Ava Stearns named NCEA Flat Rider of the Year


AUBURN, Ala. – Fifth year Ava Stearns of the Auburn equestrian team was named the 2024 National Collegiate Equestrian Association's Flat Rider of the Year, the NCEA announced Tuesday.
The national honor is the second of her career and the fourth in program history as Stearns was named NCEA Flat Rider of the Year in 2022. She's also the program's second two-time winner of the award as former Tiger Taylor St. Jacques was named Flat Rider of the Year in 2019 and 2020.
The Chilmark, Massachusetts product put an exclamation on a successful career this year, going 10-3-0 in Flat with two Most Outstanding Performer honors. She earned First Team All-America honors in the event and was placed on the All-SEC team for her efforts.
Stearns helped the Tigers win the program's sixth-straight Southeastern Conference crown in March, going 2-0-0 at the conference meet. That included a 92.3 in the championship match vs. Texas A&M that was a part of an Auburn sweep in Flat.
Stearns went 4-2-0 in Flat vs. SEC opponents in the regular season. She was also 5-1-0 in Flat in road matches.
She finished her career with 46 Flat wins while on the Plains, ranking tied for third in program history. She earned six scores of 90 or higher over five seasons with Auburn, including a 95 that ranks among the program's best.