EMU's six members on the VaSID Academic All-State Team: (from left) Hannah Chappell-Dick, Tyler Denlinger, Jacob Landis, Mattie Lehman, Jess Rheinheimer and Andrew Yoder.

Six Royals athletes earn academic All-State status

Six EMU student-athletes have been named to the Academic All-State Team by the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID).  A total of 223 student-athletes representing 38 colleges and universities in the state were recognized.

Those honored from Eastern Mennonite University were:

Hannah Chappell-Dick (Bluffton, Ohio/Bluffton), Jr., Women’s Cross Country/Track & Field, Biology, 3.87 GPA.  Chappell-Dick, also a Capitol One Academic All-American, reaped the benefits of her first fully healthy season, heading to the national meet in both the indoor and outdoor track seasons.  The junior finished second at nationals in the indoor mile, and then added a bronze medal in the outdoor 1500m.  She claimed All-America status both times, becoming the first EMU track and field athlete to do so since 2007.  Chappell-Dick was the ODAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year for cross country, indoor track and outdoor track, and earned six All-ODAC First Team honors this year in the three sports. The South/Southeast Region’s coaches also voted her Region Athlete of the Year twice.

Tyler Denlinger (Perkasie, Pa./Christopher Dock), So., Men’s Cross Country/Track & Field, Biology/Pre-Med, 3.98 GPA.  Denlinger was a point-scorer for the men in the middle distances, taking third place at the ODAC Championships in both the indoor and outdoor 800m.  He earned the men’s ODAC Scholar-Athlete title for the indoor track season and was also Capitol One Academic All-District.

Jacob Landis (Sterling, Ill./Sterling), Sr., Men’s Cross Country, Congregational Ministry/Biblical Studies, 3.94 GPA.  Landis capped his collegiate career with a trip to the NCAA National Championships in cross country.  He earned All-ODAC and All-Region honors along the way and was also voted the ODAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year for cross country, to go with a spot on the Academic All-District Team.  Landis missed his final track season by studying in the Middle East during the spring semester.

Mattie Lehman (New Paris, Ind./Bethany Christian), Sr., Women’s Volleyball – Defensive Specialist, History, 3.98 GPA.  Lehman returned to the court this year after missing her junior campaign to study in Spain and Morocco.  She stepped into a role as a defensive specialist and racked up 178 digs, averaging 1.98 per set.  Lehman also had 17 service aces.

Jess Rheinheimer (Manheim, Pa./Lancaster Mennonite), Jr., Women’s Basketball – Forward, Nursing, 3.95 GPA.  Rheinheimer exploded in her first season as a full-time starter, averaging 20.0 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.5 steals and 0.9 blocks per game.  She was named the ODAC Player of the Year and Virginia State Player of the Year.  The versatile forward also landed on the All-South Region First Team and All-America Fourth Team.  Rheinheimer was the ODAC Scholar-Athlete for women’s basketball and became the second junior ever to win the Jostens Trophy, an award based on excellence on the court, in the classroom and in the community.

Andrew Yoder (Harrisonburg, Va./Eastern Mennonite), Sr., Men’s Soccer – Keeper, Accounting/Economics, 3.95 GPA.  Yoder joins Landis as a two-time Academic All-State honoree after completing one of his best statistical seasons on the pitch.  A three-year starter in goal, Yoder had a career best .795 save percentage, allowing 1.37 goals per game.  He was also the ODAC Scholar-Athlete for men’s soccer, the Royals grabbed a school-record seven such awards from the conference in 2014-15.

To earn VaSID Academic All-State honors, a student-athlete must have achieved at least a 3.25 grade point average and be at least a sophomore.  Each school in the state is allowed six nominees.

VaSID is comprised of sports information or athletics communications professionals from intercollegiate institutions throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Membership is open to any individual affiliated with one of the state’s institutions at the NCAA Division I, Division II, Division III, NAIA, USCAA and community college levels, provided that individual’s area of responsibility lies within the realm of sports information.