LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Forty-eight student-athletes from 24 different institutions garnered 2017 NFCA NJCAA Division I All-America honors, the Association announced on Wednesday afternoon.
Two-time national champions, Butler Community College led the way with five All-Americans, four on the first team. Florida SouthWestern State College, Chipola College, College of Central Florida and Howard College each garnered four All-America nods. Yavapai College put three student-athletes on the first team, while Florida SouthWestern and Howard had two first-team selections.
Additionally, Howard’s Evelyn Loyola was named the Diamond Sports Catcher of the Year and Crowder College's Oakley Sisemore was selected the New Balance/NFCA Golden Shoe recipient.
Pitcher Regan Mergele, infielder Becca Schulte, infielder Ki’Audra Hayter and utility player Brynn Minor were Butler’s four first-team honorees with Mergele and Minor earning their second All-America nods after being second-team selections in 2016. Mergele, who was named the NJCAA DI Tournament’s Most Outstanding Pitcher, finished with the third lowest ERA in NJCAA DI at 0.75 and finished undefeated at 29-0. She struck out 196 batters and walked just 45 in 130 innings, while averaging the second-best strikeouts per seven innings (10.55) and four lowest opponent’s batting average (.153). Schulte ranked second with 108 RBI and fourth and fourth with 26 home runs. The sophomore was named the NJCAA DI Tournament’s Most Valuable Player and Most Outstanding Offensive Player. For the season, she hit .433 with 12 doubles, a .478 on-base percentage and .906 slugging percentage. Hayter hit .462 with eight triples, 10 home runs, 51 RBI, 84 runs scored and 45 stolen bases. Her triples and runs ranked third and sixth, respectively. Minor launched 30 long balls, good for second most in the nation, and led NJCAA DI with 212 total bases and a 1.158 slugging percentage. She drove in the fourth highest amount of runs with 97, doubled 23 times, scored 81 runs and registered 91 hits. In the circle, she was 12-0 with a 1.07 ERA and five saves. Minor struck out 71 and allowed 54 hits in 78.2 innings.
Earning Yavapai’s three first-team distinctions are catcher Jaydee Boursaw, infielder Andreqa Sotelo and outfielder Raelynn Rios. Boursaw, the ACCAC Player of the Year, led the nation with 32 home runs, was second with a 1.124 slugging percentage and third with 101 RBI. She hit .480 with 85 hits and 73 runs scored. Sotelo, a sophomore first baseman, won the NJCAA DI batting title with a .567 average. She collected 102 hits, 28 doubles and 20 home runs, while driving in 70 runs and scoring 78 times. Her doubles and hits ranked fourth and fifth, respectively in the country. Rios hit . 491 with 84 hits, 12 doubles, a triple, 21 long balls, 80 RBI and 61 runs scored. She slugged .942 and reached base at a .553 clip.
Loyola was one of Howard’s two first-team All-America selections. The Diamond Sports Catcher of the Year hit .423 with 11 doubles, 13 homers, 62 RBI and 40 runs scored. She slugged .744 and threw out six of 17 runners attempting to steal for .353 caught stealing percentage. Joining her on the first team is sophomore designated player Kaylynn Lopez, who hit .456 with 22 home runs and 71 RBI. She recorded 82 hits, 22 doubles and a .944 slugging percentage.
Florida SouthWestern’s first team All-America duo is pitcher Courtney Gettins and infielder Marta Fuentes. Gettins, a two-time first team All-American, finished the season with a 35-1 record, three saves and a 1.46 ERA, while limiting the opposition to a .170 batting average. The 2017 Suncoast Conference and FCSAA/Region 8 Pitcher of the Year ranked among nation’s best in multiple categories. She led the nation wins (35), while ranking fourth in innings pitched (226.0), fifth in strikeouts (236), sixth in complete games (26) and 12th in ERA (1.46). Fuentes, from leadoff spot, finished her sophomore campaign with 59 stolen bases, to rank first on the team and third in the NJCAA. The speedy second baseman and two-time NFCA All-American hit .430 with 99 hits, 10 doubles and four triples.
Morgan Goree of Chipola College is the final first-team pitching recipient. The freshman right-hander led NJCAA with a 0.58 ERA and held her opponents to a miniscule .158 batting average. Goree finished her rookie campaign 28-2 with 206 strikeouts to just 37 walks in 191.2 innings of work.
Lake Land College’s Samantha Valentine rounds out the first-team infield selections. She led NJCAA with 120 hits, 98 runs and 252 at bats. The sophomore was third with 10 triples and ninth with 25 doubles. Additionally, she was perfect in 32 stolen base attempts, posted a .506 on-base percentage and slugged. 726.
Joining Rios as with first-team outfield accolades are Wabash Valley’s Natalie David, Seminole State College of Florida’s Jordan Davis and Weatherford College’s Macie Perrin. David toped NJCAA with 109 RBI and recorded the third highest batting average at .531. She was seventh with an even 1.000 slugging percentage and totaled the third most bases at 207. Davis, a sophomore, hit .516 with the second most hits in NJCAA at 116. She scored 66 times, swiped 50 bases and recorded eight assists from the outfield. Perrin launched the eighth most home runs with 22 and knocked in 86 runs, good for ninth overall. The sophomore hit .455 with 18 doubles, five triples, 59 runs scored and a .921 slugging percentage.
Golden Shoe winner Oakley Sisemore of Crowder was a second-team All-American selection in the outfield. Receiving the honor for her base-running exploits, Sisemore was a perfect 71-for-71 in stolen bases, leading all of NJCAA DI.