Wallace State has school-record 35 student-athletes recognized by NJCAA for academic achievements

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HANCEVILLE – Wallace State athletics had a school-record 35 student-athletes recognized Tuesday as National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Athletes of Distinction for their 2015-16 academic achievements, including seven acknowledged as Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence recipients for finishing with a 4.0 GPA.

Wallace State softball had four Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence honorees: Julia Dailey, Shelby Brown, Sarah Ellen Battles and Megan Quimby.

Wallace State baseball’s Jake Nelson and Braxton Light were named Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence winners for their respective 4.0 GPAs along with Morgan Higgins of the women’s basketball team.   

Wallace State had 10 players named as Superior Academic Achievement winners for compiling a GPA between 3.80-3.99 during the 2015-16 academic year. The Superior Academic Achievement winners were women basketball’s Hannah Vest, Sarah Reid and Alex Lowery, men golf’s Eli Marty and Jesse Childress, volleyball’s Jamie Pittman and Stephanie Eckerd, softball’s Erin Benson and Ashton Gaddy and baseball’s Will Eiland.

Wallace State had 18 players named as Exemplary Academic Achievement recipients (3.60-3.79 GPA), including nine from the Wallace State baseball team: Brantley Ballenger, Garrett Suchey, Johnny Sklopan, Jonathan Smith, Lance Cleveland, Lane Meyer, Maison Goodwin and Peyton Hayes.

Alexandra Gamble, MaKenzie Bearden and Mallory Patterson were named Exemplary Academic Achievement honorees from the volleyball team, Jaylen McCoy, Kylen Butler, Xavier McCoy and LaParis Hall from the men’s basketball team, Kayla Byrd and Molli Garcia from the softball team and Taylor Ruehl from the women’s golf team.

The NJCAA recognized a record-number 4,587 student-athletes for their success in the classroom Tuesday with the presentation of the 2015-16 NJCAA Academic Student-Athlete Awards. Of the 57,472 student-athletes that participated in the NJCAA during the 2015-16 academic year, 7.98 percent earned national academic honors – over double the previous mark of 3.31 percent set last year. Of the student-athletes honored, a record 663 were presented the NJCAA Pinnacle Award for Academic Excellence after posting a 4.0 GPA. A total of 1,610 individuals earned the Superior Academic Achievement Award, while an additional 2,314 received the Exemplary Academic Achievement Award – both setting new records.

For the full list of individual winners, visit njcaa.org.

For more information about Wallace State athletics, visit wallacestate.edu.

See photo gallery at https://www.facebook.com/CullmanSense/.