SOUTH PRINCE GEORGE, Va. -- The Richard Bland College softball team has been recognized as an honorable mention recipient of a 2016-17 NJCAA Academic Team Award. The Statesmen are among 133 NJCAA softball programs that attained a team grade point average of 3.0 or higher for the most recent academic year. The squad of first-year head coach Katy Lampman completed the year with a 3.11 Team GPA.
"I am very proud of our team for their commitment to excellence in the classroom," said Lampman. "We set a goal at the beginning of the year, and we were able to attain it. I commend our student-athletes for their excellent time management skills and their academic successes."
Team members included recent second-year student-athletes Shannon Buffington/Virginia Beach, Katelyn Cobb/Newsoms, Tabby Dabney/Mechanicsville, Sierra Johnson/Capron, Katelyn King/Chesterfield, August Ringer/Yale and Morgan Whitley/Franklin, along with first-year student-athletes Brooklynn Bilyard/Culpeper, Taylor Daniel/Alberta, Ashley Fritz/North Chesterfield, Kay'Lee Justice/Suffolk, Kamryn Lanier/Chester, Kara Morris/Kents Store, Kennedy Presson/Wakefield and Tess Thomas/Tappahannock.
The NJCAA has recognized the team with the highest overall GPA for their sport and gender with the NJCAA Academic Team of the Year Award since 1993. Teams that qualify with an overall GPA of at least a 3.0 receive honorable mention recognition.
A record number of programs earned honorable mention recognition this year by meeting the award requirements. A total of 740 teams posted a 3.0 GPA or higher, breaking the previous record of 687 set last year. Lincoln (Ill.) College posted the top team GPA among NJCAA softball teams at 3.74.