Franklin College senior Anna Murdock has been one of NCAA Division III’s top distance runners throughout her career.

As evidenced by her most recent honor, she also is among its top scholar-athletes.

A four-year standout for the Grizzlies, Murdock has been named to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic All-American team.

In addition, the Franklin’s women’s cross-country team has been named an All-Academic team by the same organization.

“This program has a heritage of producing all-academic teams, and having one of our runners featured as an Academic All-American is even better,” Franklin cross-country coach Paul Sargen said. “I’m very proud to see that heritage continue with our 2014 team of quality student-athletes.”

For the 2014 fall semester, the Franklin cross-country team maintained a 3.23 cumulative grade-point average. The academic award standard is a 3.10 or higher GPA, so the Grizzlies were well north of that.

Murdock, an Indian Creek High School graduate, earned All-American for having a cumulative GPA of at least 3.3 and having placed among the top 25 percent of finishers at the NCAA Division III regional meet.

An international business major, Murdock was the 2014 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference individual champion.

In track and field, Murdock was the HCAC’s Female Outdoor Most Outstanding Track Athlete in 2013 and 2014, and qualified for the NCAA Division III outdoor national championships in each of the past two seasons.

On the watch list

The first-year Franklin College women’s lacrosse team has yet to play a match, but already the Grizzlies are drawing notice.

Four players have been selected to the Ohio River Lacrosse Conference’s preseason coaches’ Watch List. They are junior midfielder Paige Clark, junior defenders Emily Erlenbaugh and Megan Rhotan, and freshman defender Morgan McIntosh.

Coaches selected Franklin to finish in ninth place in the preseason poll.

In its inaugural season, the Ohio River Lacrosse Conference is comprised of five Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference schools and five schools from the Presidents’ Athletic Conference.

The Grizzlies, who have played at the club level the past two seasons, open the 2015 season at Transylvania University on March 4. They play their home-opener March 15 against St. Vincent College.

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Rick Morwick is sports editor of the Daily Journal. He can be reached at or 317-736-2715.