SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Three members of the Western New England University football team were recognized when the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) announced its Academic All-District teams on Thursday.
Senior offensive lineman Liam McDonnell (Methuen, Mass.), junior wide receiver Steven Fedorchak (Guilderland, N.Y.) and junior defensive back Aaron Lamar (North Conway, N.H.) all earned spots on the CoSIDA District 1 First Team.
CoSIDA's Academic All-District Teams recognize the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances on the field and in the classroom. In order to be eligible, a student-athlete must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 or higher, have reached sophomore academic and athletic standing, and be a significant on-field contributor.
McDonnell, a biomedical engineering major with a 3.67 GPA, is a two-time Commonwealth Coast Football All-Academic honoree and a Chi Alpha Sigma National College Athlete Honor Society inductee.
McDonnell anchors the offensive line for a Western New England unit that leads the CCC in total offense (4,330 yards), passing yards (2,558) and rushing touchdowns (26). The Golden Bears also rank second in the conference in rushing yards (1,772), rushing yards per attempt (5.0) and scoring offense (40.1 points per game).
Fedorchak, an accounting major with a 3.77 GPA, was an Academic All-CCC selection as a sophomore last season. On the field, he is enjoying a breakout junior campaign with ten receiving touchdowns and 839 receiving yards, which rank tied for first and third in the conference, respectively.
In Western New England's 56-35 victory over Westfield State on September 13, he set single-game program records for receiving yards (319) and receiving touchdowns (five). Fedorchak was named to the D3football.com Team of the Week in addition to earning CCC Football Offensive Player of the Week and New England Football Writers Gold Helmet honors following his historic performance. He also broke the program's single-season record for receiving yards in last week's win over Becker.
Lamar, civil engineering major with a 3.43 GPA, was named to the Academic All-CCC Team as a sophomore last season. He ranks fourth on the team and tied for 16th in the conference with 55 tackles. Lamar has also recorded two interceptions, three pass breakups and a forced fumble. He was named the CCC Football Defensive Player of the Week on October 27 after totaling nine tackles and an interception in Western New England's 49-27 win over Curry College.
In addition to their academic and athletic accomplishments, McDonnell, Fedorchak and Lamar are all active in community service as the football team works with Revitalize CDC to repair homes of less fortunate families in Springfield.
Western New England (8-1, 6-0 CCC Football) wraps up its regular season schedule at home on Saturday against Husson, with opening kickoff set for 1 p.m. at Golden Bear Stadium.