For the sixth consecutive year, the Baylor girls' cross country team has been selected by the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA) for its Distinguished Academic Achievement Award.
The award is based on the team’s collective GPA, with 3.25 to 4.0 meriting a team the Distinguished certificate. The Baylor team, with 21 members, posted a remarkable collective GPA of 3.82, the highest mark ever for the Baylor squad. The school will receive a certificate recognizing the team, and each member of the team will also receive a certificate.
The Individual Academic Achievement certificate is awarded to student-athletes who earn a GPA of 3.5 or above. Nineteen team members, over 90% of the team, were recognized individually for this award.
The Red Raiders were impressive on the course as well this year, finishing third at the state meet, led by individual state champion freshman Mae Mae Powe and 3-time All-Stater sophomore Helen Webb in ninth.
Baylor head coach Heather Ott is understandably proud of the group, both as students and athletes. "With senior captains Rosa Anderson Barrera and Janie Pippenger at the helm, Baylor cross country's culture of excellence was once again in good hands! The pandemic complicated everything this fall, but these young women nevertheless dedicated themselves to athletic and academic performance. This program seeks to provide an experience that both challenges and empowers the athletes, and to finish with the highest collective GPA ever and having Mae Mae as our state champion embodies so much of what we seek to accomplish,” said Ott.
The 2020-2021 team members are seniors Rosa Anderson Barrera, Janie Pippenger, and Catharine Williams; juniors Morgen Newton, Sarah Kathryn Oliver, and Maddie Perry, sophomores Grace Burks, Caroline Dart, Natalia Forato, Ava James, Addison Johnson, Ellie Myers, Marguerite Pippenger, Mikala Dupre, Charlotte Ann Haddock, Nora Redding, and Helen Webb; and ninth graders Ava Greer Allan, Sophia Glover, Mae Mae Powe, and Allison Royal.