Easterbrook keeps both eyes on the ball

All-RMAC and All-American wins RMAC Summit Award

Focused on the basketball court, Fort Lewis College senior guard Alex Easterbrook keeps both eyes on her academics, too. The All-RMAC Third Team player on the court is an All-America Academic Third Team student-athlete, and she won the inaugural RMAC Summit Award on Thursday as the conference’s most outstanding student-athlete at the RMAC Shootout. Enlarge photo

Jerry McBride/Durango Herald file photo

Focused on the basketball court, Fort Lewis College senior guard Alex Easterbrook keeps both eyes on her academics, too. The All-RMAC Third Team player on the court is an All-America Academic Third Team student-athlete, and she won the inaugural RMAC Summit Award on Thursday as the conference’s most outstanding student-athlete at the RMAC Shootout.

Both the Fort Lewis College men’s and women’s basketball programs long have hung their recruiting hats on basketball IQ.

Alex Easterbrook has delivered on that promise in more ways than one.

The Skyhawks’ starting guard won the inaugural Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Summit Award as the top female student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the RMAC tournament championships.

Nicholas Kay, a sophomore center with a 4.0 GPA in biology at Metro State, won the men’s RMAC Summit Award.

The award is issued to sophomores and above who have participated in their sport at least two years with their school. They must be an active member of the team, competing at the RMAC Shootout.

Easterbrook certainly qualifies. The Scottsdale, Ariz., native was named All-RMAC Third Team on Wednesday. The combo guard leads the conference in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.7) and ranks in the top 10 in assists (third, 101), steals (fourth, 58) and 3-pointers (10th, 48).

Off the court, Easterbrook has a 4.0 GPA in psychology, and the two-time All-RMAC Academic honor roll member has accrued a long list of academic accolades her senior season:

Capital One Academic All-America Third Team.

Capital One Academic All-District 6

RMAC All-Academic First Team.

The All-America academia selection was the first in FLC women’s basketball history and the ninth in FLC school history.

The RMAC Summit Award honor is the second this season for FLC; men’s cross country runner Zach Chenoweth won the award in the fall.

“We’re very proud of Alex for all that she has accomplished,” first-year head coach Jason Flores said in a news release to The Durango Herald. “Being named to the third team all-conference as a player and as an Academic All-American and now this award just proves what a great person and a great player she is.”

Easterbrook’s accomplishments follow a long line of on- and off-the-court success by the FLC women’s basketball program. During her four years with the program, FLC has won one RMAC regular-season championship and a pair of RMAC Shootouts; has been to three NCAA Tournaments, including one national runner-up finish; and the Skyhawks have maintained a top-25 team GPA in Division II women’s basketball all three years.

“She’s a hard act to follow,” Flores said. “She’s perfect in the classroom and works really hard on the court. That’s something that anyone can learn from.”

Easterbrook will lead fourth-seeded FLC (18-9) against fourth-ranked and top-seeded Colorado Mesa (26-1) in an RMAC Shootout semifinal at 7:30 p.m. today in Grand Junction.

The third-seeded Skyhawks’ men’s basketball team (20-6) will play No. 2 Adams State (20-7) at 5 p.m. today in Denver.

Kay’s fourth-ranked (nationally) and top-seeded Metro State Roadrunners are hosting the men’s RMAC Shootout.

heraldsports@durangoherald.com