Feb. 4, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame senior guard/tri-captain Melissa Lechlitner (Mishawaka, Ind./South Bend St. Joseph’s) has been named to the 2010 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District V Second Team, it was announced Thursday by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
It’s the first time Lechlitner has earned the award, and she is the first Fighting Irish player to garner academic all-district status since 2006, when former Notre Dame point guard Megan Duffy received her second consecutive district award and parlayed that into first-team Academic All-America honors. What’s more, Lechlitner becomes the eighth Fighting Irish women’s basketball player in the past 12 seasons to be an academic all-district selection.
Lechlitner currently maintains a 3.377 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) in the College of Arts and Letters, where is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in psychology. She earned dean’s list honors in the spring of 2007 with a 3.75 semester GPA, and is coming off a stellar fall 2009 term that saw her post a 3.583 GPA. In addition, she is a three-time BIG EAST Conference All-Academic Team selection and is a prime candidate to make that squad once again this year.
On the court, Lechlitner has started all 21 games this season, ranking among the BIG EAST leaders in assists (13th – 3.3 apg.) and assist/turnover ratio (9th – 1.33), while also averaging 8.0 points per game and leading the team in both three-point percentage (.455) and free throw percentage (.818), although she has not made enough shots in either category to qualify for a conference ranking (1.0 three-pointers/game and 2.0 free throws/game). In league play, she ranks 12th in the BIG EAST in assists (3.3 apg.) and fifth in assist/turnover ratio (1.30), along with 8.9 points per game, a .438 three-point percentage and a .923 free throw percentage. Furthermore, she was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll on Jan. 11 after a week that was highlighted by a career-high 22 points in a nationally-televised win at Purdue, one of eight double-digit scoring games this season for the Fighting Irish veteran.
For her career, Lechlitner ranks ninth in school history with 345 assists, and she is closing in on the program’s all-time Top 10 list in total games played (117; 10th place is 127) and minutes played (3,127; she’s one of three current players with more than 3,000 minutes, while 10th place entering this season was 3,279). A two-year team captain, she has helped lead Notre Dame to a 42-10 (.808) record since taking over as the starting point guard prior to last season.
Lechlitner was one of four BIG EAST players to receive academic all-district recognition on Thursday, joining Connecticut’s Maya Moore (first team in District I), West Virginia’s Liz Repella (first team in District II) and DePaul’s Felicia Chester (second team in District V).
Voting for the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District V Team was conducted by CoSIDA members in that district, which encompasses Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Wisconsin, as well as the Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Ontario. To qualify, student-athletes must hold at least sophomore status, own a minimum GPA of 3.3 or better, and be either a starter or key reserve for their team. Those student-athletes who earn first-team citations are eligible for Academic All-America honors as members of the national ballot.
The third-ranked Fighting Irish (20-1, 7-1 BIG EAST) return to the hardwood Saturday with a 2 p.m. (ET) conference matchup against Pittsburgh at Purcell Pavilion. A limited number of tickets for this game are still available by contacting the Murnane Ticket Office (574-631-7356; first floor of new Rosenthal Atrium on south side of arena; www.UND.com/tickets) or by visiting the ticket windows on the east side of Notre Dame Stadium on game day. In addition, Saturday’s game will be webcast live and free of charge on the official Notre Dame athletics web site, www.UND.com.
— ND —