Eleven different Appalachian State softball student-athletes were named National Fastpitch Coaches Association Scholar-Athletes, the organization announced on Tuesday.
Recognition from the NFCA requires that student-athletes post a grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Following the hard work in the classroom as well as on the diamond this past spring semester, App State extended its streak of having a double-digit number of players named to the NFCA’s academic list.
A mix of successes between academics and athletics sparked a memorable year for the Mountaineers. The Mountaineers compiled a record 29-26 and only dropped six home games all season. Fifth-year head coach Shelly Hoerner led App State to its fourth consecutive winning season. It was a year that featured a series win at Texas State to open conference play as well as a series-opening victory over Louisiana, the program’s first-ever win over the Ragin’ Cajuns.
Baylee Morton, the only player on the team that has been at App State for the entirety of Hoerner’s tenure, posted a team-high 4.0 GPA. The recent graduate started every game of the 2022 season and tallied 32 hits to accompany 25 runs batted in and 25 runs scored in. The Monroe, N.C. native also added a career-best 271 putouts from behind the plate this season.
Academic recognition is nothing new to the Mountaineers. Morton was one of six players that garnered honors from the NFCA after doing so in 2021. All-Sun Belt selections Kayt Houston and Mary Pierce Barnes were also tabbed as NFCA Scholar-Athletes as well as Claire Carson, Emma Jones and Taylor Thorp.
2022 NFCA Scholar-Athletes
Mary Pierce Barnes