2016 NCAA Division III National Champions
AWARDS: Five @Patriot_sb players earn all-region honors

Monday, May 15, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist || wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – UT Tyler’s KK Stevens, Kaylee Prather and Cheyenne Thompson have earned NFCA All-West Region first-team honors and Alaina Kissinger and Andrea Gonzales second-team selections for their roles in leading the Patriots to another stellar season. The five Patriots who earned all-region selection have helped the team to a 42-4 record coming into the Tyler, Texas Super Regional where the team will host East Texas Baptist starting at 4 p.m. on Friday before the two teams play again at 1 p.m. on Saturday at Suddenlink Field. An if-necessary game would follow if the teams split to decide who advances to the NCAA DIII National Championship in Oklahoma City.

NFCA PRESS RELEASE

Prather is a first-team outfield selection who is also a finalist for the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division III National Player of the Year honors. A senior from Elysian Fields, Prather leads the nation with 82 hits and has a .506 batting average this season. She was named the American Southwest Conference Player of the Year and is the all-time leader in program history with a .468 career batting average and 74 stolen bases – despite only playing at UT Tyler for two seasons after transferring as a junior. She currently has 11 doubles, five triples, two home runs and 27 RBI coming into this week’s NCAA DIII Super Regional.

Stevens has 50 hits this season and surpassed the 200-hit milestone in her career last weekend in helping to lead the Patriots to a regional title. A senior from Plano, Stevens has started 200 games in her career and is one of only six players in program history to surpass 200 hits. Stevens is now a three-time all-region selection and enters this weekend with leading the Patriots with 13 home runs and 50 RBI through 46 games. Behind the plate at catcher, Stevens has made only two errors with 1,012 putouts and 43 assists in her career.

Thompson earns her first career all-region honor after putting up a sensational sophomore season with 47 RBI and 65 total hits. An outfielder from Mexia, Thompson is hitting .417 this season with 17 doubles, two triples and seven home runs. She has three outfield assists on her resume and has already stolen 24 bases in her career. Thompson enters this weekend with 96 career hits.

Kissinger is 23-2 on the season for the Patriots, including throwing a one-hit shutout last weekend in a 9-0 win over La Verne in the regional opener. A senior from Telephone, Kissinger has a 67-4 record and 1.11 ERA in 108 appearances and 449 1/3 innings of work during her UT Tyler career. She comes into this weekend with 93 strikeouts and a 1.51 ERA for the Patriots. Gonzales is in her first season with the Patriots after transferring from McClennan College and has started all 46 games at first base. A left-handed hitter, Gonzales is hitting .420 with 55 total hits and 39 RBI for the Patriots. An Elgin native, she leads the team with 15 doubles and has not made a single error in the field.

All-Region players are nominated and selected by NFCA member coaches in each of the eight Division III regions. First Team All-Region choices are eligible for selection to the NFCA All-America team, which will be announced the evening of May 24 online at NFCA.org and in person at the NCAA Division III Championship banquet in Oklahoma City.