June 29, 2017
Charlottesville, Va. – Six student-athletes from Virginia were named to the 2016-17 Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) Academic All-State team Thursday (June 29). Those Cavaliers were among the 217 student-athletes from 37 colleges and universities across the state were recognized.
The UVA students named to the Academic All-State team were Micah Brickhill from women’s track & field, Micah Kiser from football, Thai-Son Kwiatkowski from men’s tennis, Georgia Ratcliff from rowing, Leah Smith from swimming and diving and Jimmy Stanger from men’s golf. Brickhill, a senior from Buckingham, Va., had a 3.99 GPA as a biology/religion (minor) major. She recorded two personal-best performances during the 2016-17 season, earning the personal-best efforts in the outdoor 800 meters (2:09.94) and indoor 1,000 meters (2:58.44). Brickhill was named to the 2017 CoSIDA Academic All-District 3 Track and Field/Cross Country team and was the UVA Jettie Hill Memorial Award winner, an honor given to the Virginia female student-athlete with the highest scholastic average throughout her four years. Brickhill served the vice president of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee. She was accepted to the UVA School of Medicine. She was an ACC top Six for Service Award honoree and graduated with distinction. Kiser, a senior from Baltimore, had a 3.42 GPA in foreign affairs. He was a second-team Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) All-American and a second-team CoSIDA Academic All-American in 2016 after finishing No. 4 in the nation and No. 1 in the ACC with 11.2 tackles per game. His 134 tackles, which led all “Power 5” players in 2016, tied Kiser with Wali Rainer for fourth-most single-season tackles in program history. Kiser was a semifinalist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy and the Butkus Award. Kiser, who led the ACC in tackles in 2015 and 2016, has twice earned first-team All-ACC accolades each of those seasons. Since the ACC started an All-ACC Academic team in 1954, there have been 29 Cavaliers to earn first-team All-ACC honors and All-ACC Academic recognition in the same season. Kiser has accomplished that feat twice (2015 and 2016).
Kwiatkowski, a senior from Charlotte, N.C. with a 3.63 GPA in commerce, closed out his collegiate career by winning the NCAA Singles Championship in May. A three-time All-American in singles, he was named the ITA Atlantic Region Senior Player of the Year and ACC Men’s Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2017. Kwiatkowski garnered All-ACC First Team honors, won the American Collegiate Invitational and was named to both the ITA National Indoor and NCAA All-Tournament Teams
Ratcliff, a senior from Falls Church, Va., with a 3.43 GPA in economics and foreign affairs, was the ACC Rowing Scholar-Athlete of the Year. She is a two-time All-American and four-time All-ACC Academic team honoree. In 2017, Ratcliff led the Cavaliers to their eighth consecutive ACC championship and 11th-place finish at the NCAA Championships. Ratcliff rowed in UVA’s Varsity Eight, helping the boat to a first-place finish at the ACC Championships and 10th-place finish at NCAA Championships.
Smith, a senior from Pittsburgh, Pa., with a 3.30 GPA as a media studies/history (minor) major, made history as the second person to ever break 4:30 in the women’s 500-yard freestyle, recording a time of 4:28.90 at the NCAA Championships. Smith finished the season as a five-time All-American, concluding her career with 16 All-America honors. She was the NCAA runner-up in the 500-yard freestyle and the 1650-yard freestyle in addition to finishing fifth in the 200-yard freestyle. During the ACC Championships, Smith was a four-time All-ACC honoree. She was the ACC champion in the 500-yard freestyle, 1650-yard freestyle, and the 800-yard freestyle relay. Smith is a two-time Olympic medalist, earning gold with the 4x200m freestyle relay team and bronze in the 400m freestyle. She also finished sixth in the 800m freestyle at the Olympics.
Stanger, a senior from Tampa, Fla., had a 3.61 GPA as a commerce major. He led UVA to a program-best 10th-place finish at the NCAA Championships were he placed 11th in the individual competition. He won the ACC individual title and was the first PING first-team All-American in program history. He played for the U.S. team at the 2017 Palmer Cup, the 2017 British Amateur Championship and received an exemption to play in the PGA Tour’s Valspar Championship. He was the ACC Men’s Golf Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
To be eligible a student-athlete must have at least a 3.25 cumulative grade point average, and be a sophomore or higher.
VaSID is comprised of sports information or athletics communications professionals from intercollegiate institutions throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Membership is open to any individual affiliated with one of the state’s institutions at the NCAA Division I, Division II, Division III, NAIA, USCAA, NJCAA, community college and independent levels, provided that individual’s area of responsibility lies within the realm of sports information.