KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Western Illinois women’s soccer was honored by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) on Thursday (Nov. 21) for the team’s academic success. The Leathernecks ended the 2012-13 academic year with a cumulative team GPA of 3.70, second only behind Felician College (3.78).
"I think it's a world class accomplishment," said head coach Ted Flogaites. "I think it represents an unparalleled dedication to getting things done in the classroom, which is where it matters of great significance. I think it shows the players' time and effort go in the right direction."
Western Illinois’ GPA was the highest in NCAA Division I during that span. The Leathernecks also boast higher GPAs than any men’s team in the nation.
Western Illinois was one of 862 teams from men’s and women’s collegiate soccer to record a grade point average above a 3.0. The Leathernecks were one of 593 women’s teams to be recognized.
"This is a team that's very self-motivated, but I think we continually address and readdress the message of the importance of academics and we never deviate from that," Flogaites said. "We tell our players a lot of the time that 'if you want to be an excellent player, you have to be an excellent student.' They can't take a 'C' because a 'C' represents being average. We've embodied that philosophy and they're clearly getting the work done in the classroom."
The honor was the first time since 2006 the Leathernecks were recognized by the NSCAA for academic success.
"I'm really happy and proud of the team," Flogaites added. "If you watch this team in the road or in study hall you can tell it's important to them and there's a reason the GPA is what it is."
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