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Ross Named ECAC Hockey Student-Athlete of the Year

ALBANY, N.Y. -- ECAC Hockey recently announced that Keir Ross of Cornell has been named the 2011-12 Men’s Student-Athlete of the Year selected for the honor by the league’s Awards Committee. The sixth recipient of the award, which recognizes academic achievement, as well as accomplishments on and off of the ice of ECAC Hockey student-athletes, Ross was one of 12 fellow nominees for the honor.    

Ross has excelled in high levels during his career at Cornell both in the classroom and on the ice. The McKinney, Texas native showcased his leadership within the athletic department on the ice being named the team’s second solo captain in the last five years as, as well as in the academic honor societies.  

With a demanding academic schedule, which included research for the Cornell Veterinary College and a senior thesis for Cornell’s Nutrition Department Ross demonstrated that he could balance the rigors of both playing hockey and going to school at an institutional power such as Cornell.  Ross earned a 3.96 grade-point-average the 2001-12 academic year while satisfying his requirements in upper-level courses in research and pre-med to fulfill obligations for a degree in Human Biology, Health, and Society.

“Keir Ross is an exceptional young man,” remarked Big Red head coach Mike Schafer. “He is a great example of what sets ECAC Hockey apart from others. He was a compelled student-athlete on the ice and carried that same drive for excellence in the classroom. To undertake a challenging pre-med curriculum and commit to research at the same time along while serving as a captain is an unbelievable workload,” noted Schafer. “He not only carried out these tasks, but excelled in all fields as well as became involved in various community projects which was truly astonishing.”
 
In the classroom Ross was a College of Human Ecology Dean's List member where he authored a paper on the studying of assessing the utility of a laser scanning imaging technique called multiphoton microscopy to diagnose cartilage damage. Ross was named a finalist for the prestigious Lowes Senior CLASS award, which celebrates the loyalty of seniors that honor a four-year commitment to their university. He was also a three-time ECAC Hockey All-Academic team member and won Cornell’s Hockey Scholar Athlete Award.   

During his senior season, Ross helped lead the Big Red to a second-place finish in the ECAC Hockey standings and a third-place tournament finish, which earned Cornell a trip to the NCAA tournament. He was one of the top defensive presences on the team, particularly as a key cog on the penalty-kill. Ross was penalized least of any defenseman on the team despite being frequently matched up against some of the opposition’s best forward combinations.

The four-time letterwinner was an invaluable versatile part of the team on the ice, skilled at blocking shots and excelling as a stay-at-home defenseman while occasionally filling in as a center - an unnatural position for him. Ross was also involved in several community service projects with not only the Big Red ice hockey team, but with other organizations on campus and within the community such as the Cornell Teddy Bear Toss and the Feed My Starving Children program.

Other nominees for the award were Alex Angers-Goulet, Rensselaer, Jack Berger, Princeton, Charles Brockett, Yale, Yuri Bouharevich, Quinnipiac, Troy Grosenick, Union, Doug Jones, Dartmouth, Eric Kroshus, Harvard, Jack Maclellan, Brown, Mark Nasca, Colgate, Patrick Raley, St. Lawrence, and Matt Zarbo, Clarkson.