OVERLAND PARK, KS—Courtesy: Hawaii Athletics - University of Hawai'i senior softball pitcher Stephanie Ricketts has been selected as one of 10 finalists who excel both on and off the field for the 2012 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to determine the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award website through May 14. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I softball head coaches' votes to determine the winner. The finalists were chosen by a media committee from the original list of 30 candidates announced in February.
On the field, Ricketts, the two-time Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year, has helped lead the Rainbow Wahine to a 30-3 record this season. She is 19-2 overall and 4-0 in WAC action. Ricketts has been one of the cornerstones of the team for the last few years—this season, more than ever as she currently has a 1.00 ERA in 139.2 innings pitched with seven shut outs this season. She has 158 strike outs while holding opposing offenses to a .168 batting average. Ricketts has also already broken several UH career pitching records—she is UH's all-time leader in wins (89); strike outs (747); appearances (149); starts (125); and innings pitched (852.0). Ricketts has been named WAC Pitcher of the week four times this season and 11 times in her career. She was also drafted earlier this spring with the 10th overall pick in the National Pro Fastpitch league's Senior Draft by the Chicago Bandits.
In the classroom, Ricketts is on track to graduate in four years this spring with a degree in psychology. After graduation, She is looking to pursue a career as a psychology or oncology clinical nurse specialist to follow in her mother and grandmother's footsteps. She is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, a two-time NFCA scholar-athlete, and a three-time all-academic WAC player.
Ricketts has been a life-long volunteer from her days in high school in San Jose, Calif,. where she spent time volunteering at the Good Samaritan Hospital in the Mother-Baby Unit; at the Sacred Heart Community Center in San Jose helping distribute care packages to homeless families and singles; at the Agnews Developmental Center where she worked with mentally challenged patients; and at the Villa Sienna Nusrsing Facility where she helped work with patients with Alzheimer's and dementia. In Hawai'i, she has worked as a Special Olympics volunteer; has been a four-year participant at the annual Kids' Fest which promotes healthy lifestyles to children; has served as a camp instructor at the UH softball camps; is currently a Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) representative for her senior year; and this past summer, Ricketts and her sisters Samantha and Keilani served as instructors/supervisors at a clinic in Pago Pago, Samoa, where they taught the value of education and athletics while trying to teach the Samoan youth the game of softball.
Lowe's, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, will announce the Senior CLASS Award® winner during the 2012 NCAA Women's College World Series, which will be held May 31-June 6 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
For more information on all the finalists, visit seniorclassaward.com.
Valerie Arioto, Pitcher/First Base, California
Katelyn Boyd, Shortstop, Arizona State
Mallory Duran-Sellers, Outfield, Southern Illinois
Julie Fernandez, First Base, Lehigh
Ashley Hansen, Shortstop, Stanford
Michelle Moultrie, Centerfield, Florida
Christi Orgeron, Utility, Louisiana
Cassie Reilly-Boccia, Outfield/First Base, Alabama
Stephanie Ricketts, Pitcher, Hawaii
Niki Williams, Utility, Washington
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