CCSU golfer earns honor

From staff reports

Clayton State University golfer Steven Sanders was named to the 2005 ESPN the Magazine Academic All-America Men's At-Large team for District III.

A junior from Snellville, Sanders (Shiloh High School graduate) is a two-year letterwinner and currently has a 4.0 grade point average. He also had Clayton State's second-lowest scoring average in 2004-05, and placed 27th in the team's season-ending event, the Peach Belt Conference Championships.

The At-Large designation encompasses all NCAA Division II, Division III and NAIA schools in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

It also includes a number of sports besides golf, which are volleyball, rifle, gymnastics, sking, water polo, fencing, ice hockey, swimming, wrestling, lacrosse and tennis.

Other academic honors in 2004-05 for Sanders include him being named Clayton State's Most Outstanding Marketing Student and receiving the H. Mason Barfield Award, given the male student-athlete with the highest grade point average.

By being named to the Academic All-America District III team, Sanders becomes eligible to be later named an Academic All-America, which includes nominees from all eight districts.

Sanders is the second Laker to be named All-District this season, as Clayton State senior women's soccer player Nkiru Okosieme was also named to the Academic All-America District III team.

Simmons takes 10th at NCAAs

Clayton State University sprinter Eric Simmons came one spot from making the finals of the NCAA Division II National Championships in the 400m, bringing his season to an end in the preliminaries of the event Thursday evening in Abilene, Texas.

Simmons, a sophomore from Carrollton, tied for 10th in the race with a time of 48.01. The top nine runners advanced to the finals of the meet hosted at Abilene Christian University's Elmer Gray Stadium. Simmons placed third in his heat with E.J. Falker from Northwest Missouri State winning the heat with a time of 46.75.

Abilene Christian's Marvin Essor posted the fastest time from the three heats with a time of 46.44. Simmons entered the race with the 11th fastest time in the 400m and was one of 21 participants.

Clayton State has one other runner at the national meet, as junior Brian Etelman will run in the 200m race on Friday at 7:30 p.m. He will enter the race with the eighth fastest time and be one of 24 runners also in three heats.

The winner's of the three heats, plus the next six finishers advance to the finals on Saturday with the top eight finishers in the finals receiving All-America honors. Simmons was competing in the 400m at nationals for the second straight year. He qualified for this year's meet with a school record time of 47.12 at the Georgia Invitational in Athens. Last year, Simmons placed 16th in the 400m as a freshman. Etelman, a junior from Marietta, qualified for the meet with a school record time of 21.08 earlier this season at the Georgia meet.