RICHMOND, Va. – Elon University had a league-high five student-athletes chosen as recipients of the Colonial Athletic Association’s inaugural Leadership and Sport Excellence Awards, as announced by the conference office on Wednesday, July 18.
The award mirrors the Dean Ehlers Leadership Award, which is presented in men’s and women’s basketball, and the Chuck Boone Leadership Award, which is presented in football. One student-athlete was chosen from each of the 19 other sports sponsored by the CAA for embodying the highest standards of leadership, integrity, teamwork and sportsmanship in his or her academic and athletic achievements. The winners are chosen by the CAA Faculty Athletics Representatives.
Among the five Phoenix athletes honored were Stephanie Asher (women’s lacrosse), Erica Braschi (women’s tennis), Sydney Busa (volleyball), Matthew Jegier (men’s soccer) and Sydney Schilling (women’s soccer). Elon was one of CAA five schools to have multiple honorees along with Towson (four), UNCW (three), College of Charleston (two) and James Madison (two).
A two-time Tewaaraton Trophy Watch List candidate and the CAA’s 2017 Scholar-Athlete of the Year for lacrosse, Asher wrapped her career having earned first team All-CAA selection three-straight years from 2016-18. Starting every game of her four-year career, Asher closed her career as Elon’s leader in both goals (179) and points (211) while scoring 58 goals in 2017 to place among the CAA’s all-time leaders for a single season. In all four years, Asher was a member of the Commissioner’s Academic Award, graduating Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. in Exercise Science. Asher put her studies to use off the field in volunteering at a pediatric rehabilitation clinic among other activities.
Braschi, the 2017-18 CAA Institutional Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, is a three-time All-CAA selection for both singles and doubles as a Phoenix. This past spring, Braschi was named Elon’s recipient of the Robert C. Browne Memorial Sportsmanship Award, coming a year after she received the ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award for the Carolina Region. Braschi concluded her career as one of the best in program history in dual matches, finishing second all-time in singles wins (59) and third in doubles victories (53). She was a three-time ITA Scholar-Athlete, a member of Phi Kappa Phi and earned the CAA Commissioner’s Academic Award each year on the way to earning a degree in Biochemistry.
Closing her career as one of the most decorated players in Elon volleyball history, Busa became the program’s first first team All-CAA honoree in 2017, wrapping her career with the fifth-most kills (1,361) and 10th-most digs (1,147) in program history. A team captain in 2017, Busa was also voted the team MVP. In 2016 and 2017, Busa was voted as a CoSIDA Academic All-District 3 honoree as well as earning CAA Commissioner’s Academic Award accolades from 2014-17. Busa has completed internships with both the Atlantic Coast Conference and Chesapeake Bayhawks, utilizing her degree in Sport and Event Management.
Jegier has started every game in goal since 2015 for the Phoenix and became the program’s all-time career shutouts leader with 26. The 2017 team MVP, he was voted first team All-CAA after tying the single-season program record with 10 shutouts on the year to lead the league. The Charlotte, N.C., native has twice earned first team CoSIDA Academic All-District 3 honors and was chosen to the 2017 NCAA Scholar All-Region Teams by the United Soccer Coaches Association. A finance major, Jegier was selected to the “Best & Brightest Business Majors” list for 2018 by business education news outlet Poets & Quants. He also took part in three separate study abroad opportunities and served as president of Elon’s SAAC. Jegier graduated Magna Cum Laude from Elon this spring and will return for the Phoenix this fall as a redshirt senior.
Schilling has been an outstanding student-athletes throughout her four season and concluded her career with a 2017 CoSIDA Academic All-District 3 selection in 2017. A three-time CAA Commissioner’s Academic Award selection, Schilling served was a team captain for the Phoenix during her senior season in 2017. She was also this year’s recipient of the A.L. Hook Scholar-Athlete award, which is given to the Phoenix male and female junior or senior athlete who possessed the highest cumulative grade-point average with a minimum of two years of playing time at Elon. For her career, Schilling appeared in 70 matches for the Phoenix while participating in Phi Beta Kappa honor society and Elon’s SAAC, among other activities off the field. Schilling was named Elon’s Most Outstanding First Year Physics Student in May 2015 and graduated with a 3.95 GPA.