CHANDLER, Ariz. – The NFHCA handed out its annual academic honors Wednesday and named 13 University of Delaware field hockey student-athletes to its National Academic Squad for their work in the classroom.

The 2016 ZAG Field Hockey/NFHCA Division I National Academic Squad recognizes individuals who have achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher during the first semester of the 2016-17 academic year, which is arguably the busiest time of the year for the student-athletes as they are amidst their championship season.

“A great team semester GPA can only be accomplished by a great team of individual student-athletes working together,” stated Delaware head coach Rolf van de Kerkhof.  “What is impressive to me is that during the 2015 season, we had our then-highest team fall semester GPA (3.35), won our third consecutive CAA title and played really well in the NCAA Tournament.  This past fall, we were able to surpass what we knew was a great 2015 with a new team-high GPA (3.44) while winning our fourth straight CAA title and becoming National Champions.  This players group never stops to impress and surprise people in a good way!”

Delaware was represented by freshmen Sarah Horgan (Centreville, Va./Westfield), Ally Pollak (Crofton, Md./Arundel) and Kaitlyn Zook (New Holland, Pa./Garden Spot), sophomores Kiki Bink (Wageningen, The Netherlands/RSG Pantarijn), MaryCate Butler (Collegeville, Pa./Villa Maria), Lisa Giezeman (Leidschendam, The Netherlands/Sin-Maartenscollege) and Michaela Scanlon (Wynnewood, Pa./Merion Mercy), junior Emmeline Oltmans (Baarn, The Netherlands/Het Baarnsch Lyceum) and seniors Kayla Devlin (Annapolis, Md./Annapolis), Esmée Peet (Zeewolde, The Netherlands/RSG Slingerbos), Marjelle Scheffers (Amersfoort, The Netherlands/Stedelijk Gymnasium Johan van Oldenbarneveld), Meghan Winesett (Centreville, Va./Westfield) and Maura Zarkoski (Eagleville, Pa./Villa Maria).

Since 2004 and prior to 2013, the Blue Hens never had more than seven student-athletes honored with NFHCA Academic Squad accolades.  In 2013, Delaware had a dozen student-athletes recognized while the Hens have had 13 acknowledged in the past two seasons.

“A special congrats and thank you to Kiki, MaryCate, Kayla, Lisa, Sarah, Emmeline, Esmée, Ally, Michaela, Maryellen, Meghan, Maura and Kaitlyn for representing our team,” Van de Kerkhof exclaimed.  “It is great for them and our institution to have 13 Blue Hens securing their affiliation as a member of the 2016 ZAG Field Hockey/NFHCA Division I National Academic Squad.”

Last week, the NFHCA recognized Delaware for the sixth straight season under Van de Kerkhof and his staff as a National Academic Team.

The Blue Hens, who finished the year with a 19-game winning streak and an overall mark of 23-2, won the program’s first-ever National Championship in late November while achieving the team’s highest-ever semester GPA of 3.437.

MEDIA CONTACT: Maggie Hayon, Assistant Sports Information Director | | O: 302-831-6389 | C: 302-379-9182