MOUNT PLEASANT - Three Central Michigan soccer student-athletes earned the first Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors in program history Friday, the College of Sports Information Directors Association announced.
Senior defender Bethany Allport (Lima, N.Y./Lima HS) was named to the second team, while juniors Stefanie Turner (Livonia, Mich./Livonia Churchill HS) and Bailey Brandon (Livonia, Mich./Livonia Churchill HS) were each named to the third team.
Central Michigan's three Academic All-America selections made up the largest contingent of student-athletes from a single Division I school."I'm really happy for our players for having earned these awards," head soccer coach Neil Stafford said. "Our players work so hard on and off the field and it's a testament to our student-athletes that they continue to do so well academically."
Allport (3.97/Finance) appeared in 16 games, starting 14, for the Chippewas' defense before being sidelined with a season-ending injury. The senior tallied a single assist and helped the Maroon and Gold post 10 shutouts. Allport also earned Academic All-MAC honors in 2009.
"To see someone like Bethany Allport earn this award after having such a fantastic senior year is great," Stafford said. "It was good to see her playing her best soccer prior to her injury and I'm proud she was able to finish her career so well academically."
Brandon (3.93/Law and Economics) started every game on a defense that ranked fifth in the country in goals-against average in 2011 and set a MAC record by allowing just seven goals in the regular season. She is a two-time academic all-district selection and was named the MAC Scholar-Athlete of the Week on Oct. 14.
Turner (3.96/Biology/Biomedical Sciences) ranks 10th in the country in goals-against average after allowing just 0.541 goals per game during her junior season. She posted an 11-2-2 record in 2011 while recording four shutouts and ranks fifth all time in CMU history with 15 career wins.
"It's very cool for them [Brandon and Turner] because they are best friends, grew up together and have a very good relationship on and off the field," Stafford said. "For them, just like Beth, they are overachievers and perfectionists and bring the same mentality from the field to the classroom, which makes us a better program."
The trio becomes the third in Central Michigan history to be named Academic All-Americans in the same season. The Chippewas' 1974 football squad featured two first-team selections and a second-team selection, while the 1987 women's basketball team featured one first-team and two third-team selections.