Saluting outstanding academic and athletic accomplishment, two members of the Linfield College softball team have been named to the Capital One Academic All-America team for NCAA Division III as selected and announced Tuesday by the College Sports Information Directors of America.
A two-time Academic All-District VIII selection, senior Jaydee Baxter was chosen as a first team Capital One Academic All-American as a senior. Fellow all-district honoree Karleigh Prestianni (Sr., Grants Pass, Ore.) was appointed to the Academic All-America third team.
Majoring in exercise science major, Baxter maintained a 3.83 grade point average, despite the complications of Linfield going deep into the NCAA softball playoffs each of the last four years, necessitating travel away from campus for up to two weeks at a time.
A four-year starter in the outfield, Baxter is part of a record-setting senior class that reached the NCAA Division III national championship game three consecuitive seasons, finishing as national champion in 2011 and as runner-up in 2010 and 2012. Linfield won 46 of 53 games this spring, the second-highest win total in program history.
She was a first team all-Northwest Conference and all-West Region pick.
Wrapping up a career that spanned 195 games, four NWC championships and three regional titles, she started 175 contests in center field for the Wildcats. She concludes her career with a batting average of .345 with 116 RBI, 22 home runs and 40 stolen bases.
Baxter’s .438 on-base percentage ranks sixth all-time at Linfield and her .568 slugging percentage is eighth-best in program history.
She was recently named the recipient of Linfield’s Vern Marshall Award, singling out the male and female student-athlete displaying the greatest tenacity.
Prestianni, a junior third baseman, carries a 3.50 GPA while majoring in finance.
Starting 154 of a possible 155 games, Prestianni has hit 10 or more home runs during each of her three seasons. She boasts a career batting average of .424, including a career-high .432 this spring. During Linfield’s recent run to the national champion game, she amassed 12 doubles, two triples and 10 home runs while driving in 46 runs.
Her 43 career home runs rank third in the Linfield record book behind Staci Doucette and Emilee Lepp. Doucette (73) and Lepp (65) rank 1-2 in NCAA Division III record book in career home runs.
A three-time NFCA All-American, Prestianni earned first team all-conference and all-region honors as well. In addition, she also earned a spot on the Bloomington Regional All-Tournament team.
Outside of the classroom and softball, both Baxter and Prestianni have devoted untold hours as student managers and recruiting assistants for the Linfield football team.
To be eligible for Academic All-America consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00.
Since the program’s inception in 1952, CoSIDA has bestowed Academic All-America honors on more than 14,000 student-athletes in Divisions I, II, III and NAIA, covering all NCAA championship sports.
Jaydee Baxter, Karleigh Prestianni
Strong in classroom and on diamond
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128