Bobcats set new school record with spring semester GPA

BANNER ELK, N.C. --- The Lees-McRae College athletic department continued to show that hard work breeds success this spring, surpassing the single-semester school record it set this past fall with a grade point average of 3.143 as a department, announced Director of Athletics Craig McPhail Thursday.

“We continue to build on the foundation of student-athlete within our athletic department,” expressed McPhail. “The work of so many has us rejoicing in this accolade. I am proud of the efforts of our young people as they manage the daily rigors of being a student-athlete.”

Fourteen of the Bobcats’ 20 intercollegiate athletic programs posted a combined team GPA of 3.0 or higher during the spring 2013 semester, including seven teams with a GPA over 3.2. Overall, 147 student-athletes (includes multiple sport participants) registered a grade point average over 3.2 for the spring 2013 semester; 179 (includes multiple sport participants) posted a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Women’s cross country paced the department with a team GPA of 3.635, while women’s cycling also eclipsed the 3.6 plateau with a mark of 3.605. Women’s lacrosse followed with a GPA of 3.493, narrowly edging women’s track and field’s mark of 3.492.

Women’s volleyball posted a GPA of 3.464, as women’s soccer combined for a mark of 3.425, including 18 student-athletes with a 3.0 or higher. Men’s soccer followed with a GPA of 3.285, while men’s cycling recorded a 3.167 GPA for the semester, with 26 student-athletes breaking 3.0 and 25 eclipsing the 3.2 mark.

Women’s tennis combined for a GPA of 3.148 during the semester, followed closely by the men’s team with a mark of 3.085. Women’s basketball, men’s cross country, softball, men’s volleyball, and men’s basketball each posted a GPA over 2.8 for the semester.

The Bobcats can attribute much of their success this year to the CATS (Challenging Athletes to Succeed) program, which partners with the Burton Center for Student Success to provide student-athletes with services that assist in balancing achieving academic success with athletic responsibilities.

The primary objectives of the CATS program are to prepare student-athletes to achieve academic progress towards their degree, provide student-athletes with academic success services and tools to reach their goals academically, and provide career and life development resources that will prepare student-athletes for their lives outside of college and athletics.

Lees-McRae’s coaching staff and the department as a whole bought into what the CATS program can do in 2012-2013, totaling more than 7,000 study hall hours during the academic year as part of their commitment to success, both on the court and in the classroom.

“Our staff and their ability to monitor and maintain this high level of achievement in the classroom fortifies my belief that we have the right folks in the right place,” praised McPhail.

- LMC -