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NAU Graduates 44 Student-Athletes During Spring Commencement Ceremonies

Spring 2017 Student-Athlete Graduates
Spring 2017 Student-Athlete Graduates


FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Among the nearly 5,000 Northern Arizona University graduates this weekend will be 44 Lumberjack student-athletes, who will receive their diplomas during the commencement ceremonies Friday and Saturday in the Walkup Skydome. Along with the 17 fall semester graduates, NAU Athletics will graduate 61 total student-athletes this academic year.

A graduation reception was held Thursday evening at the Health & Learning Center on the NAU campus. Each of the 'Jacks in attendance received their student-athlete stoles.

The Spring 2017 graduates have combined for a total of 24 conference championships and more than 2,000 hours of community service over their athletic careers. Members of the class have played in the NCAA Soccer and Volleyball Tournaments, participated in the NCAA Track & Field Championships and the CIT Tournament and even helped bring home NAU's first ever NCAA Championship among many other accomplishments.

The 2016-17 academic year was highlighted by the men's cross country's National Title – the first in NAU school history and the first non-football national championship in the history of the big Sky Conference. With the Big Sky Outdoor Track & Field Championships in progress this weekend, NAU has already captured seven conference championships this year for the third consecutive year.

Big Sky championships have been claimed in men's and women's cross country, men's and women's indoor track & field and men's and women's tennis. The swimming & diving team clinched their fourth straight Western Athletic Conference championship as well. As a result, the Lumberjacks currently lead both the Big Sky men's and women's All-Sport Trophy standings.

Three graduating student-athletes (Devon McPeek, football; Nicole Sherwin, soccer; Aeryana Earl, track & field) were Gold Axe recipients this academic year. Patrick Baldenegro (football) and Rene Coggins (women's basketball) were named the Golden Eagle Scholar-Athletes of the Year and both received CoSIDA Academic All-District honors. Coggins would go on to become the ninth student-athlete in school history to be a multiple CoSIDA Academic All-American.

Spring 2017 NAU Student-Athlete Graduates:

Ako Kaluna – Men's Basketball – Hotel & Restaurant Management

Jaleni Neely – Men's Basketball – University Studies

Chelena Betoney – Women's Basketball – Civil Engineering

Taylor Leyva – Women's Basketball – Psychological Sciences

Brittani Lusain – Women's Basketball – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Catelyn Preston – Women's Basketball – Strategic Communication

Shay Young – Women's Basketball – Biology

Siupeli Anau – Football – Parks & Recreation Management

Patrick Baldenegro – Football – Biomedical Science

Marc Cooper – Football – Marketing

Kourey Gabriel – Football – Strategic Communication

Keith Graham – Football – Biomedical Science

John Herrero – Football – Business Economics

Dylan Kegans – Football – Strategic Communication

Dylan LaFrenz – Football – Applied Computer Science

Lorenzo Melvin – Football – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Kyle Renning – Football – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Javere Smith – Football – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Jabril Taylor – Football – Sociology

Deon Young – Football – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Savana Bezdicek – Golf – Mechanical Engineering

Kim Cifuentes – Golf – Management

Jacquie LeMarr – Golf – Journalism

Lindsay Doyle – Soccer – Finance

Missy Kettelkamp – Soccer – Accountancy

Ali Lixandru – Soccer – Marketing

Meg O'Brien – Soccer – Biomedical Science

Nicole Sherwin – Soccer – Biomedical Science

Mattie Wojcik – Soccer – Finance

Alexa Geiger – Swimming & Diving – Special & Elementary Education

Urte Kazakeviciute – Swimming & Diving – Health Science – Fitness & Wellness

Sara Lenhoff – Swimming & Diving – Biomedical Science

Marta Lewandowska – Women's Tennis – Psychological Sciences

Shawn Collins – Men's Track & Field – Biomedical Science

Micael Ljungberg – Men's Track & Field – Mechanical Engineering

DeShon Norris – Men's Track & Field – Construction Management

Nathan Weitz – Men's Cross Country/Track & Field – Forestry

Aeryana Earl – Women's Track & Field – Management

Jazzmine Ecker – Women's Track & Field – Criminology & Criminal Justice

Melanie Townsend – Women's Cross Country/Track & Field – Biomedical Science

Julia Viberg – Women's Track & Field – Marketing

Melanie Zibrat – Women's Cross Country/Track & Field – Biomedical Science

Lauren Jacobsen – Volleyball – Finance

Addy Lofstedt – Volleyball – Biomedical Science