LOUISVILLE, Ky. — NFCA Division III All-Americans Kaitlyn Hasty of Christopher Newport and Alexis Michon of Eastern Connecticut State collected two more honors for themselves and their schools on Friday, when the Association announced the duo as the 2022 Schutt Sports/NFCA Division III National Player and Pitcher of the Year, respectively.
Senior first baseman Hasty, who received her third career All-America honor on May 24, helped lead the top-ranked (47-1) Captains to their first Division III softball national championship earlier this week in Salem, Va. She hit the go-ahead grand slam in the fifth inning of Monday’s opening game of the best-of-three NCAA championship series that broke a 2-2 tie and propelled Christopher Newport to a 6-3 victory over No. 20 Trine.
It was the school-record 53rd home run of her career and the first long ball for the feared slugger since her blast in a victory over fourth-ranked Salisbury on May 6 in the Coast-to-Coast Athletic Conference Tournament.
For the season, Hasty batted .414 with 33 runs, 53 hits and 12 doubles, and led NCAA Division III with 19 homers and 67 RBI. She ranked second nationally in slugging percentage (.953), had a .532 on-base percentage and a 1.485 OPS, drawing 28 walks and striking out just 16 times in 128 at-bats.
The Chesapeake, Va., native, earned Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division III Player of the Week honors on March 15, when she hit .700 with two doubles, three walks, four homers and 11 RBI. She previously earned All-Region and All-America honors in 2019 and 2021.
Meanwhile, sophomore right-hander Michon also led her team to the Division III Finals in Salem, where the third-ranked (44-7) Warriors went 1-2, to tie with No. 4 Salisbury for fifth place among the eight finalists.
She earned her first All-Region and All-America honors this season — a campaign in which she went 24-1 with a 1.07 ERA, 13 complete games and six shutouts over 26 starts, 37 walks, 204 strikeouts and a .154 opponent batting average. She tied for ninth nationally in wins and ranked 11th in WHIP (0.77).
The Montville High graduate also helped herself at the plate this season, batting .319 with 18 runs, 30 hits, six doubles, two homers and 44 RBI in 94 at-bats.
The Schutt Sports/NFCA Player of the Year award was created in 2016 to honor outstanding softball achievement in NCAA Division III. In 2019, the Association expanded the award to include separate Player and Pitcher of the Year honors.
The awards are voted on by the elected members of the NFCA Division III All-American Committee with one head coach representing each of the 10 NCAA regions. To be eligible, a student-athlete’s head coach must be a member.
Schutt Sports/NFCA Player & Pitcher of the Year recipients
2022 — Kaitlyn Hasty, Christopher Newport (player) & Alexis Michon, Eastern Connecticut State (pitcher)
2021 — Jessica Goldyn, Virginia Wesleyan (player) & Hanna Hull, Virginia Wesleyan (pitcher)
2020 — no awards presented due to COVID-19
2019 — Mackenzie Chitwood, Lynchburg (player) & Ally Wiegand, Illinois Wesleyan (pitcher)
2018 — Hanna Hull, pitcher, Virginia Wesleyan
2017 — Hanna Hull, pitcher, Virginia Wesleyan
2016 — Kelsey Batten, pitcher, UT Tyler
The NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) is the professional organization for fastpitch softball coaches. Known for its highly-regarded student-athlete awards, the NFCA also educates and supports softball coaches on a variety of different levels: from webinars to legal counsel, to in-person events and the National Convention.