November 10, 2011

Three Bears Earn A-Sun Conference Cross Country Academic Awards


Macon, Ga. – Mercer University had three members of its cross country program named to the Atlantic Sun Conference’s inaugural Academic All-Conference Team, it was announced by the league office on Thursday. The trio includes men’s squad member Jacob Law, along with women’s teammates Christina Kivi and Kacie Niemann.


Recognized from the Bears’ men’s team was Law, a junior, who has a 3.89 grade point average in mechanical engineering.


Law, a native of Crestwood, Ky., was a scoring runner for the Bears in each meet in 2011 and was also a member of Mercer’s USTFCCCA 2010 NCAA Division I All-Academic Team a year ago. He ran a personal best eight kilometer time of 25:49.30 at the Royal XC Challenge (19th overall) on October 14. He has twice been a member of the A-Sun All-Scholastic Team and was a second team All-A-Sun finisher and All-Freshman Team member in 2009.  He owns the No. 6 best time in the 8K and No. 2 time for 10K races in Mercer school history.


Law has been recognized on Mercer’s President’s and Dean’s List each term and is a Presidential Scholar.  He is also the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee representative for the men’s cross country program. He volunteers as a church Sunday School teacher, as well. 


Kivi is a senior art major (English minor) who psorts a perfect 4.0 g.p.a.  Kivi has been named to the President’s List every term and is a member of the Mercer Honors Program (2008-present), Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society (Spring 2009-present), Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society (Spring 2011-present), Order of Omega Greek Honor Society (2010-present) and is currently Alpha Delta Pi sorority president.


Kivi works also works with Mercer Ambassadors.  Her extensive volunteer work includes: Ronald McDonald House philanthropy events (2008-present), Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (2008, 2009, 2010), Salvation Army Bell Ringing (2008, 2009, 2010), First Baptist Church of Macon Monthly Babysitting (2008-2010), After-school Environmental Education at L.H. Williams Elementary School in Macon, (2009), Bizarre Bazaar for the Crossroads Writer’s Conference, Macon (2011) and LEAP Service Days at Mercer (2011).


Kivi was a scoring runner for the Bears in every meet this season and a team co-captain. The Valdosta, Ga. native has three A-Sun All-Scholastic Team awards to her credit and was a member of Mercer’s USTFCCCA 2010 NCAA Division I All-Academic Team.


Niemann, also from Crestwood, Ky., is a junior majoring in biology with a chemistry minor. She carries a 3.97 g.p.a.


Niemann was an A-Sun second team all-conference finisher in 2011, as well as in 2009. She was an A-Sun All-Freshman Team finisher in 2009, as well. Niemann owns the MU school records in both 5K and 6K races. She has seven of the top-10 Mercer 5K times in school history.


In her career, Niemann has been the MU team’s top finisher in 16 of 17 races.  She is a cross country team co-captain.


In the classroom, Niemann has been named to the A-Sun All-Scholastic Team twice (2010, 2009), was a member of Mercer’s USTFCCCA 2010 NCAA Division I All-Academic Team and a three-time Mercer President & Dean’s List honoree. She has twice earned the President’s Scholastic Award (2009, 2010). Her academic honors include Organic Chemistry Student Award (2011), an invitation to Alpha Epsilon Delta, pre-medical Honor Society (2010), an invitation to Phi Eta Sigma academic Honor Society (2010) and recipient of the Citi Group Academic Scholarship (2009).


Niemann currently serves as the women’s cross country representative and SAAC secretary. Her long list of volunteer/community work includes: Younglife Leader, second grade Sunday School teacher, AWANA volunteer, and working in the Special Events Team at Mercer. She also is involved in Coaches vs Cancer, Toys for Tots, Salvation Army, Medical Assistant at First Stop Urgent Care (Ky.), Women's Specialty Care (Ga.) and BCM mission trips to Mexico, Honduras, and Haiti.


The A-Sun introduced the new sport-by-sport Academic All-Conference teams this fall to recognize student-athletes who embody the conference’s mission of Building Winners for Life. All the members of the team boast a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (GPA) or better and participated in at least half of their team’s matches.