WORCESTER -- A trio of WPI student-athletes were recently selected to the Academic All-District I At-Large team, as voted upon by College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) members from Massachusetts and Maine. Field Hockey junior Nini Acquista (Longmeadow, MA) and Women's Swimming and Diving senior Katherine Pawlak (Westford, MA) were tabbed to the women's team while Men's Swimming and Diving junior Kyle Staubi (Red Hook, NY) was selected to the men's team.
Acquista clocked in for 938:19 in the cage this season for the Crimson and Gray as the starting goalkeeper. Within that time, the junior logged a total of four shutouts and combined on three more, totaling seven, for the second-highest amount by an Engineer squad in the last 15 years. An All-NEWMAC second team selection, Acquista shared the top save percentage in the NEWMAC at .807, marking the highest in one season in recent-program history. The goalkeeper finished the 2021 season ranking third with 23 goals against and a goals-against average at 1.47.
Acquista sports a 3.90 GPA while pursuing a degree in computer science. The junior completed her IQP project this spring in Morocco and is member of Chi Omega women's fraternity and part of a non-profit student-run business that sells Gompei's Goat Cheese. Acquista is a two-time Academic All-NEWMAC honoree whose Humanities and Arts Component is music.
Pawlak became WPI's first-ever women's swimmer to participate in the NCAA Championships when she competed this March in the 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle and 100 butterfly. The senior was the first woman in program history to capture multiple conference championships as she struck gold in the 50 and 100-yard freestyles at the NEWMAC Championships this past February. Pawlak set multiple school records during senior season, including 50-freestyle mark four times in one day at the NEWMAC meet.
Pawlak graduated this month with a perfect 4.00 GPA and a degree in mechanical engineering. Her IQP project in A term of 2020 was titled "An Analysis of Centro de Acopio de Reciclables in Ciudad del Saber, Panama". Pawlak was a three-time NEWMAC All-Academic selection and a NEWMAC Track and Field champion, who will be competing this weekend in the NCAA Championships.
Staubi reached the NEWMAC championship finals in three events including the 200 backstroke (8th place - 1:55.16), 100 butterfly (8th place - 49.81), 200 butterfly (10th place - 1:56.37) this past February.
Staubi sports a perfect 4.00 GPA and completed his IQP Project in Moscow this past spring. The junior is majoring in biomedical engineering while pursuing a minor in electrical and computer engineering. Staubi is a member of the Stage Band and Jazz Ensemble and Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. A two-time NEWMAC All-Academic honoree whose Humanities and Arts Component is music.
The women's at-large category consists of beach volleyball, bowling, crew/rowing, fencing, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, rifle, skiing, swimming and diving, tennis and water polo. The men's at-large category comprises student-athletes from fencing, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, rifle, skiing, swimming and diving, tennis, volleyball, water polo and wrestling.
The trio now advances to the national ballot for Academic All-America consideration.