Hanna Hull, a freshman pitcher from Virginia Wesleyan University, was named the DIII Honda Athlete of the Year nominee for Softball as announced by Executive Director Chris Voelz of THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards (CWSA) presented by Honda.
Hull is now designated one of 11 finalists for the prestigious DIII Honda Woman Athlete of the Year. This will be voted on at the end of the academic year by national balloting among 1,000 NCAA member schools as part of THE CWSA program, now in its 41st year.
"I am humbled and honored to be chosen as a nominee for Honda Athlete of the Year, “ said Hull. “This was an exceptional year for our program at Virginia Wesleyan University and I cannot be more proud to represent my institution. My success is a true reflection of the talented players and coaches I have had the privilege of working with this season. Outloving was a motto that we established and chose to live by throughout the entire season. Without the love and support of one another, I believe we would not have succeeded to this degree. I am so thankful for this program and proud to represent my teammates and coaches."
Hailing from Chesterfield, Va., Hull was recently named the DIII National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Player and Freshman of the Year after leading her team to the program’s first NCAA Championship title. She was named the DIII Championship Most Outstanding Player and the 2017 ODAC Player and Rookie of the Year while earning MOP honors at both the NCAA Super Regionals and Regionals.
A four-time NFCA/FPN National Pitcher of the Week, she led the nation in victories (32), shutouts (15) and earned run average (0.51) and helped her team set a DIII record for wins in a season with 54. She was also second in the nation with 372 strikeouts, breaking the previous conference record by 154. She finished her rookie season at 32-3 and had five saves on the year.
"Hanna Hull is the real deal, “stated head coach Brandon Elliott. “She is relentless in her work ethic, humble in her success and as competitive as they come. What most impresses me with Hanna is her genuine love for her teammates and coaches. Hanna is the first one to give credit for her success to someone else who has helped her along the way. What she, Coach Inzana and our entire pitching staff have done together this season is unbelievable. I couldn't have hand-picked a more deserving athlete for this award. However, it is the person Hanna Hull is that impresses me the most.”
All Honda Sports nominees from DIII and DII become a finalist for the prestigious 2017 Honda Woman Athlete of the Year in their respective divisions, presented in a live telecast on CBS Sports on June 26, 2017, in downtown Los Angeles. The Honda Sports nominees are recognized in 11 DIII and DII NCAA-sanctioned sports; cross country, basketball, field hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, volleyball, and track & field.
THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards has honored the nation’s top NCAA women athletes for 41 years, recognizing superior athletic skills, leadership, academic excellence and eagerness to participate in community service. Since commencing its sponsorship in 1986, Honda has provided more than $3.1 million in institutional grants to the universities of the award winners and nominees to support women’s athletics programs at the institutions.