Nov. 19, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - For the second consecutive year, Notre Dame women's soccer senior co-captain Lauren Fowlkes (Lee's Summit, Mo./St. Teresa's Academy) has been named to the 2010 ESPN Academic All-America Women's Soccer Team, it was announced Friday. Fowlkes earned first-team accolades this year (after garnering second-team status in 2009), becoming the ninth different Fighting Irish women's soccer player to be voted a first-team Academic All-American, with those nine combining for a total of 13 selections, including eight in the past eight seasons.
The Notre Dame women's soccer program also has fielded a total of 13 different Academic All-Americans (first through third teams), with those 13 earning a total of 25 selections. The Fighting Irish also lead the nation with 16 women's soccer Academic All-Americans since that sport branched off from the at-large Academic All-America program in 2002.
"Lauren truly personifies what it means to be a student-athlete," Notre Dame head coach Randy Waldrum said. "She has been tremendously successful at balancing her academics and athletics, reaching an elite level in both areas. What's more, she has proven to be an excellent leader for our program, showing our younger players what it means to carry yourself in a first-class manner as a student and an athlete. We couldn't be prouder of her and what she has meant our program and the University of Notre Dame."
Fowlkes continues an unmatched tradition of successful student-athletes in the Fighting Irish women's soccer program. At least one Notre Dame women's soccer player has been chosen as an Academic All-American in 14 of the past 16 seasons (all but '99 and '02), and the program easily could have laid claim to honorees in the other two years. Jenny Streiffer somehow was passed over in her 1999 All-America season, despite previously being an Academic All-American in '97 and '98, while an injury to Vanessa Pruzinsky prevented her from earning her third straight Academic All-America honor in '02 (which instead came in '03).
Notre Dame ranks second all-time with 217 Academic All-Americans since the program's inception in 1952. What's more, 91 Fighting Irish student-athletes have earned the Academic All-America distinction during the past 11-plus years (2000-present), tops among any school in the country.
A member of the Hermann Trophy watch list, a second-team selection to the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Year and a second-team all-BIG EAST choice, Fowlkes has started all 21 matches for Notre Dame this season, playing at all three field positions while helping the Fighting Irish to a 17-2-2 record, a berth in the NCAA Championship round-of-16 for the seventh consecutive season, and their sixth consecutive BIG EAST National Division title (and 13th regular season conference crown in 16 years as a league member).
Last weekend, Fowlkes was sensational in Notre Dame's opening two matches at the NCAA Championship, factoring into five of the seven Fighting Irish goals as Notre Dame rolled past New Mexico (3-0) and 22nd-ranked USC (4-0) at Alumni Stadium. Fowlkes scored twice in the win over UNM, then added a goal and two assists in the second-round victory over the Trojans. She also scored the game-winning goal in a 3-1 victory at Providence on Oct. 17, a win that clinched the division championship, and she has dished out a pair of assists in two matches this season, making her one of two Fighting Irish players with multiple assists in a single match this season. Fowlkes currently is among 10 finalists for the 2010 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, with the award's recipient set to be announced at Dec. 3-5 at the NCAA Women's College Cup in Cary, N.C.
A second-team Academic All-America selection and third-team National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-America choice last season, Fowlkes is bidding to become just the 13th Notre Dame student-athlete (and third Fighting Irish women's soccer player) to combine academic and athletic All-America honors in the same year on two different occasions (this year's athletic All-America honors will be announced within the next month). She currently is enrolled in Notre Dame's College of Science, where she has compiled a 3.657 cumulative GPA as a science-business major, was named to the dean's list in the fall of 2007 (3.804 semester GPA) and is a three-time BIG EAST All-Academic Team selection.
Voting for the ESPN Academic All-America Team was conducted by members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-America Committee. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director. Since the program's inception in 1952, CoSIDA has bestowed Academic All-America honors on more than 14,000 student-athletes in Divisions I, II, III and NAIA, covering all NCAA championship sports.
For more information about the Academic All-America Teams program, please visit the official CoSIDA web site at cosida.com, and for more on Notre Dame's Academic All-America success, please visit the UND.com Academic All-Americans Page.
Fowlkes and the No. 7/10 Notre Dame women's soccer team are in Chapel Hill, N.C., as they prepare to face No. 3/4 North Carolina at 5 p.m. (ET) Saturday in the third round of the NCAA Championship at Fetzer Field. Live stats and a live in-match blog from that match will be available through the official Notre Dame athletics web site, www.UND.com.
In addition to following all the latest Fighting Irish women's soccer information through UND.com, fans also can follow the program through its official Twitter news feed (www.twitter.com/NDsoccernews) or by signing up for the Irish ALERT text messaging system through the sidebar on the women's soccer page at UND.com.