Two Big 12 softball student-athletes, Grace Green (Oklahoma) and Shealyn O’Leary (Texas), are among the top-25 candidates in consideration for the Schutt Sports/National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division I National Freshman of the Year award.
In conference games this season, Green currently leads the Big 12 in batting average (.583), on-base percentage (.645), slugging percentage (1.542), home runs (seven), RBIs (18) and total bases (37). She also leads all Big 12 freshmen this year in the following offensive categories: batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, hits (45), home runs (12), runs scored (37), RBIs (38) and total bases (85).
O'Leary has posted a 12-1 overall record to go with the best ERA in all of NCAA Division I softball at 0.51. The pitcher owns nine complete games, four solo shutouts, a save and 54 strikeouts over 83 innings of work while allowing a miniscule .156 opponent batting average. She also currently leads the Big 12 Conference and ranks sixth in NCAA Division I in walks-per-seven innings (0.84) having issued just 10 free passes.
On May 9, the list will be trimmed down to the top 10 and the top-three finalists will be released on May 21. The Schutt Sports / NFCA Division I National Freshman of the Year trophy will be presented during a live ceremony at the Women’s College World Series banquet on May 28.
The Big 12 has had two previous winners with the most recent recipient being Jocelyn Alo (Oklahoma) last season.