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Lady Statesmen Named NJCAA Softball Academic Team of the Year

The NJCAA named the Lincoln Trail College Lady Statesmen the Softball Academic Team of the Year. The Lady Statesmen led the nation with a cumulative 3.71 GPA.

“I’m so proud of this team,” says coach Gary Rodgers. “It is really hard to beat an honor like this. They gave everything in both academics and in athletics. It was a total team effort. What more can you ask?”

Rodgers says he stresses academics as soon as his players arrive on campus. “I tell them that academics is the most important thing. It gets you to the next step and it gets you through life.”

Six players on the team earned individual academic honors from the NJCAA. Lexi Aders (Bristow, Ind.), Joslyn Leverett (Greenwood, Ind.), and Miranda Pruitt (Homer, Ill.) were recognized with the Superior Academic Achievement Award. It is given to student athletes earning a GPA of 3.80-3.99.

Hannah Kelly (Plainfield, Ind.), Carlee McFarland (Terre Haute, Ind.), and Erynn Shaw (Hope, Ind.) were recognized with the Exemplary Academic Achievement Award. It is given to student athletes earning a GPA of 3.60-3.79.

Rodgers says student athletes work hard to balance the demands of the classroom with the demands of performing on the field. “Our players have practice time, game time and travel time and that means they have to be away from the classroom. We make sure that our players check with their instructors so they know what they need to do to stay on course. I remember watching this group study and work on the way back from games.”

Rodgers says the student athletes at Lincoln Trail College wouldn’t be where they are without their support system of instructors and staff that are willing to work with athletes to make sure they are succeeding.

“Our whole campus should be proud of this honor from the NJCAA,” says Rodgers.

The Lincoln Trail College baseball team was an honorable mention selection for the Baseball Academic Team of the Year. The Statesmen had a cumulative GPA of 3.30.

Eight baseball players earned individual honors from the NJCAA. Keaton Sackett (DeWitt, Mich.) earned the Superior Academic Achievement Award. David Blanco (Fishers, Ind.), Brad Busald (Rushville, Ind.), Zach Denney (Russellville, Ky.), Austin Krause (Lansing, Mich.), Jay Prior (Greenwood, Ind.), Seaton Sheldon (Bowling Green, Ky.), and Neil Williams (Effingham, Ill.) earned Exemplary Academic Achievement Awards.

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