkFootballJr.
Paige-Lee GarrisWomen’s GolfSr.
Abigail GatlinSoftballSr.
Zachary GilmoreFootballJr.
Katie GivensSoccerSr.
Nicki GonelliVolleyballGrad
Tyler GuilloryMen’s Track & FieldGrad
Noah HarrisFootballSr.
Kinsie HeblerSoftballSr.
Sophie-Charlott HempelWomen’s GolfSr.
Symmone JamesWomen’s BasketballJr.
Bryson JenkinsFootballSr.
Nathan JesterFootballJr.
Sean-Krystoff KingFootballJr.
Leo LaraMen’s BasketballGrad
Kayla LucasVolleyballSo.
Tyler MalinFootballSo.
Yenifer MartinezWomen’s Track & FieldSr.
Tyler McDonoughMen’s GolfGrad
Mitchell McGarryFootballJr.
Cooper MillerMen’s Track & FieldSr.
Hunter MillerFootballSr.
Dallas MillinMen’s GolfSr.
Uxua Modrego LopezSoftballJr.
Ta’Lyn MoodySoftballGrad
Chance MulliganMen’s GolfJr.
Tehillah NdhlovuSoccerJr.
Karlee NicholsWomen’s GolfJr.
Danielle NicholsonWomen’s Track & FieldJr.
Keekee NowlinWomen’s BasketballSr.
Tyson OliverFootballJr.
Emily OttoSoftballSr.
Axel PaolucciMen’s Track & FieldGrad
Cally PausewangSoftballGrad
Jessie PayneWomen’s Track & FieldSr.
Alex PeavyMen’s BasketballSr.
Jen PetersSoccerJr.
Kimber QuallsSoftballSr.
Maddy RashfordVolleyballJr.
Rylie RobertsonSoccerSr.
Mason RussMen’s Track & FieldSr.
Madison SchaeferSoftballSr.
Lauren ShawSoccerJr.
Alex ShillowFootballGrad
Naomi SinkSoccerSo.
Destiny SkidmoreWomen’s Track & FieldJr.
Chealsea SliderSoftballGrad
Agang TacWomen’s BasketballSr.
Imani TaylorWomen’s Track & FieldSr.
Sarah TiptonWomen’s Track & FieldJr.
Tanner TownsendMen’s Track & FieldJr.
Carson TuttleMen’s BasketballSr.
Iniuto UkpongWomen’s Track & FieldGrad
Celeste VelaVolleyballSr.
Tripp WallaceMen’s GolfSr.
Hailey WanoreckWomen’s Track & FieldGrad
Cora WelchSoccerSr.
Devlen WoodsFootballJr.
Madison ZickSoccerSr.