Feb. 9, 2012
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Notre Dame women’s tennis player Shannon Mathews (Birmingham, Mich.) and men’s soccer player Adam Mena (Holland, Mich.) have been named winners of the 2011-12 American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Institutional Scholar-Athlete Scholarships.
The American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Male and Female Scholar-Athletes of the Year are presented annually. In addition, the league awards one male and one female from each member school with the American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Institutional Scholar-Athlete Scholarships.
Mathews, a three time all-BIG EAST selection and 2011 BIG EAST Tournament Most Outstanding Performer, currently owns an 82-29 singles mark and an 89-30 doubles record. The senior co-captain has spent each of the past three seasons playing at either No. 1 or 2 singles, while pairing with fellow senior Kristy Frilling at No. 1 doubles each of the past two seasons and putting together a 23-6 record as a pairing. Over her four years, Mathews has reached as high as 32nd in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) singles polls, while peaking at 5th in the doubles standings.
Additionally, Mathews has been part of three consecutive BIG EAST championship teams dating back to ’09, while also helping the Irish reach the NCAA Team Championship semifinals in ’09 and ’10 and individually qualifying for the ’11 NCAA Singles and Doubles Championship.
Off the courts, Mathews has been named to the BIG EAST Academic All-Star Team and ITA Scholar-Athlete Award on three occasions. She carries a 3.483 cumulative grade-point average while pursuing a B.B.A. (Bachelors of Business Administration) in finance from Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business.
Mathews has been a key contributor to the Rosenthal Leadership Academy, taking part in the program beginning in her sophomore year and now serving as a 360 Leader. A member of the Notre Dame Student-Athlete Emerging Leaders Committee member, Mathews has participated in several community service events including the Pediatric Christmas Party, the Aidan Project and serving as a volunteer at the Special Olympics.
Mena, a midfielder, notched 11 points on three goals and a team-high five assists this past season. All of those offensive figures were career-best marks for Mena. He was named to the College Soccer News national team of the week and to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll on Sept. 19 after tallying a combined five points on two goals and an assist in wins over Michigan and Michigan State. He has 17 career points on six goals and five assists in 54 games played and has earned three monograms with the Irish. Mena has not missed a match in the past two seasons.
He boasts a 3.711 cumulative grade-point average as a psychology major in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters. He has been named to the dean’s list three times in addition to receiving the 2010 Notre Dame Club of St. Joseph Valley Knute Rockne Student-Athlete Award. Mena is a two-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star and was named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Scholar all-region second team in 2010 and 2011.
Mena also has been heavily involved in the South Bend/Notre Dame community. He has participated in Notre Dame’s Pediatric Christmas Party and has volunteered for other campus events such as the Play for Peace soccer camp and the Holy Half Marathon. Mena also is a member of the Rosenthal Leadership Academy.
The American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete of the Year award is one of a number of scholarships presented by the BIG EAST Conference and American Eagle Outfitters during the 2011-12 academic year. The conference also names male and female American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Basketball Scholar-Athletes of the Year and an American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Football Scholar-Athlete of the Year.