New York, NY–Senior catcher Kristen Beikirch (Brockport, NY/Brockport) has been named the 2014-2015 Skyline Conference NCAA Woman of the Year and is now a candidate for the next step in the process to honoring the NCAA Woman Of the Year. She was one of 480 nominees for the prestigious honor, the most in the history of the Woman of the Year program, which is now in its 25th year.
Earlier this year, Beikirch was named to the 2015 Capital One Academic All-America® Softball Second Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America. She becomes the College’s first three time Academic All-American, an honor she also earned in 2013 and 2014. Honored in the fall of 2014 as the Eastern College Athletic Conference’s Division III Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Beikirch has continued to distinguish herself even beyond her graduation from Sage in May.
The NCAA Woman of the Year program celebrates four pillars, academics, athletics, service and leadership, all qualities exhibited by Beikirch as a student-athlete and leader for the softball program.
Next, conference nominations will be forwarded to the NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee. The selection committee chooses the top 10 honorees in each of the three NCAA divisions. From among those 30 candidates, the selection committee then determines the top three finalists in each division. Finally, the members of the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics will select the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year from the top nine finalists. The 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year will be announced at an awards dinner in Indianapolis on Sunday, October 18, 2015. You can learn more about the award and selection process online at www.ncaa.org/WOTY. The NCAA will announce the Top 30 honorees on NCAA.org in early September.
She batted .397 this season with eight doubles, two triples, and three home runs, while combining for a .578 slugging percentage in 2015. She was also a perfect 12-12 on stolen bases with 34 starts this year. She earned Skyline Conference Second Team Honors as a catcher and was named to the 2015 NFCA All-Region Third Team. She is the program’s only four-time Skyline Conference All-Star. She was also named the 2014-2015 Sage Female Co-Athlete of the Year after earning a selection as the 2015 team’s Gator of the Year as the squad’s Most Valuable Player.
Head softball coach Jamie Brown Said of Beikirch, “There isn't anything Kristen wouldn't have done to help her team win.” Brown continued, “She works extremely hard and has been such a tremendous player for us. Kristen has been such a consistent, remarkable player for four years. This year, like the others, she was one of the best players in our conference. She is ending her career with several school records broken, which alone is amazing. She is an outstanding student-athlete that will definitely be hard to replace."
She helped to rewrite the Sage softball record book during her outstanding career. She is the program's career stolen base leader with 65, while also leading the Gators with her 166 runs scored. She also became the all-time career hit leader this past spring and finishes with 221 hits. She played in a program-best 158 games with 158 starts. She ranks first at Sage in most at-bats (534) as well as total bases (327), while standing No. 2 in doubles (37), No. 4 in triples (9), No. 2 in home runs (17), and No. 3 in RBI's (85). She owns a .414 career batting average as well in her time as a Gator with a .612 career slugging percentage.
When tapped in the Fall of 2014 as the 2013-2014 ECAC Division III Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year, she became the first Sage softball player honored with the award.
A biology and pre-medicine major at Sage, she graduated on May 16 with Summa Cum Laude honors after attaining a 3.95 grade point average. A Deans’ List student every semester, she was a four-time Skyline Conference Scholar-Athlete and was a Kellas Scholar at Sage. She majored in biology at Sage with minors in Chemistry, Psychology, and Spanish, and earned an Honors Degree. She was also named to the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, the TriBeta Honor Society, the Psi Chi Honor Society, and the Athenian Honor Society for academic achievement at Russell Sage College. She also earned the McMorran Biology Award at graduation. She will be attending Albany Medical College in the fall to obtain a medical degree with intentions to go into pediatrics, potentially primary care pediatrics.
Also a two-time member of Sage’s Athletic Honor Society, she was also saluted as the 2012-2013 Sage Female Athlete of the Year as a sophomore. She once again attained the award as a senior garnering the 2014-2015 Sage Co-Female Athlete of the Year, while also earning her second citation as the softball team’s Gator of the Year as the Most Valuable Player.