LOUISVILLE, Ky. – University of North Georgia junior pitcher Courtney Poole has been voted the winner of the inaugural Schutt Sports/NFCA Division II National Player of the Year award, the Association announced.
The National Player of the Year trophy was presented to Poole on Wednesday evening at the Division II Championship/All-American banquet at the Will Rogers Theatre.
Poole, a homegrown talent from Watkinsville, Ga., has been a dominant force in the circle for sixth-ranked North Georgia and played an integral part in the Nighthawks reaching the Division II National Championship. The Peach Belt Pitcher of the Year leads the NCAA – in all divisions – in victories (42), is second in Division II in ERA (0.95) and is third in shutouts (15) and fifth in strikeouts (335). The staff workhorse (42-3) has recorded 50 appearances (45 starts) and logged 300.2 innings in the Nighthawks’ 56 games this season. Poole has finished 36 of those starts, while allowing just 29 walks and holding her opponents to a miniscule .172 batting average. Her efforts in the circle this season have also earned her NFCA Division II All-American status.
She was joined by Missouri-St. Louis junior pitcher Hannah Perryman and Augustana (S.D) senior pitcher/utility Jenelle Trautmann, both first-team All-Americans, as the first finalists for this prestigious award.
The Division II National Player of the Year award was voted on by the members of the NFCA’s Division II All-American & Coaching Staff of the Year Committee.
Behind the collaboration between the NFCA and the Division II Head Coaches Committee, and the generosity of Schutt Sports, the award was created to honor the outstanding athletic achievement among softball student-athletes throughout Division II.