Dec. 1, 2011
TOWSON, Md. -- For the second year in-a-row, Missouri State senior forward Heath Melugin earned Academic All-America® honors, CoSIDA announced Thursday. However, this year he reached elite status as he was named to the Capital One Academic All-America® Men's Soccer Division I first team.
Melugin became the second MSU men's soccer player to earn first-team accolades. In 1995, Brad Barnes was awarded second-team honors and the following year was named to the Academic All-America® first team.
Melugin is the first Bears' student-athlete to receive first-team honors since the men's track & field duo of Michael Breshears and Travis Mack in 2006.
"It is a tremendous feat for Heath to be considered one of the top-11 student-athletes in the country for men's soccer," head coach Jon Leamy said. "Everyone involved with our program is so proud of him and he deserves every bit of the recognition."
Melugin, who boasts a 3.97 GPA in cell and molecular biology, was recently named to the MVC Scholar-Athlete first team for the third consecutive year. The senior from Springfield, Mo., was one of four unanimous first-team selections on the 11-member squad.
"He has done so well in all aspects of his life, whether it be academics, athletics or in the community," Leamy added.
This season, he became a three-time CoSIDA Academic All-District first team selection and was named Prairie Farms-MVC Student Athlete of the Week twice. The 2010 CoSIDA Academic All-America second team pick also earned MVC Offensive Player of the Week honors following his game-winning goal on the road at Drake in double overtime. His game-winner against the Bulldogs helped MSU capture a share of the MVC regular-season title and earn the No. 1 seed for the conference championship in Omaha, Neb.
At the conclusion of the State Farm MVC Men's Soccer Championship, Melugin was named to the All-Tournament Team and was also selected as the 2011 MVC Elite 18 Award winner, honoring the highest performer in both athletics and academics in the championship match. The 2011 All-MVC first team honoree led the Bears in points, goals, shots, shots on goal and game-winners this season. Melugin finished his career ranked fifth all-time at MSU in game-winners (8), seventh in goals (22) and eighth in points (53).
Melugin was one of four Missouri Valley Conference players to get the nod on the Academic All-America® first team. Joining him were Creighton's Brian Holt, Bradley's Bobby Smith and Drake's Matt Kuhn.
2011 Capital One Academic All-America® Men’s Division I Soccer First Team
GK - Brian Holt, Creighton
D - Chad Barson, Akron
D – Matt Horn, Winthrop
D – Bobby Smith, Bradley
D – Adam Still, SMU
M – Matt Kuhn, Drake
M – Sam Miller, Navy
M – Christopher Tweed-Kent, Duke
F – Heath Melugin, Missouri State
F – Brent Richards, Washington
F – Andrew Wenger, Duke