LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Ten student-athletes remain in the running for the 2022 Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year award, the Association revealed on Thursday afternoon. The winner will be announced on Tuesday, May 31 prior to the start of the 2022 NCAA Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City.
The Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year award was created in 2014 to honor outstanding athletic achievement among Division I freshmen softball student-athletes. To be eligible, student-athletes must be nominated by their member head coach and in their first year of NCAA Division I collegiate competition as a true freshman or redshirt freshman.
This year’s finalists hail from 10 different universities and represent eight NCAA Division I conferences from across the nation.
The Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) led the way with three honorees. The Big 12 Conference, Big West Conference, Conference USA, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, Mountain West Conference, Pac-12 Conference and Southeastern Conference each had one selection.
At the time of the release, Oklahoma’s Jordy Bahl (Big 12), UMES’s Tatum Kresley (MEAC), Virginia Tech’s Emma Lemley (ACC), Louisiana Tech’s Sierra Sacco (Conference USA) and Arizona State’s Cydney Sanders (Pac-12) were named their respective conference’s Freshman of the Year. Bahl was also named the Big 12’s Co-Pitcher of the Year.
The field will be narrowed to three on May 26. The 2022 Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year will be announced on May 31. The list of 25 was selected by the NFCA. The top 10, top three and winner are voted on by the NFCA Division I All-America Committee.
In 2022, the NFCA will award Freshman of the Year honors to a student-athlete from NCAA DI, NCAA DII, NCAA DIII and NAIA. For more information about all NFCA Awards, visit nfca.org.
San Diego State
UC San Diego
Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year previous winners
2021 – Tiare Jennings, Oklahoma
2020 – Award was not presented due to COVID-19
2019 – Danielle Williams, Northwestern
2018 – Jocelyn Alo, Oklahoma
2017 – Rachel Garcia, UCLA
2016 – Amanda Lorenz, Florida
2015 – Paige Parker, Oklahoma
2014 – Annie Aldrete, Tennessee & Kasey Cooper, Auburn
The NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) is the professional organization for fastpitch softball coaches. Known for its highly-regarded Schutt Sports/NFCA Freshman of the Year Awards, the NFCA also educates and supports softball coaches on a variety of different levels: from podcasts to a comprehensive drills database, to in-person events and National Convention.