Seventy-three University of Delaware student-athletes reached yet another impressive goal Saturday afternoon as they were among the nearly 3,500 UD students who were honored as part of the 164th Commencement exercises at Delaware Stadium.
“Congratulations to all of our Blue Hen student-athletes who were honored today,” said UD Director of Athletics Eric Ziady who was among the University administrative officers who took part in the ceremony. “We are deeply proud of each and every one of them for the commitment they showed throughout their careers here at Delaware, certainly to the athletics teams that they were a part of, but more importantly as students at this great institution. We celebrate with them today and wish them success in all their future endeavors.”
The event was held under sunny skies, but heavy winds blew throughout the two-hour ceremony that was held in front of a near capacity crowd of friends and families. The guest speaker was Dr. Paul Farmer, a medical anthropologist and physician who has dedicated his life to improving health care for the world's poorest people.
Twenty of Delaware’s 21 athletics teams were represented among the graduates, including 15 members of the Blue Hen football team and five members of the UD women’s basketball team that captured the Colonial Athletic Association. Many other UD student-athletes previously earned their degrees at Winter Commencement back in January.
The list of graduates included Andrew Burgess and Nick Ferdinand from baseball; Josh Brinkley and Will Townsville of men’s basketball; Lauren Carr, Elena Delle Donne, Trumae Lucas, and Danielle Parker from women’s basketball; Katie Deinert, Alexandra Finocchio, Kayla Koonz, Vicky Caruso, and Rachel Wasserman from women’s cross country and track & field; Nicole Onorato and Tory Sharpless from field hockey; Andrew Opoku, Matt Becker, Tim Breaker, Nick Cattolico, Derek Coleman, Walter Davis, Tim Donnelly, Jeff Haas, David Hayes, Mike Hirt, Mike Milburn, Alex Pihakis, Carl Smith, Paul Worrilow, and Rauley Zaragoza from football; Ben Conroy from men’s golf; Frida Nilsson from women’s golf; and Bethany Callaway, Ally Crossman, Sarah Slotoroff, and Alex Smart from rowing.