From the Zags:
SAN BRUNO, Calif. (June 10, 2014 – http://www.gozags.com) – Gonzaga University basketball standout Haiden Palmer has been named the 2014 West Coast Conference Female Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year, and women’s rowing coxswain Naseeb Bhangal has been named the female recipient of the 2014 West Coast Conference Postgraduate Scholarship.
The awards were announced at the recent WCC Honors dinner.
The Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year is selected by a vote of the WCC’s Executive Council to recognize the finest accomplishments in athletics, academics and community service by individuals who have completed their collegiate eligibility. The award is named in honor of the conference’s first full-time commissioner, Mike Gilleran.
To be eligible for a WCC Postgraduate Scholarship, a student-athlete must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.25, demonstrate significant athletic contributions to his or her sport for a minimum of two years, and have a record of participation in campus or community activities. He or she also must submit a personal statement of intention to attend graduate or professional school for which this scholarship would be awarded.
Palmer graduated from the Gonzaga’s Master’s program of Communication and Leadership with a 4.0 GPA, earning her a spot on the WCC All-Academic Team. One of the most accomplished women’s basketball players in WCC history, Palmer was named the 2011-12 WCC Newcomer of the Year and the 2013 WCC Most Outstanding Player at the WCC Women’s Basketball Championship.
The native of Moreno Valley, Calif., helped Gonzaga to three WCC regular-season titles, two WCC Tournament Championships and three NCAA Tournaments, reaching the Sweet 16 in 2012. Palmer also was recently selected in the WBNA Draft by the Indiana Fever, becoming the fifth player in program history to be drafted by the WNBA.
Bhangal, from Ridgefield, Wash., graduated with a 3.95 GPA in Political Science and Psychology and was named to the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association Scholar-Athlete Team. She participated in the 2013 NCAA Division I Rowing Championship, the inaugural appearance for the Bulldogs, and was a key contributor for her team all four years. This upcoming August, she will be attending Loyola University of Chicago in the Master’s of Education program.
Athletically, Bhangal earned four varsity letters, spending the final two seasons at Gonzaga as the coxswain of the Varsity 8. She helped the Bulldogs to the 2013 West Coast Conference Rowing Championship with a subsequent berth in the NCAA Championship. Gonzaga finished second in this year’s WCC Championship. Bhangal has served the community as a mentor in the Comprehensive Leadership Program and spent three years on the Student Athletic Advisory Committee.
Clarke Spinosa of the University of San Diego tennis team was named the Male Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year, graduating with a 3.1 GPA in Finance. He helped lead the Toreros to four NCAA Tournament berths and two WCC Championship titles.
Benjamin Demaree of Santa Clara cross country was named the male Postgraduate Scholarship recipient. He graduated with a 3.88 GPA in Bioengineering with a minor in Mechanical Engineering, served as team captain was named to the Dean’s list three times and was a two-time WCC All-Academic First Team selection as a sophomore and junior.