Academic All-District Honors for Hilltopper Duo

Academic All-District Honors for Hilltopper Duo

WEST LIBERTY, W.Va. – The West Liberty University softball program scored a rare “double” on Thursday when Hilltopper seniors Makenzie Amend and Kat Donzella were honored as first-team selections on the 2021 NCAA Division II Academic All-District® Softball Team.

   Selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), the 2021 Academic All-District® Teams recognize the nation’s top student-athletes for their combined achievements on the field and in the classroom.

   Post-season honors are nothing new for the former high school teammates from Wheeling, W.Va. as each played a major role in leading Coach Herb Minch’s Hilltoppers to their second straight Mountain East Conference championship and NCAA Division II Atlantic Region Tournament berth this spring.

   Amend earned D2CCA All-America honors after being voted the MEC and Atlantic Region Pitcher of the Year. The hard-throwing righthander became the first West Liberty pitcher to reach the 500-strikeout career milestone and finished the season ranked among the Top 10 nationally in strikeouts per game and fewest hits allowed. She made history by throwing the first no-hitter in MEC Tournament history and teamed up with Riley Bennington to spin a no-hit gem in the Atlantic Region Tournament opener.

   An honors graduate in Criminal Justice, Amend has maintained a perfect 4.00 GPA in graduate school as she pursues her master’s degree in Criminology.

   Donzella also put together one of the top seasons in Mountain East Conference softball history. The MEC Player of the Year was an NFCA All-American and All-Region selection after putting up some astronomical numbers. Donzella finished the season ranked among the Top 5 nationally in total hits, total bases and doubles after leading the MEC in hits, runs, doubles, extra-base hits, total bases, batting average, on-base average and slugging percentage.

   Off the field, Donzella was the banner carrier at Commencement for the College of Liberal Arts after graduating with the highest GPA in the College. Now pursuing a graduate degree in Criminology on the hilltop, Donzella has maintained a perfect 4.00 GPA.

   The 2021 Academic All-District® Softball Team includes student-athletes from the Mountain East Conference (MEC), Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) and Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA).

   As a first-team Academic All-District® selection, Amend and Donzella are now candidates for the 2021 NCAA Division II Academic All-America® Softball Team. Academic All-America® balloting gets under way later this month.



NCAA Division II

District Two

Pos Player                                     School                               GPA                    Yr           Academic Major

P      MAKENZIE AMEND             WEST LIBERTY                 3.61/4.00          GR.        CRIMINAL JUSTICE (UG) / CRIMINOLOGY (G)

P      Marah Range                        East Stroudsburg              3.88                    Sr.          Sociology

C      KAT DONZELLA                    WEST LIBERTY                 3.72/4.00          GR.        CRIMINAL JUSTICE (UG) / CRIMINOLOGY (G)

IF     Kaitlyn Beers                         Indiana (Pa.)                     3.80/3.66           Gr           Criminology (G)

IF     Bri Garber                              West Chester                    3.88                    Sr.          Accounting / Finance

IF     Hannah Marsteller               Shippensburg                    3.67                    Jr.           Biology

IF     Nicole Purtell                        Shepherd                           3.90                    Jr.           Business Administration / Sociology

OF   Sarah Koscho                        Mercyhurst                       3.70                    Sr.          Accounting / Human Resource Management

OF   Jenna Osikowicz                   Seton Hill                           3.54                    Sr.          Business Admin. / Marketing & Human Resources

OF   Laura Thompson                  Concord                             3.86                    Jr.           Biology

DP   Kaity Stocker                         Gannon                              3.84                    Sr.          Criminal Justice

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