Three St. Thomas University Tommies were honoured as Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association Academic All-Canadians for 2016-17.
Marc and Stephane Blinn, of the men's volleyball team, and Carissa McTague, of the women's basketball team, earned the award, which the CCAA dubs their "most prestigious student athlete honour."
The Blinns, of Nasonworth, NB, have had a storied career with the Tommies, winning three consecutive Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association men's volleyball titles and making history at the 2014 CCAA championships as the first STU team to advance to the national semifinals. Those team achievements were complemented by individual accolades, including being named ACAA all-stars and conference Players of the Year—Marc in 2016 and Stephane in 2017.
Both Marc and Stephane agree competing as a Tommie benefitted them in the classroom.
"Sports have taught me so many skills, like how to prioritize school and homework with time management and to never give up when times get tough," Marc said.
"Working with a team provided me with the experience to see other's perspectives, which I applied at school. This made for a better learning environment and learning opportunities," Stephane added.
McTague is no stranger when it comes to success as a Tommie either. In her five-year career, she's captured two ACAA titles and a CCAA silver medal. This season, the Tommies' captain earned a second team all-star selection for her 11 points, nine rebounds, and two assists per game performance.
The Rothesay, NB, native said the things that help make you a good athlete also help make you a good student.
"In my five years as a Tommie, I've learned a lot on and off the court," she said. "I think being a competitive athlete forces you to be disciplined, prioritize, and manage your time, and all of those things are important to being a good student as well."
Including McTague and the Blinns, the Tommies now have 50 CCAA Academic All-Canadians since 2001-02.