RICHMOND, Va. – Sophomore Nick Ciolkowski of the Elon University men’s cross country team was named the Colonial Athletic Association Men’s Cross Country Athlete of the Year for the second straight season as announced by the league office on Friday, Dec. 2.
Ciolkowski was one of six members between the Phoenix men’s and women’s cross country programs that was recognized on the All-CAA teams including Melissa Anastasakis, who was named the league’s Women’s Cross Country Rookie of the Year. This is also the second straight year that Elon has earned the CAA Rookie of the Year award on the women’s side.
Senior Kimberly Johansen and sophomore Coralea Geraniotis received All-CAA honors on the women’s side. Ciolkowski was the lone representative on the all-league team for the Phoenix men. Senior Shelby Cuddeback and redshirt freshman Michael Germinario were chosen on the CAA All-Academic team on the women’s and men’s side, respectively.
Ciolkowski successfully defended his individual league title after winning the men’s 8K at the CAA Championships with a time of 25:08.10 – 13 seconds faster than the runner-up. During the season, he set a new personal-best time of 24:16.01 in the 8K at the Greater Louisville Classic and was named the CAA Runner of the Week three times this season.
Johansen was third overall at the CAA Championships – the highest conference finish ever for an Elon female – with a time of 21:26.42 in the 6K race. She closed out her cross country career with a school-record time of 20:51.7 in the 6K at the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships. Her 14th-place finish was the highest ever for the Elon women at the regional meet at the Division I era as the Chelmsford, England, native received All-Region accolades for the second straight year. She also broke the program’s 5K school-record at the Greater Louisville Classic earlier during the year with a time of 17:23.40.
Geraniotis was second Phoenix runner to cross the finish line at the league championship meet as the Orleans, Mass., native was eighth overall with a time of 22:04.19. The 2015 CAA Women’s Cross Country Rookie of the Year, Geraniotis finished the season with a new personal-best time in the 6K with a 21:44.7 at the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships.
Anastasakis joined Johansen and Geraniotis as All-CAA performers after the Hillsdale, Ontario, native was 12th overall at the CAA Championships with a time of 22:18.35 in the 6K race. She later set a new season-best time of 21:54.8 in the 6K at the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships.
Cuddeback was the Phoenix’s representative for the women on the CAA All-Academic Team. The Attleboro, Mass., native competed in five meets this season and is double majoring in biochemistry and psychology with a 3.63 cumulative GPA.
Germinario competed in his first season with the Phoenix running in six races. A double major in accounting and finance with a cumulative 3.93 GPA, Germinario was third Phoenix runner to cross the line at the CAA Championships with a time of 26:53.8 in the men’s 8K.