Four Redbirds Selected to MVC Scholar-Athlete Team
May 20, 2013
ST. LOUIS - A program-record four Illinois State softball players have earned Missouri Valley Conference Scholar-Athlete Team recognition, as announced by the league office Monday afternoon. Redshirt junior outfielder Nichelle Harrison and senior catcher Elizabeth Kay are first team selections, while junior pitcher Taylor Baxter and junior first baseman Laura Canopy earn honorable mention status.
All four players are making their first appearances on the list. Harrison sports a cumulative 3.91 GPA with an athletic training major. The Bloomington, Ill., native's academic accomplishments include the 2013 MVC Leadership and Service Award, two NFCA Scholar-Athlete selections, being named to the MVC Honor Roll three times, a Commissioner's Academic Excellence Award in 2011 and ISU honor roll selection all seven semesters. Athletically, Harrison was a 2013 All-MVC Second Team selection, as she ranked third on the Redbirds with a .340 batting average and did not commit an error all season.
Kay continues her impressive awards haul with the selection. The physical education major boasts a 3.48 GPA, and was a 2012 NFCA Scholar-Athlete selection, a two-time MVC Honor Roll choice and has been named to the ISU honor roll all seven semesters she has been at ISU. On the field, Kay excelled in 2013, being named MVC Player of the Year, NFCA First Team All-Mideast Region and an All-MVC First Team Choice.
Baxter, an elementary education major with a 3.52 GPA, was a 2012 NFCA Scholar-Athlete selection, in addition to earning two MVC Honor Roll and five ISU Honor Roll distinctions. The Hannibal, Mo., native was selected to the All-MVC Second Team after going 15-8 with a 3.15 ERA this season.
Canopy's 3.45 GPA as an accounting major earned her NFCA Scholar-Athlete recognition in 2012. The Hopedale, Ill., native is also a two-time MVC Honor Roll choice and has been named to the ISU honor roll all five semesters. Canopy joined Kay on the NFCA All-Mideast Region and All-MVC First Team.
In order to be eligible for the recognition, student-athletes must have a 3.2 GPA or higher, be at least a sophomore in athletic and academic standing have played in 75-percent of the team's games or participated in the MVC Softball Championship.
ISU went 28-20 overall last season, including a 13-7 mark in the Missouri Valley Conference. The Redbirds won three games against top-25 teams, but did not make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2009.
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