IWLCA Releases 2022 Scholar-Athletes of the Year
The IWLCA announced its 2022 Scholar-Athletes of the Year, honoring the top student-athlete in NCAA Division I, II, and III and the NAIA. Nominees for the award must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of athletic eligibility, have at least a 3.5 cumulative GPA, and be a starter or significant reserve for their team.
Elli Kluegel, Loyola University Maryland
The 2022 IWLCA Division I Scholar-Athlete of the Year is Elli Kluegel, currently a graduate student pursuing a master’s degree in Emerging Media at Loyola University Maryland after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Biology and a minor in Innovation & Entrepreneurship. While maintaining a 4.0 GPA throughout the season, Kluegel played a pivotal role as a captain on the Greyhound Women’s Lacrosse Team. She helped Loyola to its fourth straight NCAA tournament appearance and aided in the Greyhound’s third straight Patriot League Title. Kluegel concluded her playing career ranked 11th at Loyola with 159 goals scored. In 2021, Kluegal was named the Patriot League Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year for women’s lacrosse as well as for all sports. She is a four-time CoSIDA Academic All-District Second Team honoree and a two-time Patriot League Scholar-Athlete of the Year for women’s lacrosse. She is a three-time Patriot League All-Academic Team honoree and is a Presidential Scholarship recipient. Kluegal has been a part of several organizations off the field, including Alpha Sigma Nu Jesuit, Phi Beta Kappa, and Chi Alpha Sigma honor societies. Along with being a SAAC representative, Kluegal is a member of the Loyola Leadership Academy and is a BioNavigator Ambassador.
Photo by Larry French, courtesy of Loyola University Maryland Athletic Communications.
Taylor Rossi, Pace University
The 2022 IWLCA Division II Scholar-Athlete of the Year is Taylor Rossi, currently a graduate student pursuing a master’s degree in Special Education at Pace University. Prior to her graduate studies, Rossie graduated with a 4.0 and obtained a bachelor’s degree in Childhood Education. This season, Rossi received the Northeast-10 Elite 24 Award which is awarded to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA participating in NE10 championship. Not only has she made great strides in the classroom this season, Rossi also played a key role in the Setters defense, registering 22 ground balls and 21 caused turnovers through 18 appearances and 16 starts. She was also listed as a Strength and Conditioning All-American (NSCA).
Photo courtesy of Pace University Athletic Communications.
Madelyn Seibel, Gettysburg College
The 2022 IWLCA Division III Scholar-Athlete of the Year is Madelyn Seibel, who graduated Summa Cum Laude from Gettysburg College this spring, majoring in Physics with minors in mathematics and business. As a member of the second-ranked team in the nation this season, Seibel and the Bullets became Centennial Conference Champions and went on the make an NCAA Division III Semifinal appearance. Outside of her accomplishments on the field, Seibel has earned All-Conference Academic Honor Roll three times at Gettysburg and is a member of Chi Alpha Sigma National College Athlete Honor Society. She has earned the Dr. George Miller-Dr. Richard Mara Senior Prize in Physics and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa (Physics Department Honors at Gettysburg). She is also a member of Chi Omega. Seibel plans to attend Northwestern Graduate School for Engineering in the fall of 2022.
Photo by David Sinclair, courtesy of Gettysburg College Athletic Communications.
Bella Ricchiazzi, University of the Cumberlands
The 2022 IWLCA NAIA Scholar-Athlete of the Year is senior Bella Ricchiazzi from the University of the Cumberlands. She obtained her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Special Education. Ricchiazzi is a three-time NAIA All-American in lacrosse and an NAIA All-American Honorable Mention in women’s wrestling. She has led the Patriots to three Mid-South Conference regular-season championships, an MSC tournament title, and three appearances in the NAIA National Tournament. Ricchiazzi is a two-time NAIA All-Tournament team select and has been team captain for the past two years. She was named the 2022 NAIA Player of the Year, the MSC Player of the Year, and earned First Team All-Conference this season. Ricchiazzi closed out the season ranked second in goals, assists, and points in the NAIA while becoming the Patriot’s career leader in assists (158) and second in goals (264). Aside from her achievements on the field, Ricchiazzi has achieved several academic accolades. She is a three-time Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athlete and Academic All-Conference honoree. She is a CoSIDA First Team At-Large All-American (2021, 2022) and CoSIDA At-Large All-District Team honoree (2021, 2022).
Photo courtesy of Univ. of the Cumberlands Athletic Communications.