TOWSON, Md. – Junior Leah Taylor, an outfielder on The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team, was named to the Capital One Academic All-America first team.
Taylor, a junior marketing major with a 3.96 G.P.A., was the 2012 Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year. The Brownsville, Tenn. native led UT Martin to the OVC championship and a 39-22 record. She led the Skyhawks with a .385 batting average, 61 runs scored, 77 hits, 10 triples and 37 stolen bases. With 64 stolen bases, she ranks third in school history.
Taylor is one of nine players on the Capital One Academic All-America® first team that played in the NCAA Regionals last weekend. Seven of those players have helped their teams to advance to play in the NCAA Super Regionals this weekend.
In addition to Taylor, pitcher Hillary Bach, infielder Katelyn Boyd and designated player Bailey Wigness of Arizona State University, catcher Jenna Marston of the University of Missouri, infielder Raven Chavanne of the University of Tennessee, infielder Jennifer Colquhoun of Lehigh University, outfielder Kayla Braud of the University of Alabama and pitcher Ashley Brignac, of the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, participated in the 64-team championship.
Bach, Braud and Chavanne are repeat first team selections on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I softball team.
A graduate student in business management with a 3.71 G.P.A., Bach is one of three Arizona State student-athletes on the first team. Bach, Boyd and Wigness have led the third-ranked Sun Devils to a 49-8 record and a berth in the Super Regionals.
Bach is a second team All-Pacific-12 Conference selection and earned Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honors three times. Bach pitched the seventh perfect game in school history. She has posted a 20-1 record with a 1.62 E.R.A. that ranks third in Pac-12. The President of the ASU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, she has 10 shutouts.
A senior family and human development major with a 3.72 G.P.A, Boyd was a third team Capital One Academic All-America® selection last season. The Phoenix, Ariz., native is a two-time first team All-American and currently ranks in the top 20 nationally in eight statistical categories. Boyd is one of three finalists for both the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year and the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award. She enters the Super Regional with a .444 batting average, 72 runs scored, 15 doubles, 19 home runs and 61 runs batted in. She also has a .571 on-base percentage and has 21 stolen bases in 22 attempts.
Chavanne, a junior political science major with a 3.89 G.P.A., is a Capital One Academic All-America® first team selection as an infielder this season. She earned first team notice as an outfielder last year. A native of Thousand Oaks, Cal., she is a finalist for the USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year for the second year in a row. A two-time NFCA All-American (2010, 2011), she is Tennessee’s all-time leading hitter (.450). She also ranks third in career steals (102), seventh in runs scored (173) and eighth in base hits (260). The Vols’ third baseman and leadoff hitter has led No. 5 Tennessee to a 50-11 record and a berth in the NCAA Super Regionals. Currently batting .439, she has 84 career multi-hit games at Tennessee.
A junior public relations major with a 3.92 G.P.A., Braud is batting .351 for No. 2 Alabama, now 53-7 on the season. She helped the Crimson Tide reach the NCAA Super Regional for the fifth year in a row. Braud, is the third-leading hitter for the Crimson Tide and has scored 55 runs. She leads Alabama with 39 stolen bases in 44 attempts. She has earned All-American honors from the NFCA twice and was the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year in 2010.
A junior catcher for Missouri, Marston is an industrial engineering major with a 3.98 G.P.A. A native of St. Louis, Mo., Marston has led the ninth-ranked Tigers to a 46-12 record and their fifth-straight NCAA Regional title. A three-time All-Big 12 Conference selection, she is hitting .301 with six doubles, two triples and 15 RBI’s. She has walked 45 times, setting a single-season record at Missouri. In her first season as a catcher, she has a .992 fielding percentage.
The 2012 Patriot League Player of the Year, Colquhoun led Lehigh to a 40-19 record and its fifth league championship in seven years. A senior biochemistry major with a 3.77 G.P.A., she is a three-time All-Patriot League selection. Honored as the Patriot League Scholar-Athlete for softball three times, she batted .440 as a senior and led league in runs scored (50), triples (6), home runs (13) and RBI’s (48).
A speech and hearing science major with a 3.75 G.P.A., Alicia Herron of Ohio State University completes the infield on the Capital One Academic All-America® first team. A four-time All-Big Ten selection, she has been named all-region three times, including two first team selections. Herron led the Big Ten in slugging percentage (.800), on-base percentage (.569), runs (48), home runs (14) and walks (52).
Senior outfielder Mallory Duran-Sellers of Southern Illinois University, a second team selection last year, completes the Capital One Academic All-America Division I softball first team. An English education major with a perfect 4.00 G.P.A., she was the 2012 Player of the Year in the Missouri Valley Conference. A two-time NFCA All-Mideast Region pick, she set the MVC season record with 61 runs scored. A three-time All-MVC selection, she was named as the MVC’s 2012 Elite 18 award winner for softball.
The 11 members of the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I softball first team have an average G.P.A. of 3.88.
The second team consists of pitchers Ellen Renfroe of Tennessee and Chelsea Thomas of Missouri; catcher Kelsey Horton and outfielder Michelle Moultre of Florida; infielders Jackey Branham and Cassie Reilly-Boccia of Alabama, Chelsea Garcia of Oklahoma State University, and Stacie Toney of Brigham Young University; outfielders Ashley Fleming of Missouri, Annie Lockwood of Arizona State and designated player Jill Jelnick of East Carolina University.
Pitchers Jen Mineau of Fordham University and Stephanie Ricketts of the University of Hawai‘I top the third team. Catchers Holley Gentsch of Texas Tech University and Vicky Rumph of Youngstown State University join infielders Jane Alexander of Harvard University, Lexy Bennett of the University of Texas, Kaelene Curry of the University of Missouri-Kansas City and Coryn Schmit of the University of Illinois at Chicago on the third team. Outfielders Allie Cashion of Appalachian State University, Alex Helfrich of the University of Akron, and Maggie Hull of the University of Kansas round out the third team, along with designated player Colleen Schneider of Wright State University.
Pitcher Ashley Brignac, a graduate student at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, leads the 2012 Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Softball Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
An exercise science major with a perfect 4.0 Grade Point Average, Brignac is a repeat winner of the Academic All-America® of the Year award for Division I softball. A native of River Ridge, La., she is only the second student-athlete to be named as the American Academic All-America® of the Year for Division I softball. Lindsay Schutzler of Tennessee was named as the Academic All-America® of the Year in 2006 and 2007.
Brignac, a native of River Ridge, La., has maintained a 4.0 G.P.A. throughout her collegiate career and was ULL’s Most Outstanding Graduate last fall. She has led the Ragin’ Cajuns to a 52-4 record, a No. 7 national ranking and a NCAA regional championship. ULL faces Arizona State in the NCAA Super Regionals this weekend.
Brignac has compiled a 23-3 record this year and twice during her career has posted 30 wins in the circle (2008, 2011). She ranks second on the ULL career charts with strikeouts (853). She has compiled a 94-20 career record, ranking third in school history in victories. During her career, she has pitched 35 shutouts and seven no-hitters.
A three-time winner of the Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Year award (2012, 2011, 2008), she has been named second team all-region by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) three times (2012, 2011, 2008).