ATLANTA (July 23, 2019) – The 2018-19 Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Academic Top 25 Team Honor Rolls have been announced and Saint Joseph's College ranked 21st in all of NCAA DIII Women's Basketball (437 programs) last season with a 3.568 cumulative team GPA.
With four Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) All-Academic honorees – Julia Quinn (Fryeburg, Maine), Julia Champagne (Brunswick, Maine), Hannah Marks (Waldoboro, Maine), and Kelsi McNamara (West Newbury, Mass.) - leading the efforts in the classroom, Saint Joseph's is the only GNAC institution to garner the high academic honor. Only five NCAA DIII New England programs – Emerson, Springfield, Middlebury, Saint Joseph's, and MIT – made the top 25 list this year.
Overall, eight of the top 25 academic teams earned a berth into the 2019 NCAA DIII Women's Basketball Tournament. For Saint Joseph's, the 2019 Top 25 honor is the third in the last seven years. The Monks also claimed the high academic honor in 2013 and 2015.
The WBCA Academic Top 25 Team Honor Rolls annually recognize the outstanding academic performance of NCAA Division I, II, and III; NAIA; and junior/community college women's basketball teams across the country that carry the highest combined grade point average (on a 4.0 scale), inclusive of all student-athletes on their rosters for the entire season. Teams are nominated for the honor by a WBCA-member head coach. The 2018-19 season is the 24th in which the WBCA has compiled the honor rolls.
Under the watch of 26th-year Head Coach Mike McDevitt '83 this season, Saint Joseph's went 28-2 overall – including a 12-0 mark in conference play – en route to earning the top seed in the GNAC Tournament for the fourth-consecutive year. The Monks cruised past Johnson & Wales and Suffolk in the first two rounds of the tourney before suffering a 65-64 upset at the hands of Emmanuel in the GNAC Championship on February 23rd.
Ranked in the top 10 nationally in the WBCA and D3Hoops.com polls and fourth in the NCAA DIII Regional rankings, Saint Joseph's earned the program's first-ever at-large berth into the NCAA Tournament. The Monks faced MIT in the opening round of the national tourney and defeated the Engineers, 68-61, before falling to pod-host Ithaca College, 74-63, the following day.
The loss signaled the end of collegiate basketball for the Monks' four seniors: Emily Benway (Rochester, N.H.), Julia Champagne (Brunswick, Maine), McNamara, and Hannah Marks(Waldoboro, Maine). With the 2019 class on the court, St. Joe's posted a 103-15 (.873) overall record – the most victories by a senior class in program history - with a 53-2 (.964) mark in conference play, three GNAC Championships, and four NCAA Tournament appearances.
Western Illinois University, Tiffin University, Shenandoah University, Indiana Institute of Technology and Snow College sit atop their respective divisions in the 2018-19 WBCA Academic Top 25 Team Honor Rolls announced today by the Women's Basketball Coaches Association.
Western Illinois, coached by JD Gravina, finished first among NCAA Division I members with a 3.767 cumulative team grade-point average. Tiffin, coached by Jessie Ivey, led NCAA Division II members with a 3.809 GPA. Shenandoah, coached by Melissa Smeltzer-Kraft, took top honors in NCAA Division III with a 3.764 GPA. Indiana Tech, coached by Jessie Biggs, was No. 1 in the NAIA division with a 3.817 GPA. And Snow, coached by Mike Russell, led all two-year college members with a 3.712 GPA.
The WBCA Academic Top 25 recognizes NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA and two-year GPAs inclusive of all student-athletes on their rosters for the entire season. "The WBCA is pleased to recognize those women's basketball programs that have committed themselves to excellence on the court and in the classroom," said WBCA Executive Director Danielle Donehew. "The 117 teams we honor this year strive to achieve all-around success and we commend their efforts. Congratulations!"
|NCAA Division III WBCA Academic Top 25 Team Honor Roll|
|1||Shenandoah University***||Melissa Smeltzer-Kraft||3.764|
|2||Vassar College***||Candice Signor-Brown||3.763|
|3||Marymount University||Ashlee Rogers||3.703|
|4||Ithaca College***||Dan Raymond||3.679|
|5||Thiel College||Rob Clune||3.660|
|T6||Emerson College||William Gould||3.659|
|T6||Bethel University||Jon Herbrechtsmeyer||3.659|
|8||Nebraska Wesleyan University||Sam Dixon||3.656|
|9||Yeshiva University||Michael Alon||3.655|
|10||Misericordia University||Jason Rhine||3.650|
|11||Springfield College||Naomi Graves||3.623|
|12||Sarah Lawrence College||Bradley Alexander||3.607|
|13||St. Lawrence University||Dan Roiger||3.592|
|14||Adrian College||Kathy Morris||3.591|
|15||Principia College||Dory Smith||3.590|
|16||Elmira College||Devin Shea||3.584|
|17||Penn State Harrisburg||Ross Patrick||3.583|
|18||Middlebury College***||KJ Krasco||3.580|
|19||Washington and Lee University||Christine Clancy||3.579|
|20||Johns Hopkins University***||Katherine Bixby||3.574|
|21||Saint Joseph's College-Maine***||Mike McDevitt||3.568|
|22||Marywood University||Gabby Holko||3.566|
|24||Hope College***||Brian Morehouse||3.546|
|25||Manchester University||Josh Dzurick||3.538|
***Appeared in 2019 NCAA DIII Tournament
A team's GPA is calculated by dividing the total number of quality points (A=4, B=3, C=2, D=1, F=0) earned by the total number of academic hours attempted by all team members in the academic terms (semesters or quarters) that the season spans. Weighted grades are converted to a 4.0 scale. The GPAs are rounded to the nearest thousandth of a point. Teams are nominated for the honor by the WBCA member head coach. A team must have a 3.000 or better GPA to be nominated.
About the Women's Basketball Coaches Association
Founded in 1981, the Women's Basketball Coaches Association is the professional association for coaches of women's and girls' basketball at all levels of competition. The WBCA offers educational resources that coaches need to help make themselves better leaders, teachers and mentors to their players; provides opportunities for coaches to connect with peers in the profession; serves as the unifying voice of a diverse community of coaches to those organizations that control the game; and celebrates those coaches, players and other individuals who excel each year and contribute to the advancement of the sport. Visit www.WBCA.org for more details about the Association.