HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The 2017 Division II Conference Commissioners Association Softball All-South Region Teams were announced on Monday, headlined by Player of the Year Kaitlyn Bannister and Pitcher of the Year Tyler Harrison who both hail from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. West Georgia's Sierra Stella was named Second Team All-Region in the release, becoming the first UWG player since Nicole Yancey in 2014 to earn that honor.
The Gulf South Conference placed 17 players on the two teams including 11 of the 14 First Team selections, while the Sunshine State Conference had eight representatives and the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference had three choices. Stella was a First Team All-Gulf South Conference honoree two weeks ago, and was selected as Second Team to the D2CCA All-Region team.
Stella hit .350 on the year, starting every one of the Wolves' contests at second base in the 2017 season. She scored 47 runs and had 63 hits, which the hits places her among the top-10 single season performances in UWG softball history. She set a school record as well with 26 stolen bases on the year, breaking a record that stood at West Georgia for 15 years.
West Florida – who will be hosting Lee in the upcoming NCAA South Super Regional – leads all teams with five selections including three First Team performers, while Valdosta State (four), Saint Leo (three), Claflin (three), Lee (two), UAH (two), and Mississippi College (two) all had multiple picks to the teams.
Those that earned First Team status will now advance to the All-America ballot.
The Division II Conference Commissioners Association encourages and promotes Division II athletics and high standards of sportsmanship as important elements of higher education. The CCA is a key communications link among the conferences as they discuss views, policies and regulations that impact Division II intercollegiate athletics and works closely with the NCAA as a communications channel to NCAA Division II member colleges and universities.
C – Carly Crawford, Mississippi College
1B – Hayley Cruthers, Valdosta State
2B – Kacie Kelly, Saint Leo
SS – Rhiannon Sassman, West Florida
3B – Kaitlyn Bannister, UAH
OF – Magnolia West, Palm Beach Atlantic
OF – Katherine Lee, Mississippi College
OF – Taylor Hartenbach, Valdosta State
UTL – Jacey Castro, West Florida
UTL/P – Tyler Harrison, UAH
DP – Shelby Woodard, North Alabama
P – Stephanie Adkins, Saint Leo
P – Becca Taylor, West Florida
P – Taylor Moran, Lee
Player of the Year – Kaitlyn Bannister, UAH
Pitcher of the Year – Tyler Harrison, UAH
C – Caitlin Steel, West Florida
1B – Jasmine Harris, Barry
2B – Sierra Stella, West Georgia
SS – Jessica Mohl, Valdosta State
3B – Chelsea Canara, Valdosta State
OF – Rachael Heath, Saint Leo
OF – LaKaylin Lee, Claflin
OF – Dana Edmundson, Nova Southeastern
UTL – Chelsea Hall, Claflin
UTL/P – Makaleigh Dooley, Tampa
DP – Abby McKinney, Lee
P – Francais Olexa, Lynn
P – Sarah Maloney, West Florida
P – Tiaria Norman, Claflin