OUE Hoopsters Excel In The Classroom

Pictured, from left to right, are OUE academic and basketball starts Jessica Hunkler, Alexus Davis, Sarah Neavin, Kelsey Holloway, and Monroe Central grad Casey Digity.The Ohio University Eastern Lady Panthers are on their way to another great season.  The two-time defending Ohio Regional State Tournament Champions sport a fine 15-5 overall record and are in contention for a fourth regular season conference title in the last five years.

However, according to Head Coach E. J. Schodzinski, the most impressive statistic is the one that the team earned in the classroom.  For the record, the Lady Panthers achieved an average overall grade point average of 3.12 as a team for the fall semester that just ended.  “This is a remarkable accomplishment,” said Schodzinski.  “Our student-athletes compete in the classroom the exact same way that they do on the court and I could not be prouder of them.  They truly are students first and fine representatives of Ohio University and the Eastern Campus."

Union Local’s Alexus Davis and Monroe Central’s Casey Digity led the way and were named to the Dean’s List for their efforts.  To be named to the Dean’s List, a student must earn a minimum 3.5 grade point average on a 4.0 scale and take 16 hours or more during that semester.

In addition, Barnesville’s Jessica Hunkler and the Shadyside duo of Kelsey Holloway and Sarah Neavin, joined Davis and Digity on the ORCC All-Academic Team.  To be named to the ORCC All-Academic Team, a student must earn a 3.0 and take at least 12 hours during that semester.

According to Schodzinski, the academic accomplishments of the Lady Panthers are even more noteworthy when considering that the vast majority of the players on the team also work part-time to help pay for their schooling. “Most of our student-athletes work 15-20 hours per week,” said Schodzinski.  “In addition, every single player is a full time student and spends an average of 16 hours per week in the classroom."

Freshman Digity said of her focus on academics,  "I play basketball because I love it, but I also realize that I won't be making a living at it.  Education is my top priority and completing my degree in applied management is the number one goal."

In today's sports world filled with scandals and controversy, it is refreshing to know that the OUE Lady Panthers, a team stocked with local OVAC talent, has it all figured out.  They should be commended for their efforts in the classroom.