Lady Cards Add Academic Success to Season
Feb. 12, 2010
While the Lamar University women's basketball team has been enjoying a very prosperous season on the court, 18-5 overall and a league-leading 8-1 ledger to date in the Southland Conference, the Lady Cardinals have been excelling in the classroom as well with emphasis on the fall 2009 semester.
Heading that list are seniors Ashley Crawford, Brittney Williams and Jasmine Stewart. Crawford, already a graduate in spring 2009, is pursuing her master's degree in kinesiology and checked in with a perfect 4.0 GPA in the fall semester. Crawford has excelled at the shooting guard position this season and is one of the Red & White's top defenders. Williams, the third all -time leading scorer in the history of Lamar women's basketball, registered a 3.75 GPA in pursuit of her communications degree and will graduate ON TIME in the spring of 2010. Williams also was credited with making the Dean's List. Stewart, on a medical hardship scholarship due to chronic knee problems, has not let her focus drop in the pursuit of her kinesiology degree and posted a 3.6 GPA while also being added to the Dean's List. Stewart will also graduate in spring 2010 ON TIME. "Crawford, Williams, and Stewart have represented Lamar University in a FIRST CLASS manner both on and off the court," head coach Larry Tidwell stressed.
Next, the junior class had Myriam Igoufe post a 3.2 GPA in political science, and the import from France has aspirations of becoming a lawyer in the near future. "Myriam has gone through a lot over the past two years with recurring ACL knee surgeries," Tidwell said, " but has kept her eyes on the prize in pursuing her degree and you have to appreciate her efforts in the classroom."
The sophomore class continues to be represented well by Kalis Loyd and Ang Green. Loyd was credited with a 3.25 GPA as she has her mind set on a Business degree at Lamar. "Loyd has had an unbelievable season on the hardwood for the Lady Cardinals," Tidwell said, "but she knows the importance of an education and carries that same passion into the academic arena." Green, one of the most talented players ever to wear the Red & White and a native of Silsbee, Texas, countered with a 3.0 GPA in communications, and Tidwell emphasized "that I have never been more proud of a student-athlete than Green during the fall semester as she endured the loss of her father in November and still maintained her focus on her grades while taking some very difficult classes and playing some determined basketball."
On the freshmen front, Krista Phillips and Danielle Heithoff both were named to the Dean's List. Phillips, a walk-on from Cross Plains, Texas, posted an impressive 3.6 GPA. Heithoff, a native of Minnesota via Bullard, Texas, came through with a 3.5 GPA. Phillips is red-shirting during her initial season, while Heithoff has been a mainstay on the court for the Lady Cardinals as the 6-foot-1 power forward continues to improve. "Phillips and Heithoff bring it every day," added Tidwell, "and you have to appreciate that!"
Also, the Lady Cardinal team management staff was led by junior Lacy Hill, as the student assistant produced a perfect 4.0 GPA in education and was also named to the President's List. "Lacy was a great find for our program as she came highly recommended by her high school coaches," stated Tidwell, "and she will make a great teacher/coach upon completion of her degree."
Overall, the Lady Cardinals manufactured a 2.85 GPA and fell just short of a team goal of a 3.0 GPA. "We have to shore up a few areas in our academic arena," added Tidwell, " and we plan to do so. But, I really appreciate the effort of our players as we have continued to get better in the classroom. Every student / athlete faces a very long and tiring process in the academic & athletic arena on each and every day, plus add the extended travel and dealing with injury and illness and you have a hard task in maintaining excellence. Being a Division 1 student- athlete is not an easy job and it is not for everybody."
"Likewise," stressed Tidwell "we are very appreciative of the support we get from the Lamar administration on maintaining academic excellence. It starts with Dr. (James) Simmons (university president) and it filters down through Athletisc Director Billy Tubbs with special help from academic supervisors Helene Thill, Rose Hubbard and Rob McDermand. Also, assistant coach Heather Morris has been instrumental in this success with the supervision of study hall and class checks while Associate Athletics Director Jason Henderson keeps close tabs on all eligibility issues."
"Academic Success at Lamar University has been a priority from Day One and it entails maintaining a respectable GPA, graduating ON TIME, and being ready to go into society when that graduation day comes and be successful," added Tidwell, "and a major factor in the pursuant of that success has been the addition of summer school for the Lady Cardinals.