Another chapter in the illustrious career of senior defender Rebecca Russo (South Windsor, Conn./South Windsor) of The University of Scranton women's soccer team was etched on Tuesday, as she was named to the 2019 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-America® Third Team for her sport in NCAA Division III.
Russo, who is the 38th Academic All-American in University of Scranton athletics history, is the fourth women's soccer player to earn the award from CoSIDA all-time, joining Nicole Bayman (2001), Emily Farrell (2012), and Erin Casey (2016).
The 2019 Landmark Conference's Senior Scholar Athlete for women's soccer and a three-time CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team pick, Russo has registered a 3.89 GPA as a Nursing major at Scranton.
On the pitch, Russo led the Royals to incredible heights in her four-year career, helping the program win three Landmark Conference titles (2016, 2017, 2019), earn bids to four NCAA Division III Championships and advance to the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament three years in a row (2017 through 2019). The Royals also posted a 59-12-12 overall mark and a 26-2 ledger in Landmark Conference play in the four seasons Russo was on-campus, as she served as team captain in each of the last two years.
In 2019, Russo once again led a strong Scranton defense on their way to the Landmark Conference title, as the Royals won the championship as the number three seed knocking off Elizabethtown (3-2) and Susquehanna (3-0) in the postseason to avenge a pair of losses in the regular season (ironically, the only two such Landmark Conference regular season losses in Russo's career at Scranton).
On the year, Scranton blanked nine opponents, including Ohio Northern in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament to send the game to penalty kicks. Allowing under a goal a game (0.85), Russo also helped out the Royals in key spots throughout the year on offense. In all, she scored four goals and had an assist for a nine-point season total, her highest in a season in her career.
Two of Russo's goals came in critical moments. The first, in double overtime against Catholic on Sept. 28, lifting Scranton to a 1-0 win. The second, on a successful penalty kick in the Landmark title match at Susquehanna on Nov. 9 that gave Scranton an insurmountable 2-0 lead in the second half. Russo also nailed her penalty kick chance against Centre in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament in which Scranton would advance from by a 5-4 margin.
For her career, she finishes with nine goals and one assist.
For more on the CoSIDA Academic All-America program, click here: https://academicallamerica.com/