Dec. 7, 2012
LOUISVILLE, KY. – Nine Marshall softball players were tabbed as 2011-12 NFCA All-America Scholar Athletes, the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) announced Thursday.
Emileigh Cooper, Morgan Cottrell, Jessica Ferrick, Rebecca Gamby, Alysia Hively, Jessica Hughes, Brianna Miluk, Samantha Spurlock and Andi Williamson were all honored for achieving a grade point average of 3.50 or better during the 2011-12 academic year.
Nine honorees are the most for MU since having nine named during the 2004-05 year.
“We had a successful year both athletically and academically and we look forward to build on that success in 2013,” head coach Shonda Stanton said about her team’s on and off the field performance.
Marshall was one of 140 Division I institutions honored by the NFCA. The Thundering Herd was one of six Conference USA members and ranked second among conference schools. Houston led C-USA with 11 student-athletes honored.
The honor marks the second component of the Association’s academic award program. Back in late October the teams with the highest GPAs in each membership category were recognized as 2012 NFCA Top Ten All-Academic Teams. Marshall finished in the top 50 with a team GPA of 3.27, marking 13 consecutive seasons the Herd has had a GPA of 3.0 or better under Stanton.
“We know what it will take to break into the top 25 in both categories and are committed to such excellence,” Stanton continued. “We are really proud of our players and a quick review of their accomplishments demonstrates the quality of student-athlete we have in our program.”
Cooper had a 3.92 GPA as a freshman. The nursing major has previously been honored with the C-USA Academic Medal and was named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll.
Cottrell is being honored for the second time. The biology major had a 3.7 GPA as a junior. Her other academic awards include being named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll twice and earning the Academic Medal in the 2009-10 year.
For the third time in her career, Ferrick is being honored. The accounting major earned a 3.92 GPA during her junior year. She has been named to the Commissioner’s Honor Roll and a recipient of the Academic Medal all three years.
Ferrick also was presented with the Outstanding Accounting Senior Award this past October and was given a $1,000 scholarship from the Huntington Chapter of the West Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants.
Gamby picks up her fourth straight NFCA honor. The ecology and evolutionary biology major graduated Marshall with a 3.72 GPA. She was named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll all four years and picked up a wealth of other academic honors during her career including ESPN/CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team in 2010 and 2012 and C-USA All-Academic in 2011 and 2012.
Hively is being honored for the fourth time in her career. The senior had a 3.89 GPA while double majoring in exercise physiology and psychology. The West Virginia native has been named to the Commissioner’s Honor Roll and awarded the Academic Medal all four of her years.
A five time recipient is Hughes, who had a 4.0 GPA during her final season. She received a bachelor's degree in accounting & finance and a master's degree in accounting while at Marshall. Hughes was also named to the Commissioner’s Honor Roll and given the Academic Medal all five of her years. Her additional academic honors include being named all-conference academic and ESPN/CoSIDA Academic All-District in 2012.
Miluk picked up her first honor as a freshman. The communication disorders major earned a 3.61 GPA as a freshman.
Spurlock wrapped up her Herd career with her first NFCA honor. The marketing major finished her senior year with a 3.6 GPA. She appeared in the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll three times.
The final recipient is Williamson. She is being honored for the second time. The physical education and health major had a 3.5 GPA during her record-breaking junior season. Williamson twice has been named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll and was awarded the academic medal in 2011.
MU has now collected 79 NFCA All-Academic Scholar Athlete awards since 1999-2000.
Marshall opens the 20th season of Herd softball February 8 in Tampa, FL.