Courtesy of Elizabethtown, Moravian, and Scranton Athletic Communications
To be eligible for Google Cloud Academic All-America® honors, a student-athlete must maintain at least a 3.30 grade-point average, be a sophomore, junior or senior and be a starter or significant reserve.
By making the All-District First Team, the five selections are now forwarded onto the national ballot to try for Google Cloud Academic All-America® accolades, which will be announced on June 25. There were a total of three student-athletes from the Landmark Conference on Academic All-District Teams.
Scranton senior Mark Merli becomes the first men's track & field competitor to earn to earn Academic All-District honors from CoSIDA in just the second year of the program's existence. He recently concluded a strong two-year career to help Scranton launch its track & field program.
This past spring, Merli finished fifth in the Landmark Conference Championships in the long jump with school and person record mark of 6.60 meters while taking eighth place in the triple jump with a leap of 12.19 meters. He helped the Royals tie for fifth place in the team competition.
During the indoor season, Merli posted a pair of top-five results at the Landmark Conference Championships, taking fourth in the triple jump with a mark of 12.37 meters and was fifth in the long jump, checking in at 6.42 meters. His performance helped Scranton to a sixth place team finish. Merli was the runner-up in the long jump at the DuCharme Invitation hosted by Dickinson on February 10 while also placing third in the 55 meter dash with a time of 6.99 meters
During his junior year, Merli finished fourth in the long jump at the Landmark Conference Outdoor Championships and placed fifth in three events at the Landmark Conference Indoor Championships: long jump, triple jump, and 4x200 meter relay. The Royals finished in sixth place in both championship meets.
Merli competed in six different events during his career at Scranton, posting personal bests of 6.99 seconds in the 55 meter dash, 7.64 seconds in the 60 meter dash, 11.61 seconds in the 100 meter dash, 25.33 seconds in the 200 meter dash, 6.60 in the long jump, and 12.83 in the triple jump.
He holds Scranton's indoor school record for the long jump and the program's outdoor records for both the long jump and the triple jump.
Merli excelled in the classroom as well, holding a 3.90 cumulative grade point average as an exercise science major. He was a four-time Landmark Conference Academic Honor Roll selection and was named to the Landmark Conference Winter All-Sportsmanship Team this past season.
Merli also earned Landmark Conference Field Athlete of the Week honors on February 4, 2019 and was named The University of Scranton Athlete of the Week the following week.
Sam Gerstenbacher of Elizabethtown was an individual champion in cross country, indoor, and outdoor track & field, Gerstenbacher also qualified for the outdoor national championship meet for the second season in a row. It was his second time at a national meet during the 2018-19 academic year after also qualifying for cross country nationals.
As a student, Gerstenbacher has achieved a cumulative grade point average of 3.56 to date and is one of two athletes from the Landmark Conference to be selected to the First Team.
The 2019 Google Cloud Academic All-District® Men's and Women's Track & Field/Cross Country Teams, selected by CoSIDA, recognize the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances on the field and in the classroom.
Catholic's Kiera Lyons is the third member of the women's track and field team to earn CoSIDA Academic All-District honors in as many years, joining Danielle Caruccio '17 and Eileen McAlonan '18 who were both selected in 2017. Academically, Lyons graduated earlier this month with a dual degree and 3.85 grade-point average. She received a bachelor of science degree in physics with a minor in mathematics as well as a bachelor of arts in studio art and a concentration in painting. She was a member of the Dean's List every semester, a nine-time Landmark Conference Academic Honor Roll selection, a two-time USTFCCCA Cross Country Individual National All-Academic honoree and was named the 2018 Landmark Conference Women's Cross Country Senior Scholar Athlete.
Athletically, Lyons was a seven-time USTFCCCA All-South/Southeast Region and five-time All-Landmark Conference selection. She won two Landmark Conference championships in the steeplechase and distance medley relay while setting the conference championship meet record in the DMR. She also holds the school record in the steeplechase, 3,000 meters and 5,000 meters, both indoor and outdoor, and owns the cross country program's fastest tim in the 6k.
Lyons competed in four sports at Catholic, winning a Landmark Conference championship in women's soccer as a freshman in 2015.
Moravian's Carly Danoski is majoring in environmental science with a minor in French at Moravian, and she has a 3.95 GPA. This year, Danoski qualified for the NCAA Division III National Championships both indoors and outdoors in the 800-meter run, finishing 16th indoors with a time of 2:17.84 and taking 18th outdoors in 2:15.69. Danoski also made the NCAA Championships outdoors in 2018, finishing 19th in a time of 2:13.53 after qualifying with a school record time of 2:10.72. She also has the school record indoors with a time of 2:14.13 set in 2019 to send her to the national championships.
Danoski won the 2019 Landmark Conference Outdoor titles in the 800-meter run and 1,500-meter run while also running a leg on the winning 4x400-meter relay squad. This past February at the Landmark Conference Indoor Championship, Danoski captured first place in the 800-meter run and the 4x400-meter relay, and last fall, she earned Landmark All-Conference Second Team honors with a tenth place finish. In 2018, Danoski won the Landmark Conference title in the 800-meter un both indoors and outdoors.
Off of the track and course, Danoski has named to the Landmark Conference Academic Honor Roll six times, twice each in the fall, winter and spring while being on Moravian's Dean's List six times. Danoski is also a member of Moravian's Chi Alpha Sigma National College Athlete Honor Society. She also participates in Emerging Leaders, the Greyhound Leadership Program, is a writing center tutor and a writing fellow on campus.
Greyhound Jordan Luciano has completed her degree in computer science at Moravian, and she graduated with a 4.00 GPA. This year, she was a member of Moravian's winning 4x100-meter relay team as the Greyhounds won their 12th straight Landmark Conference outdoor title, and Luciano also earned Landmark All-Conference Second Team honors for runner-up finishes in the 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash and long jump outdoors. Indoors back in February, Luciano was the runner-up in the 200-meter dash and long jump for Second Team accolades. She won the Landmark Conference Championship in the long jump both indoors and outdoors in 2018, and Luciano picked up a title in the 4x100-meter relay in 2018 as well as she helped the Hounds win four conference titles, two indoors and two outdoors, in her two seasons in Bethlehem.
Off of the track, Luciano was honored as the 2019 Landmark Conference Senior Scholar-Athlete for Women's Indoor Track & Field, and she named to the Landmark Conference Winter Academic Honor Roll twice and the Landmark Conference Spring Academic Honor Roll two times in her two years at Moravian. Luciano was also a member of Moravian's Chi Alpha Sigma National College Athlete Honor Society while being on Moravian's Dean's List all four semesters she was at the school. She is also a pair of Moravian's coding club. Luciano spent the first two years of her collegiate career at Johns Hopkins University, and she was a member of Moravian's women's soccer squad in her first year in Bethlehem.