LOUISVILLE, Ky. –Thirty-two student-athletes from 15 schools in three-member regions have garnered 2019 NFCA National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division II All-America Team recognition, the Association revealed on Thursday morning.
Additionally, Shelby Hulsebus of Kirkwood Community College was selected the New Balance/NFCA NJCAA DII Golden Shoe Award recipient, while Northeast Mississippi Community College's Lizzy Van Manen took home the Diamond Sports/NFCA NJCAA DII Catcher of the Year honor.
Des Moines Area Community College and Louisburg College led the way with four honorees each. DMACC topped the charts with three first-teamers. National runner-up Phoenix College, Kirkwood and Itawamba Community College each had three selections.
Four student-athletes – Phoenix's Haley Johnston, County College of Morris' Katlyn Lloyd, DMACC's Mia Ruther and Iowa Central Community College's Cheyenne Andersen – pick up their second NFCA All-America nods, including Johnston and Lloyd earning back-to-back first-team recognition.
Johnston (.458, 14 2B, 15 HR, 63 RBI, 52 R, .825 SLG) and Ruther (.580, 112 H, 10 2B, 88 R, .616 OBP, 46 SB, .963 FLD) headline the NFCA's All-America infield. Ruther topped all of NJCAA DII in hits and runs and was second in batting average and third in on-base percentage. Joining the duo as first-team infielders are Louisburg's Haleigh Joyner (.490, 21 2B, 17 HR, 65 RBI, 59 R, .987 SLG), NJCAA DII's top slugger Jones County Junior College's LP Trammell (.429, 18 2B, 21 HR, 62 RBI, 71 R, 1.036 SLG) and NJCAA DII's home run champion, Kirkwood's London Jackson (.414, 26 HR, 72 RBI, 65 R, .956 SLG).
Lloyd (.476, 18 HR, 56 RBI, 79 R, .922 SLG) and Andersen (.411, 13 2B, 24 HR, 68 RBI, 76 R, 20 SB) are half of the four first-team outfield honorees. Also in the mix are the Golden Shoe recipient Hulsebus (.441, 9 2B, 82 H, 62 R) and Cowley County Community College's Ashton Friend (.473, 19 2B, 13 HR, 52 RBI, .521 OBP). Hulsebus swiped 58 bases in 60 attempts, seven more than her nearest competitor.
The first-team pitching trio consists DMACC's Josie Swafford (28-3, 1.37 ERA, 261 K, 193.2 IP, .164 opp. BA), NJCAA DII's strikeout leader, Phoenix's Brianna Hardy (32-2, 1.25 ERA, 371 K, 207 IP, .135 opp. BA) and DII's ERA champion Jensen Howell (21-3, 1.03 ERA, 163 K, 142.2 IP, .200 opp. BA) of the 2019 national champions LSU-Eunice Bengals. Hardy and Swafford ranked third and fifth nationally in ERA.
Van Manen, the Diamond Sports/NFCA Catcher of the Year, batted .462 with 17 doubles, 13 home runs, 48 RBI, 47 runs scored and a .510 on-base percentage. Joining her as a NFCA All-America catcher is Pitt Community College's Kelsey Peedin. She hit .474 with seven doubles, 23 RBI, 28 runs scored, 25 walks and a .631 on-base percentage, which was second-best nationally.
Rounding out this year's All-Americans is designated player Ally Pickering (.396, 15 2B, 55 RBI, 49 R, 10 SB) of DMACC and utility selection Shelby Martin (.445, 16 2B, 10 HR, 48 RBI, .500 OBP / 17-2, 2.56 ERA, 140 K, 125.2 IP) of Dawson Community College.