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Courtesy: WMU

Furgason and Weber Presented MAC Medal of Excellence

Courtesy: Kristin Keirns, associate director of athletic media relations
Release: 06/01/2016
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CLEVELAND, Ohio- Twenty-four Mid-American Conference (MAC) student-athletes were presented the Medal of Excellence Award during this evening’s Honors Dinner Ceremony at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel as part of the MAC Spring Meetings.

The Medal of Excellence is an award presented annually to one male and one female student-athlete from the graduating class of each of the 12 conference member institutions. Receiving the honor for Western Michigan was men’s soccer player Connor Furgason and gymnast Kayla Weber.

“The Medal of Excellence Award is a reinforcement of the core values that we as a conference and each of our member institutions all possess with excellence in academics, athletics, leadership and service,” said MAC Commissioner, Jon A. Steinbrecher. “We congratulate all of our Medal of Excellence Award winners.”

To be honored with the Medal of Excellence Award, student-athletes had to participate on the varsity level in a conference sponsored sport and shown evidence of academic success with a minimum 3.50 accumulative grade-point average, exhibited athletics excellence, leadership and service.  Selection of the recipients was made by each MAC institution.

Furgason was the starting center back and team captain of the men’s soccer team this past fall that set a school record for shutouts (12) and earned its first ever Top 25 ranking. The team finished with an overall record of 11-4-4. Furgason had a highly decorated career on and off the field at Western Michigan. He was a two-time First Team All-MAC selection, a 2013 MAC All-Tournament Team selection, a two-time NSCAA All-Region Scholar, a three-time Academic All-MAC selection and twice was recognized as a MAC Distinguished Scholar-Athlete. During his career, he totaled 11 goals and four assists. Furgason was on the Dean’s List seven out of eight semesters and maintained a 3.66 GPA, majoring in marketing.

Weber carried a perfect 4.0 GPA, studying biomedical sciences and was on the Dean’s List every semester at Western Michigan. She was the 2013 MAC Freshman of the Year, helping the Broncos win the MAC Championships that year. Weber holds the school all-around record and was runner-up in the all-around at the 2015 MAC Championships. During her career, she has been a First Team All-MAC selection, a MAC All-Tournament Team selection, a three-time Academic All-MAC honoree and twice has been named a MAC Distinguished Scholar-Athlete. She qualified and competed in the NCAA regionals and was a member of the MAC/Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC).

2016 Medal of Excellence Award Winners
Akron: Andrew Sounders (men’s soccer); Hannah Raspopovich (women’s swimming & diving)
Ball State: Alex Call (baseball); Shelby Merder (women’s basketball)
Bowling Green: Ryan James (men’s soccer); Alyssa Nocella (gymnastics)
Buffalo: Tyler Grassman (football); Mackenzie Loesing (women’s basketball)
Central Michigan: Ryan Heeke (baseball); Breanne Lesnar (women’s cross country/track & field)
Eastern Michigan: Andrew Henry (men’s swimming & diving); Julia Lombardi (women’s soccer)
Kent State: Jordan Italiano (football); Roseanne Erickson (women’s track & field)
Miami: Jacob Prodoehl (men’s swimming & diving); Kathie Wollney (women’s track & field)
Northern Illinois: Drew Hare (football); Emily Naegele (softball)
Ohio: Blake Scipio (football); Abby Gilleland (volleyball)
Toledo: John Martillota (baseball); Samantha Richart (women’s swimming & diving)
Western Michigan: Connor Furgason (men’s soccer); Kayla Weber (gymnastics)