Two Holy Cross Cross Country athletes named National Merit Scholarship semifinalists
Holy Cross School is thrilled to announce that two of our Seniors, Gage Baldassaro and Wyatt Audler have achieved the distinction of National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists. We are so proud of Gage Baldassaro and Wyatt Audler’s success and merit scholarship semi-finalist distinction. This accolade puts them in a group of 16,000 students, less than 1% of high school seniors.
The National Merit Scholarship Program is an annual academic competition among high school students for recognition and college scholarships that began in 1955. The program is conducted by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC®). United States high school students enter the National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which serves as an initial screen of over 1.3 million entrants each year, and by meeting published program entry and participation requirements.
Gage Baldassaro ’24 started last year’s academic endeavors off by receiving perfect scores in two sub-sections of the ACT standardized test. In April he scored a perfect 36 composite score. This is an outstanding accomplishment and is especially impressive since Gage achieved this as a Junior. He is among .3% of test takers to achieve a perfect score. In addition to his academic achievements, Gage is a member of the Holy Cross Varsity Track team, Varsity Cross Country, National Honor Society, the Brother James McDonnell Scholars program, and he serves as a Holy Cross Ambassador. Gage previously attended Belle Chasse Primary School and enrolled here in 5th grade.
Similarly, Wyatt Audler ’24 also achieved an outstanding composite score of 35! This high score is only achieved by 0.925% of test takers. He achieved perfect scores on the Science, English, and Reading subsections of the test. His after-school commitments include being a member of the Holy Cross Varsity Track team, Varsity Cross Country, National Honor Society, Brother James McDonnell Scholars program, and he serves as a Holy Cross Ambassador. Wyatt began his academic career homeschooled and then enrolled with us in the 7th Grade. Audler is also an intern for Crescent City Sports, serving as a reporter covering local high school sports events.
When asked to comment on their accomplishments, Blake Badassaro cross-country coach said “I am proud of both, but more importantly, I am proud of the culture of academic excellence the Cross-Country team has established. They follow in the footsteps of 4 other National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists (Dominic Lincoln, Paine Espanane, Blake Baldassaro, Cade Martin). Their ability to apply themselves fully in both academics and athletics is incredibly difficult. The fact that they can excel in both is a testament to their discipline and work ethic. They are leaders in the classroom and among their teammates and are the best of what Holy Cross Cross Country has to offer.
We wish the boys the best of luck as they continue through the program as they both hope to be finalists and scholarship winners.
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