UCF Rowers Earn National Academic Award

May 22, 2006

ORLANDO - The Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) announced its National Scholar-Athletes for the 2006 season on Monday and six UCF rowers were recognized. The Golden Knights' six selections were the most in the nation from a single school.

UCF seniors Heather Brooks and Laura Brad, junior Krystina Sarff and sophomores Laura Bacci, Caitlin Pauls and Erin Riegel were all honored for their academic accolades. The CRCA award recognizes student-athletes with a 3.5 cumulative grade-point-average or higher that competed in at least 75 percent of her team's 2006 spring races. Freshmen are not eligible for the award.

"I am extremely proud of the accomplishments of these student-athletes," said UCF head coach Leeanne Crain. "They achieved great things on the water this year and also in the classroom. I am fortunate to be coaching such a stellar group of individuals."

A total of 135 student-athletes from 50 different schools were praised for their efforts during the 2006 season. UCF was the lone program in the nation to have six honorees. Clemson, Delaware, Rhode Island, Villanova and Yale each produced five scholar-athletes.

Brooks, the cox for UCF's varsity four boat, is a physical education major. A health sciences major, Brad is a member of the fifth-ranked lightweight varsity eight boat. Sarff, who was also honored by the CRCA a year ago, rows on the Golden Knights' varsity eight boat. She is an English education major.

Bacci, an accounting major, and Riegel (film production) are members of the lightweight varsity eight boat. Brooks (physical education) and Pauls (health sciences) row for the varsity four and varsity eight boats, respectively.

Since 2004, 11 Golden Knights have earned the academic accolade.