Cal's Asturias named Pac-12 gymnastics scholar-athlete of the year

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - CALIFORNIA’s Alicia Austurias was named the Pac-12 Women’s Gymnastics Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the Conference office announced on Saturday at the Pac-12 Women’s Gymnastics Championships. The award, which is presented in each of the 22 sports the Conference sponsors, was established to honor collegiate student-athletes that are standouts both academically and in their sports discipline.
 
Asturias is set to graduate in May as a psychology major with a 3.83 GPA. The senior was named to the 2012 and 2013 Pac-12 All-Academic First Team and is a recipient of the Cal Athletics Golden Bear Award, awarded to the student-athlete with the highest GPA on the team. Asturias is a member of the Dean’s List for the College of Letters and Sciences, Pre-Med Honor Society, International Golden Key Honor Society, and International Honor Society in Psychology: Psi Chi. Her post-graduate goals include attending medical school to pursue pediatric orthopedics or psychological research. Aside from her schoolwork, Asturias has shown an undying love for art and has worked with various organizations to share her passion with the community. She volunteers to teach weekly art classes catered to the unique mental and physical needs of Alzheimer patients at the Alzheimer Institute of the East Bay, as well as facilitated an Art for Social Change course and gallery event for UC Berkeley students. 
 
The Granite Bay, Calif., native, has been one of the most consistent gymnasts to compete for the Golden Bears, excelling both on the gym floor and in the classroom. Entering the Pac-12 Championships, the Cal captain is a near perfect 38-for-40 in hit routines and owns an individual team high in three of the five event categories in 2014. Asturias also leads California with 12 event titles and produced 25 top three finishes so far this season. She is the first Gymnast since 2003 to claim Pac-12 Gymnast of the Week honors and owns career-high scores of 9.9 or better on three of the four events including a program-record 9.95 on the vault and 39.400 in the all-around. During her career at Cal, Asturias has recorded a second-place uneven bars finish at the NCAA Corvallis Regional in 2013 and was one of three Cal gymnasts to earn an individual berth at the NCAA Regionals in 2011.
 
In order to be eligible for the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, student-athletes must be a senior (in athletics eligibility) on track to receive a degree, have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, participate in at least 50% of the scheduled contests in the sport and have a minimum of one year in residence at the institution. Each Pac-12 institution may nominate one individual per sport, and the winners are selected by a committee of Pac-12 staff members at the conclusion of each sport’s regular season. The athletic accomplishments of the nominees are a consideration in the voting for the award.
 
A Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be named in each of the Pac-12’s 22 sponsored sports: baseball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s cross country, women’s cross country, football, men’s golf, women’s golf, women’s gymnastics, men’s rowing, women’s rowing, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, softball, men’s swimming & diving, women’s swimming & diving, men’s tennis, women’s tennis, men’s track & field, women’s track & field, women’s volleyball, and wrestling.
The Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year Awards were established during the 2007-08 academic year.
 
Other nominees included: Shana Sangston, ARIZ; Shonna Morgan, STAN; Hailee Hansen, UTAH; Aliza Vaccher, WASH.
 

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