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April 15, 2005

Columbia, S.C. – Four Gamecock student-athletes were recognized Thursday at the annual University of South Carolina Awards Day ceremony, which honors the University’s most outstanding undergraduates in academic achievements, leadership and service. Named as the Academic Excellence Award recipients were cross country’s Jenny Lake and men’s basketball’s John Chappell. The Female and Male Student Athlete of the Year Awards went to track and field’s Shevon Stoddart and baseball’s Aaron Rawl.

The Academic Excellence Award is presented to the female and male student athlete who has achieved the highest cumulative grade point average during their career at Carolina and has been a letterwinner for their team.

Lake is a 2005 team captain and maintains a 4.0 cumulative GPA in Mathematics. The Geneseo, Ill. native is a CoSIDA Academic All-American and broke the school record in the 3,000-meters event with a time of 9:41.77. Lake was the lead runner for USC and finished her cross country career as the top runner on the team at every meet for four years in a row.

Chappell, a senior center, was awarded this honor as he graduated in three and a half years with three degrees: International business, Marketing, and Finance. A member of the 2005 NIT Championship team, Chappell is a CoSIDA All-District All-American and a four-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection.

The Female and Male Student-Athlete Award is given to the athlete who has performed extraordinarily in the areas of athletics, academics and community service during their college career.

The Female Student-Athlete of the Year is track and field’s Stoddart, a 2004 Olympian who competed for her home country Jamaica. A 2005 team captain, Stoddart is an eight-time All-American and a 2005 NCAA national champion. Majoring in advertising, Stoddart is very active in several community service projects.

USC pitcher Rawl is the Male Student-Athlete of the Year. The Lexington, S.C. native has led the Gamecocks to three consecutive appearances in the College World Series and was named third team All-America by National Collegiate Baseball Writer’s Association. A 2005 team captain, Rawl earned USC’s Most Outstanding Pitcher award after compiling a 13-4 record and he is currently tied for fifth on USC’s All-Time Wins list with a 32-11 career record. He is also a member of the 2004 SEC Academic Honor Roll and was a Dean’s List student in the 2003-04 season.

The event recognized more than 250 students and was held in the ballroom of the Russell House.