Fall 2015

Individually and together, Pioneers student-athletes dominate in 2014–15

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Swimmer Samantha Corea spent her college career rewriting the Pioneer record books. The senior English major left DU with eight school records, more than any swimmer in school history.

The past year was a big one for University of Denver athletics. In addition to capturing its first-ever NCAA men’s lacrosse championship, Denver once again claimed the Learfield Sports DI-AAA Directors’ Cup, finishing ahead of all non-football schools. It was the seventh time in eight years that DU has brought home the trophy. In the overall standings — including football schools — Denver finished 49th, marking the second straight year in which the Pioneers have finished in the Top 50.

The University of Denver also was highly ranked in the Capital One Cup, an NCAA award that honors the top men’s and women’s college athletics program in the country. Thanks to the men’s lacrosse victory, as well as Top 10 finishes in skiing and ice hockey, the University of Denver men came in at No. 5 in the Capital One rankings — 14 points higher than last year, when the men ranked No. 19 in the final standings.

“It’s been a very productive and rewarding year for DU athletics, and these awards are definitely a great way to cap things off,” says Peg Bradley-Doppes, vice chancellor for athletics, recreation and Ritchie Center operations. “While we take great pride in being among the nation’s best athletic departments, the exceptionally high caliber of the young men and women who represent the Pioneers with tremendous aplomb, both in competition and in the classroom, is our greatest accomplishment.”

Individual Pioneers shone in 2014–15 as well, chief among them freshman skier Monica Hubner, who was named National Women’s Alpine Skier of the Year by the United States Collegiate Ski Coaches Association.

Hubner, who came to DU from Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, dazzled in her freshman season for the Pioneers, culminating with a dramatic victory in the women’s slalom at the NCAA Championships in Lake Placid, N.Y., in March.

Another standout was swimmer Samantha Corea (BA ’15), who spent her college career rewriting the Pioneer record books. The senior English major left DU with eight school records, more than any swimmer in school history. She finished off her impressive collegiate resumé by breaking three DU records, medaling twice at the 2015 NCAA Championships, being named to the Summit League All-Academic team for the second consecutive year, and being one of only 60 college athletes nationwide to be awarded a $7,500 NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship — recognition for her academic success, which includes an impressive 3.71 grade point average.

“For Samantha to be included in this group of student-athletes is a special accomplishment,” says head swimming coach Brian Schrader. “It really embodies the message and mission we are charged with at DU — to succeed with great students who are also great athletes.”

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