Classroom Dominance

YUMA, Ariz. – One of the best years in Arizona Western athletics keeps getting better! A record 25 student-athletes earned All-Academic Student-Athlete Awards from the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) for posting at least a 3.6 GPA on a 4.00 scale through two semesters.

Chyrome Thorpe (football) and Marlon Atondo (men’s soccer) both were 2016-17 NJCAA First Team All-Academic honorees by posting a 4.0 GPA during the academic year.

Six players earned 2016-17 NJCAA Second Team All-Academic Honors by finishing with a GPA between 3.8 and 3.99.

  • Sally Gastelo (softball, 3.80 GPA).
  • Abigail Rosales (women’s soccer, 3.81 GPA)
  • Caylin Espericueta (softball, 3.85 GPA)
  • Isaiah Brown (men’s basketball, 3.89 GPA)
  • Eduardo Banuelos (men’s soccer, 3.90 GPA)
  • Daisy Matedne (women’s soccer, 3.91 GPA)

The remaining 17 student-athletes earned a spot on the 2016-17 NJCAA All-Academic Third Team.

  • Julie Roach (softball, 3.60 GPA)
  • Isabel Sanchez (softball, 3.61 GPA)
  • Mitzy Rangel (women’s soccer, 3.62 GPA)
  • Sam Jara Villegas (softball (3.62 GPA)
  • Cinthya Samaniego (women’s soccer, 3.65 GPA)
  • Burke Twyman (men’s basketball, 3.65 GPA)
  • Jasmine Miranda (women’s soccer, 3.69 GPA)
  • Jessica Williams (women’s soccer, 3.70 GPA)
  • Gabby Ramirez (softball, 3.73 GPA)
  • Fabian Munoz (men’s soccer, 3.74 GPA)
  • Aiyanna Bengtzen (softball, 3.74 GPA)
  • Igor Djordjev (men’s soccer, 3.74 GPA)
  • Seely Hartman (volleyball, 3.74 GPA)
  • Keana Smalls (volleyball 3.78 GPA)
  • Jasmine Morice (women’s soccer, 3.78 GPA)
  • Karla Navarro (women’s soccer, 3.78 GPA)
  • Pabla Sicairos (women’s soccer, 3.78 GPA)

On top of the individual awards, the softball team (3.26 GPA), women’s soccer team (3.18 GPA) and volleyball team (3.11) were also recognized for maintaining at least a 3.0 GPA during the year.

Combined, the athletic teams finished with a 2.993 GPA on the year, and more than 55 players have signed with four-year schools. Seven teams also made the playoffs this year, and four teams claimed either the conference title or region title (or both). Two teams competed at nationals, and three more were right on the cusp. With the fall schedules recently released, the Matadors are gearing back up for the 2017-18 season!

Arizona Western College is one of the top community colleges in Arizona. The college boasts partnerships with all three state universities that include face-to-face classes in Yuma. AWC leads the state in enrollment growth over the past 10 years and handed out more than 2,400 certificates and degrees in 2015-16.


© Arizona Western College