Two Tide Women Receive Honors

Two University of Alabama student-athletes, gymnast Kassi Price and diver Elizabeth Hughes, were named to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American Women's At-Large Team it was announced Thursday.

Price was named to the first team and Hughes earned third-team honors. It was Price's third time to be named to the at-large team and Hughes' first after earning All-District honors a year ago.

The Academic All-American At-Large program includes a first, second and third team, each made up of 15 NCAA Division I student-athletes drawn from 13 women's sports including bowling, rowing, fencing, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, rifle, skiing, swimming and diving, tennis and water polo.

Price is one of just three student-athletes on this year's list to repeat as a member of the first team. She is also the first Alabama gymnast to earn Academic All-American honors three times during her career after earning third-team honors in 2008. Alabama gymnasts have totaled 13 Academic All-American honors since 1986.

"To earn a place on the Academic All-American At-Large team once is quite an accomplishment, but to do so three years in a row is nothing short of phenomenal," UA head gymnastics coach Sarah Patterson said. "I am extremely proud of all that Kassi has accomplished during her Crimson Tide career and the positive recognition she continues to bring to the University."

A three-year All-American and a member of Alabama's 2009 SEC Championship team, Price carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average with a double major in advertising and marketing. An NCAA and SEC Postgraduate Scholarship winner, she won the inaugural NCAA Elite 88 Award as a senior. The 2010 Bryant Award winner, Price also earned the 2010 Austin Cup, awarded to the top senior in UA's Culverhouse School of Commerce and Business Administration. The vice president of UA's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Price was also named to the SEC Gymnastics Community Service Team this season.

Hughes is the seventh member of UA swimming and diving program to earn Academic All-American honors and the sixth since Eric McIlquham became head coach in 2004.

"What a great way for Elizabeth to cap off a tremendous career," McIlquham said. "She enjoyed an awesome career both academically and athletically and has certainly added her name to Alabama's championship legacy in both areas."

The 2009 Southeastern Conference Platform Champion, Hughes posted a 4.0 grade point average at Alabama majoring in psychology with a sociology minor. A two-time CSCAA Honorable Mention Scholar All-American, Hughes is also a four-year member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll. A four-year SEC finalist, the Maryville, Tenn., native earned the 2010 Coaches Award and the 2009 Debra Hobart Perseverance, Determination and Spirit Award.

Since 2000, Alabama student-athletes have earned Academic All-American honors 54 times, including 24 first-team honors. Hughes and Price push Alabama's 2009-10 season total to six, including football players Colin Peek and Barrett Jones, softball player Charlotte Morgan and tennis player Saketh Myneni. In addition to Price, Peek and Morgan were both named first team while Jones was named to the second team. Myneni joined Hughes on the third team.

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