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Charlottesville, VA – Virginia senior wrestler Peter Ferrara (Doylestown, Pa.) has been named one of 10 male finalists for the 2009 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award. Established in 1992 by the publication Diverse: Issues In Higher Education, the Sports Scholars Awards honor undergraduate students of color who exemplify the standards set by tennis great Arthur Ashe Jr. 

One of the 10 male and female finalists will be named the award’s overall winner on May 28.

Wrestling at 149 pounds, Ferrara compiled a 17-10 record this year, including a 7-5 mark in dual matches. He was second on the team with seven major decision victories. During his career his overall record stands at 50-32. Ferrara is majoring in sports medicine with a minor in Spanish.

Last week Ferrara was named the athletics department’s Gus Tebell Memorial Award winner as the senior male student-athlete with the highest grade point average through his four years at Virginia. He is also one of Virginia’s ACC Top VI Award recipients for the current academic year. He serves on UVa’s Student-Athlete Mentoring Program and is an Academic All-ACC honoree. He attended the 2007 Student-Athlete Leadership Development Conference and will enroll in medical school this fall.

A scholar and athlete, Ashe sought to expand opportunities for young people. In addition to their athletic ability, students named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars must exhibit academic excellence as well as community activism. To be included, students have to compete in an intercollegiate sport; maintain a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.2 and be active on their campuses or in their communities. This year approximately 600 male and female student-athletes from across the country were nominated. 

Last year’s male and female winners were Hampton University’s Marcus Dixon and University of Illinois at Urbana-Campaign’s Momei Qu. 

Male Finalists

Kenneth Avila – Baseball – Northwestern University

Sam Bradford – Football – University of Oklahoma

Peter Ferrara – Wrestling – University of Virginia

Rickie Fowler – Golf – Oklahoma State University

Damion James – Basketball – University of Texas at Austin

Jamaal Parker – Track & Field – University of Georgia

Rashad James – Tennis – University of Maryland Eastern Shore

Brian Robiskie – Football – Ohio State University

Masumi Turnbull – Soccer – University of Kentucky

Eric Wang – Swimming – New York University

Female Finalists

Shardea Croes – Softball – Slippery Rock University 

Lamarra Currie – Track & Field – University of North Carolina – Charlotte

Diane Gu – Swimming – Rice University

Mariko Strickland – Soccer – California State University Long Beach

Azahara Munoz – Golf – Arizona State University

Marcia Newby – Gymnastics – University of Georgia

Yolanda Odenyo – Soccer – Oklahoma State University

Ashley Paris – Basketball – University of Oklahoma

Angela Porshe – Volleyball – Valparaiso University

Destiny Williams – Tennis – North Carolina A&T State University

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