PHILADELPHIA - The Ivy League released its list of student-athletes selected for Academic All-Ivy honors for the fall of 2011. The 80 men and women, 10 of which were from Penn, were starters or key reserves on an officially recognized varsity team with 3.0 or better cumulative grade point averages. Each institution nominated five men and five women from its fall student-athletes.
Christian Barreiro earned his second first-team All-Ivy nod this fall after setting career highs in goals (7) and points (21) - leading the men's soccer team in both categories. One of the most prolific playmakers in recent history, Barreiro led the Ivy League in assists for the second season in a row with seven helpers and finished with 58 career points - fourth most by a Penn player since 1969. Not just a passer, Barreiro took 64 shots, the most in the Ivy League, connecting twice on penalty kicks to finish his career a perfect 5-for-5 on PKs. Barreiro is enrolled in Wharton with a concentration in marketing.
Todd Busler was a two-time team captain for the sprint football team and earned his second first-team All-CSFL honor at the quarterback position in 2011. This past season he threw for 1,681 yards, which was just one yard short of the program's all-time mark that he set as a sophomore. He finished the season with 20 touchdowns passing and a team-high seven rushing. He holds the program's all-time record with 4,423 passing yards and has eight of the top-10 single game passing performances. Busler was also named to the Philadelphia Inquirer Academic All-Area team as a junior. He is an urban studies major.
Senior wideout Ryan Calvert earned first-team All-Ivy accolades. He finished second in the Ivies with 58 receptions and fourth in the league with 641 receiving yards. Calvert combined for 20 catches in his final two games to finish with the eighth-highest single season reception total in Penn history, and the most since Dan Castles caught 71 passes in 2003. Calvert's five receiving touchdowns this season moved him into a tie for ninth all-time in Penn's single-season history books. He is majoring in economics.
Sprint football's Matt Cuccinello led the Collegiate Sprint Football League (CSFL) with 74 tackles, 46 solo, on his way to earning first-team All-CSFL honors as a linebacker. As a defensive captain, Cuccinello had 10-plus tackles in each of the first six games, leading the team in tackles five times this past season. He finished the year with 12.5 tackles for loss, including 3.5 sacks. He also forced and recovered one fumble. Twice he earned the CSFL Defensive Player of the Week award. Cuccinello is majoring in economics.
George Dickson was one of Penn's five scorers on four occasions during the 2011 cross country season, including the Heptagonal Championships in which he was the top Quaker finisher. Dickson began the season finishing 56th overall at the Fordham Fiasco in a time of 27:18. A week later, running the same course, Dickson dropped his time by nearly 40 seconds. He again found his stride late in the year, finishing second on the team and 39th overall in 27:32 at the Penn State National Invitational, before his team-best 26:02 in a driving snowstorm at Heps. Dickson wrapped up his season by competing at the NCAA East Regional where he was 97th overall in the 10k race. He is enrolled in Wharton with concentrations in finances and statistics.
A junior captain for the women's soccer team, Erin Beck helped lead Penn to its best record in program history, at 14-2-1, and was a first-team All-Ivy pick at the end of the season. A starter in all 17 matches at center midfield, Beck finished 2011 with two goals and two assists for six points. She is a visual studies major.
Margaret Diacont was a top-three finisher for the Quakers in every meet this season. Her best two results came at the Fordham Fiasco (18:45 in a 5k) where she was 16th overall and a week later at the Iona Meet of Champions (22:40 in a 6k) where she finished sixth overall. Diacont was the top overall Penn finisher at the Paul Short Invitational on Sept. 30 with a time of 22:32 and finished 47th at both the Penn State National Invitational and the Heptagonal Championships. Battling an illness to close the season at the NCAA East Regional, Diacont still managed to be the third Quaker to cross the finish line, wrapping up her season with a time of 23:57, good for 73rd overall. She is majoring in fine arts.
Mandy Epstein started all 17 games on field hockey's defense that allowed 20 fewer goals in 2011 than the previous season. She was on the field the entire time in 15 of those 17 games, playing all but 14 minutes the entire season. Epstein finished with two defensive saves, tied for seventh-best in the Ivy League. She has been a member of the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Academic Squad in each of her seasons at Penn. Epstein is majoring in psychology.
Adrienne Lerner, a captain for women's soccer, earned first-team All-Ivy recognition after leading a defense that set a program record for shutouts in a season (13) and led the nation in shutout percentage. Penn women's soccer gave up just seven goals in 17 matches this season as the Quakers went 14-2-1 overall and finished second in Ivy League play at 5-1-1. Lerner is majoring in political science.
A first-team All-Ivy selection, Dani Shepherd ranked third in the nation in digs per set (6.16) and finished second in Penn history for digs in a season (579). With 32 aces on the season, Shepherd topped the Ivy League in that category and had a career-high seven aces at Toledo on Sept. 10. She also set and then broke her own school record for digs in a match, first with 41 against Alabama on Sept. 10, followed by 45 against Harvard on Oct. 1. Shepherd appeared in all 24 matches, and played in 94 of 96 sets for the Quakers this season. A sophomore, she has not declared a major yet.