NEW ORLEANS, LA – The Johns Hopkins women’s cross country team was named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division III Scholar Team of the Year for the 2016 cross country season. The Blue Jays captured the team honor for the fourth time in five years.
The national champion Blue Jays led 216 All-Academic women’s teams. The distinction is won by being the highest-finishing team at the NCAA Championship meet to hold at least a 3.1 team cumulative GPA.
Hopkins posted a 3.28 cumulative GPA, and four Blue Jays earned All-Academic individual honors. Ellie Clawson, Natalia LaSpada, Tess Meehan and Caroline Smith were all honored by the USTFCCCA for their performances on the grass and in the classroom. Student-athletes must have a cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher and finish in the top 25 percent at NCAA Regionals.
Clawson holds a 3.50 GPA as a neuroscience major. The sophomore finished fourth for the Blue Jays and 57th overall at nationals with a time of 21:41.2. LaSpada earned All-American honors in her sophomore season, finishing 31st with a time of 21:15.1. LaSpada boasts a 3.75 cumulative GPA as a public health and psychology major.
Meehan led Johns Hopkins at the NCAA Championship meet with a career best time of 21:10.0, finishing 25th to become the first three-time All-American in program history. The senior holds a 3.31 GPA in international studies with a minor in GECS. Smith has a 3.50 GPA as a behavioral biology/pre-med major. Smith was the fifth finisher for Hopkins at Nationals, finishing 62nd with a time of 21:42.6.