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Six Flames Named VaSID Academic All-State
The Liberty honorees were part of a group of 213 collegiate student-athletes recognized for their performances both in the classroom and in competition. To be eligible, student-athletes were required to have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.20 or higher. The student must have achieved sophomore status, and he or she could not have been in the first season of competition at their current school. All honorees are either starters or key reserves for their respective teams.
Frazee (Sr., Xenia, Ohio) is a part of the VaSID Academic All-State roster for the second consecutive year, after graduating with a 3.92 GPA in kinesiology. She has earned both athletic and academic recognition on the national level as a senior, after leading the Liberty women's basketball team to its 12th Big South title in the last 13 years. Frazee was named an honorable mention Associated Press All-American and a first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American. Most recently, she became the first student-athlete in conference history to sweep the Big South Women's Student-Athlete of the Year and Big South Women's Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors.
Gelatt (Sr., Indianapolis, Ind.), who completed his bachelor's degree in kinesiology with a 3.76 GPA, is also a repeat member of the VaSID Academic All-State team. As a senior, Gelatt started all 18 games at defender, helping the Liberty men's soccer squad go 10-5-3. He earned his second straight selection to the first-team All-Big South unit and also garnered numerous academic accolades. Gelatt became the first Liberty student-athlete ever voted a first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American in back-to-back seasons. He also won the Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year award for men's soccer and made the NSCAA/adidas University Men's Scholar All-East Region first team.
Greiser (Sr., Sellersville, Pa.) excelled in both the Flames' defensive backfield and the classroom during his final year at Liberty, finishing his kinesiology curriculum with a 3.36 GPA. Greiser, who played a key role in the Flames' 10-2 Big South championship season, was a second-team All-Big South defensive back for the third year in a row. He also earned a spot on the second-team VaSID All-State team. Greiser was one of four Liberty football players voted to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District team this past season.
Newell (R-Sr., Roanoke, Va.) completed his bachelor's degree in English with a 3.65 grade-point average and currently owns a 3.50 GPA as he works toward a master's degree in the same subject. He was tabbed a third-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American and the Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year for men's indoor track & field during his final year of collegiate competition. On the track, Newell swept the Big South and IC4A decathlon championships for the second straight season. He then finished his career by competing in the decathlon at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships for the first time.
Ricksecker (Sr., Laurel, Del.), an elementary education major carrying a 3.97 GPA, was named to the first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District unit for women's track & field/cross country. She was also voted the Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year and was included on the USTFCCCA All-Academic Team during the 2008 women's cross country season. Ricksecker finished as the Big South cross country runner-up and placed 11th at the NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Cross Country Championships, earning a place on the all-region team.
Smith (Suffolk, Va.) graduated with a 3.66 GPA in business and owns a 3.86 graduate GPA as he studies business leadership. He is now a two-time member of the VaSID Academic All-State roster, after making the team in 2007. Smith was a second-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District at-large honoree and a NWCA All-Academic team member as a senior. During his final year on the mats for the Flames, Smith finished 25-16 and made his fourth NCAA national appearance. Smith, who won a match at the NCAA National Wrestling Championship for the first time, made the VaSID All-State team as a second-team selection.
2009 Virginia Sports Information Directors Academic All-State Team – Liberty Members
Name, Sport, Year, Position/Event, Hometown, Major, GPA
Megan Frazee, women's basketball, senior, guard/forward, Xenia, Ohio, kinesiology, 3.92
Mike Gelatt, men's soccer, senior, defender, Indianapolis, Ind., kinesiology, 3.76
Ryan Greiser, football, senior, defensive back, Sellersville, Pa., kinesiology, 3.36
Daniel Newell, men's track & field, senior, decathlon, Roanoke, Va., English (UG)/English (G), 3.65/3.50
Rebekah Ricksecker, women's track & field/cross country, senior, mid-distance, Laurel, Del., elementary education, 3.97
Christian Smith, wrestling, senior, 133 pounds, Suffolk, Va., business (UG)/business leadership (G), 3.66/3.86