Silva Snags Top Academic Honor

  • By Shannon McNamara
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  • November 26, 2013 03:42 PM
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Senior Frances Silva led the Mountaineers to at least one conference title in each of her four years at WVU.
(All-Pro Photography/Dale Sparks Photo)
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.  – West Virginia University senior Frances Silva has been chosen as the winner of the Capital One Academic All-America of the Year award for NCAA Division I women’s soccer, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
The senior forward from Overland Park, Kan., also was named to the Capital One Academic All-America Women’s Soccer First Team, her first career selection.
Silva is the third Mountaineer to earn a sport’s highest academic honor. Joe Herber earned the men’s basketball honor in 2006, and Marcos Scrivner (rifle) won the men’s fall and winter sports distinction in 1998.
Today’s first-team honor is the third such distinction for the WVU women’s soccer team, and the first since Ashley Banks scored the award in 2007. Four student-athletes have earned five CoSIDA Academic All-America distinctions in the program’s 18 years.
“I am so proud of how Frances constantly pushed the standard of excellence on and off the field during her time at WVU,” says Mountaineer coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “For her to earn an academic award of this magnitude speaks volumes of how special Frances is. Through her hard work and focus, she placed herself in an elite category for all that she accomplished as a Mountaineer student-athlete.”
Silva earned her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism in three years, carrying a 3.97 grade point average (GPA). She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in sport management. The 2013 Dr. Gerald Lage Award honoree, the Big 12 Conference’s highest academic honor, she was a Senior Class Award candidate this year. Named to the 2012 NSCAA Scholar All-East Region third team, Silva is a President’s and Dean’s list honoree and a member of the WVU Garrett Ford Academic Honor Roll.
A two-time member of the Academic All-Big 12 Soccer Team, Silva led the Mountaineers to a 16-4-3 record in her final season at WVU and the program’s first Big 12 Conference Soccer Championship. The unanimous Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, she also helped the team win its second straight conference regular-season title, giving her at least one conference championship in each of her four seasons at WVU.
One of three team captains, Silva, a member of the 2013 All-Big 12 First Team, led the Mountaineers with a Big 12-best 43 points (15 G, 13 A). Her assist total set the program’s single-season record, while her point total ranks No. 2 and her goal mark ranks No. 4. Additionally, she graduates ranked No. 4 all-time in career goals (38) and points (98).  

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