June 22, 2012
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
Adding to the University of Louisville athletic department's remarkable year in 2011-12, the BIG EAST Conference has announced Friday that seven Cardinals were the recipients of BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards, which recognizes academic and athletic achievement as well as community service.
The Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards are given to one student-athlete in each BIG EAST-sponsored sport based on academic credentials, athletic accolades or performances and volunteer service to the community. Student-athletes who have attained junior academic standing and a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 are eligible. The winners are chosen by the BIG EAST Faculty Athletics Representative Council.
Louisville's honorees consist of Brendon Andrews (men's swimming and diving), Austin Berry (men's soccer), Tori Collins (softball), Chinwe Okoro (outdoor track and field), Katie Oliverio (women's lacrosse), Peyton Siva (men's basketball) and Hayley Turner (field hockey).
Andrews, who had a stellar season in 2012, won six individual BIG EAST titles in 2012. A West Palm Beach, Fla., native, he graduated with a 3.31 in physical education. For his career, he finished as a 20-time all-BIG EAST performer with nine All-America distinctions.
Berry graduated with a master's in justice administration with a 3.00 grade-point average and obtained his bachelor's in communications with a 3.30 GPA. The Cincinnati native, who was taken by the Chicago Fire with the ninth overall pick in the 2012 MLS Super Draft, finished his career with five All-America distinctions. In 2010, he was tabbed BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year and was instrumental in the men's soccer team's national runner-up finish in 2010.
A Lafayette, Ind., native, Collins graduated with a 3.53 grade-point average in elementary education. One of the program's all-time best pitchers, Collins was tabbed a third team All-American in 2012 and was named a first team all-conference selection. She finished her career with 590 strikeouts, becoming the fourth player in school history to accomplish the feat. Earlier this year in April, she pitched no-hitters on back-to-back days.
Okoro, a three-time USTFCCCA All-Academic Team recipient, graduated with a 3.38 in biology. She helped guide the women's team to its fifth-straight outdoor conference title this year, a conference women's team record. Additionally, she won her first individual league crown by capturing the shot put title. She graduated as a three-time outdoor All-American, including first-team honors this year in the shot put.
Oliverio is pursuing her master's in justice administration and owns a 3.65 GPA. She graduated with a 3.60 mark in sport administration. The Silver Spring, Md., native garnered all-West/Midwest Region accolades and all-BIG EAST honors in 2011. As a sophomore, she was named the NCAA Division I Statistical champion in assists per game.
A rising senior, Siva compiled a 3.41 cumulative grade-point average and was named to the 2011-12 Capital One Academic All-District 2 men's basketball first team. Siva had a remarkable postseason, helping Louisville capture the BIG EAST Tournament title and navigating the Cardinals to the Final Four. He was named the Most Outstanding Player of the conference tournament and also earned West Region All-Tournament Team accolades.
Turner, a North Sydney, Australia, native, was named to the Capital One Academic All-District II At-Large Team after registering a 3.98 grade-point average in her master's coursework. Currently, she is pursuing a master's degree in education and community health after graduating Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor's in public health. Athletically, she was tabbed the 2011 BIG EAST co-Offensive Player of the Year was named a second team NFHCA All-American.