Wallace State-Hanceville softball players Heather Parker and Lauren Payne were recognized as National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division I All-Americans on Thursday, each garnering second-team selections.
Both women helped Wallace State finish third in the nation at the NJCAA Division I national tournament last weekend and led the Lady Lions to the program’s fifth state championship in six seasons, seventh consecutive ACCC Northern Division title and to a 60-12 record.
Parker, who was an all-state pitcher and first baseman for Mortimer Jordan and named to the all-tournament team at the AHSAA Class 5A state tournament in 2009 and 2010 (and named most valuable player in ‘09), capped a stellar two-year career by finishing with a 29-7 record and 1.52 ERA this season. She had 32 complete games in 37 starts, tossing 10 shutouts, and striking out 261 hitters in 243.1 innings. Offensively, she hit .390 with seven homers and 36 RBIs.
She was named ACCC/Region 22 tournament MVP earlier this month after compiling a 5-1 record and nine hits, including a homer, in a three-day span.
Parker, who has comitted to continue college play at David Lipscomb University in Nashville, completes her Wallace State career with a 51-14 record and 1.68 ERA. She threw 50 complete games, including 14 shutouts, in 64 starts. Offensively, Parker compiled a .357 career average with 11 homers and 59 RBIs in 308 at bats.
“Heather worked extremely hard in the offseason to become more dominant than she was last season on the mound. She leaves as one of the best pitchers and players to put on a Wallace State softball uniform,” said WSCC coach Jayne Clem. “I’m blown away that she wasn’t chosen as a first-team selection.”