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Natalie Bitetti approaching the finish line at SCIACs (photo by Aaron Gray)
Natalie Bitetti approaching the finish line at SCIACs (photo by Aaron Gray)

Natalie Bitetti Earns Second-Team Academic All-America Honors

CLAREMONT, Calif. - Natalie Bitetti of the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's cross country and track and field teams earned second-team Academic All-America honors from the College Sports Communicators, the organization announced today.

The Academic All-America program recognizes student-athletes who combine athletic success with high academic achievement. Bitetti graduated from Claremont McKenna with over a 3.8 GPA as a human biology major, and had a decorated athletic career as a distance runner for the Athenas. 

In the fall this year, Bitetti finished second at the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships, matching the highest finish ever for any CMS or SCIAC runner (men or women). She earned All-America honors for the third time in her career, while helping CMS to a fourth-place team finish. As a sophomore, she was part of a runner-up team finish in 2022, the highest in program history. She also won the SCIAC individual title and was the league's Athlete of the Year for the second straight year, as well as the USTFCCCA West Region Athlete of the Year. 

In the winter, Bitetti added a second runner-up finish to her resume, coming in second place in the 3000 meters at the NCAA Division III Indoor Track and Field Championships. She was also part of a distance medley relay that came in second, earning All-America honors as both an individual and on a relay. 

Bitetti capped off her senior season with a ninth-place finish in the 5000 meters at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships, earning second-team All-America honors. 

Four members of the Athenas earned a spot on the Academic All-District team, with Angie Gushue, Elle Marsyla and Laura Zimmer also earning the accolades. All four were on the cross country team that finished fourth at nationals, with Zimmer joining Bitetti on the All-America distance medley team in the winter, and Zimmer (1500 meters) and Marsyla (10000 meters) earning second-team All-America honors in the spring. 

Bitetti becomes the ninth CMS student-athlete to earn Academic All-America honors this season. Georgia McGovern (first team) earned it in the fall with the volleyball team, and Josh Angle (first team, men's basketball) and Frank Applebaum (second team, men's swimming and diving) were honored in the winter. In the spring, four tennis players captured the honor, with Advik Mareedu (first team) and Ian Freer (third team) earning it for the Stags, and Lindsay Eisenman (second team) and Alisha Chulani (second team) taking it for the Athenas, while Julian Sanders (second team) was honored for the second year in a row.