June 27, 2014
NEW YORK - Three BIG EAST student-athletes were named to the Capital One Academic All-America team as announced by the College Sports Information Directors of American (CoSIDA) Thursday.
Butler placed a pair on the first team, including graduate student Katie Clark and junior Mara Olson. Georgetown junior Andrea Keklak was a second-team selection.
The two Bulldog runners helped Butler to unprecedented levels of success in cross country and track in 2013-14. Olson earned All-America recognition and Clark narrowly missed the honor while leading Butler's cross country squad to a third place finish at the NCAA Division I National Championship, the highest finish in school history. Olson went on to earn All-America honors at both the NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
Clark, a graduate student with a perfect 4.00 grade point average in school counseling, was named to the Academic All-America Team for the second consecutive year. She was chosen to the third team of the national honor squad in 2012-13, and she's the first Butler female athlete to earn Academic All-America recognition twice. The standout distance runner from Hull, England, received cross country All-America honors with a 22nd place finish at the 2012 NCAA Cross Country Championship, and she earned honorable mention All-America recognition at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship. She's the Butler school record-holder in both the 5,000 and 10,000 meter runs in outdoor track.
Last fall, Clark finished in the top 10 at the BIG EAST Cross Country Championship and barely missed All-America recognition by 0.9 seconds, placing 41st at the NCAA Championship.
Olson, a junior from Minneapolis, Minn., became the first female athlete in Butler history to compete in NCAA Championship meets in cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field in the same academic year. She earned All-America recognition at all three stops, placing 26th to capture first-team honors in cross country and then gaining second-team status with a 10th place finish in the 3,000 meters indoors and a 12th-place finish in the 5,000 meters outdoors.
Butler's indoor record holder in both the 3,000 and 5,000 meter runs, Olson boasts a perfect 4.00 grade point average as a biology major. She received the NCAA Elite 89 Award as the competitor with the highest GPA at the 2014 indoor track and field championship.
Keklak had a breakout indoor season that put her on the national stage as one of the best 800-meter runners in the country. The sociology major continued that success through the outdoor season as she qualified for the 800-meter semifinals at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. She finished fourth overall in the indoor 800m at indoor nationals, earning first-team All-America honors and achieved honorable mention status for her efforts during the outdoor season. Keklak, a native of Sudbury, Mass., owns a 3.77 GPA.
Keklak is the first Hoya to earn a national academic honor since Renee Tomlin's third-team accolades in 2011. Meanwhile, Butler is one of only two schools with more than one first-team selection this year, joining Cornell.