Christopher Newport sophomore Carson Pokorny and Frostburg State senior Melanie Bell have been named to the 2017 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) / Capital One Academic All-America team, announced by the organization on Tuesday. Pokorny was named to the second team, while Bell secured third-team accolades.
Pokorny and Bell become the 102nd and 103rd CAC student-athletes to earn Academic All-America honors. Pokorny is the second CNU student-athlete to earn the distinction since the Captains joined the conference in 2013-14, while Bell's honor is the 13th for Frostburg State throughout the Bobcats time in the CAC. Bell is the third FSU women's soccer player to receive the award, joining former standouts Adria Graham and Stephanie Fazenbaker, who both earned the award multiple times throughout their careers.
CoSIDA began the Academic All-America program in 1952, and since then, has honored thousands of deserving student-athletes from numerous sports across all divisions with these elite Academic All-America scholar-athlete honors. To be eligible for the COSIDA Academic All-America and All-District programs, a student-athlete must be a starter or significant reserve with at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average.
Pokorny becomes the fifth student-athlete in CNU history to earn the esteemed honor, and the first since 2014. Pokorny put together an exceptional campaign on the pitch in her second year to pair with her perfect 4.0 cumulative grade-point average in the classroom. The Biochemistry major was one of only 13 Academic All-Americans with a perfect 4.0 GPA and helped bolster the average GPA on the three All-American squads to 3.94. She is also one of only four sophomores listed among this year's honorees and the only underclassman honored as a forward.
On the field, Pokorny tied the program record for assists in a season with 13 and ranked third on the team in scoring with a 25-point campaign. She led the Capital Athletic Conference and ranked 16th nationally in total assists during her second year in a Captains' uniform. She also tied the program record for assists in a single game when she notched four in a 7-0 win against Marymount in the regular season finale. In addition to her 13 helpers, the Williamsburg, Va. native scored six goals and put away a pair of game-winning strikes.
She played in all 21 and started 20 games while helping lead the Captains' record-breaking season as a team. The squad set program records for goals (77) and points (212) in a season and ranked 11th nationally in scoring offense with 3.67 goals per game. Along the way, Christopher Newport set the program records for wins in a season (19), fewest losses (1), winning percentage (.929), and longest unbeaten streak (20 games). Pokorny was at the forefront of that success as a first team All-Conference selection in 2017.
Following just her second season at CNU, Pokorny is already climbing high on the all-time charts in women's soccer history. The forward ranks third in career assists with 21 and moved into the Top 20 all-time in career points with 43.
Bell carries a perfect 4.00 GPA and majors in law & society. She has been named to the Dean's List in each of her six completed semesters at Frostburg since arriving on campus prior to the 2014 season. A three-time CAC All-Academic award winner, Bell was named a CoSIDA All-Academic District II First Team selection in early November.
Bell has been a four-year starter for the Bobcats and capped her career by being named to the All-CAC First Team for the third-straight year following the '17 regular season.
This fall, she helped Frostburg to 10 wins and appearances in both the CAC and ECAC Tournaments. Bell guided FSU to the CAC Championship game for the second-straight season prior to the ECAC Tournament.
Throughout her career, Bell helped lead the Bobcats to 43 wins, including 25 in the CAC with four appearances in the CAC Tournament. She started 62 games and appeared in 77, while scoring 15 goals with four assists (34 pts.). Bell also notched six games-winners, while Frostburg posted 30 shutouts during her tenure.
Bell is the seventh women's soccer player in the 24-year history of the program to earn Academic All-America honors and she is Frostburg's 12th overall honoree across all sports.