Alabama’s Haylie McCleney Wins 2016 Senior CLASS Award® for Softball

June 1, 2016

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (June 1, 2016) – All-American outfielder Haylie McCleney from Alabama has been selected as the 2016 Senior CLASS Award® winner in softball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. McCleney is the fifth student-athlete from Alabama to win a Senior CLASS Award.

“It’s a huge honor to be a Senior CLASS Award winner coming from this program. It’s an honor to wear the jersey and be mentioned alongside some of the best players in program history who have also won the award in Charlotte Morgan and Kayla Braud,” said McCleney, who is currently pursuing an NCAA Women’s College World Series title with the Crimson Tide. “Student-athletes are at such an advantage, especially at a university like this where we have so many resources. It’s instilled in us every day to work hard in everything we do and we’re driven on the field, which I think helps in all aspects of life. It helps in the classroom, and it helps in the community, just trying to make an impact every single day. It’s an honor to be rewarded in that aspect.”

Recently named a 2016 first-team NFCA All-American—the sixth softball student-athlete from Alabama to earn All-America honors all four years—McCleney continues to receive accolades from her on-field performance. One of the greatest to ever take the diamond for the Crimson Tide, McCleney owns Alabama career records in batting average, walks and on-base percentage and ranks in the top 10 in slugging percentage, hits, runs and stolen bases. She is a four-time All-SEC honoree, a four-time first-team NFCA All-South Region selection and a top-10 finalist for the USA Softball Player of the Year award this season.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever had a more deserving student-athlete than Haylie for this award,” said Head Coach Patrick Murphy, who has guided the Crimson Tide to five SEC titles and one WCWS championship (2012) since taking over the program in 1999. “She truly does it all on the field, in the classroom and in the community. She is truly one of the greatest of all time, and it’s been a privilege to be her coach.”

As impressive as she is on the field, McCleney has risen to dominance in the academic field as well. For the second-straight year, she was selected as the CoSIDA Softball Academic All-American of the Year, earning first-team honors for the third-straight season after owning a 4.0 cumulative grade-point average in exercise science throughout her college career. McCleney also earned the SEC’s H. Boyd McWhorter Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year this season and was the 2015 SEC’s Softball Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

With her commitment to competition and classroom excellence, McCleney prioritizes community involvement, volunteering for a number of causes throughout her college career. She and her teammates participate annually in the Halloween Extravaganza, through which Alabama student-athletes create a safe and fun Halloween environment for area youth, as well as Project Angel Tree and ReadBAMARead. McCleney also has made visits to the local Manderson Cancer and VA Hospital to encourage patients.

“Haylie is one of the most all-around excellent student-athletes in any collegiate sport right now,” said Erik Miner, executive director for the Senior CLASS Award. “She truly epitomizes what we want to honor with the Senior CLASS Award, and we’re thrilled that the voters have chosen her as this year’s recipient. Our sincere congratulations to Haylie, her team and to the University of Alabama.” 

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Senior CLASS Award First-Team All-Americans
Caitlin Attfield, UAB
Jailyn Ford, James Madison University
Haylie McCleney, Alabama
Kelsey Nunley, University of Kentucky
Kelsey Susalla, University of Michigan

Senior CLASS Award Second-Team All-Americans
Elena Bowman, Manhattan College
Megan Cooley, Boston College
Kasey McCravey. Army West Point
Erin Miller, University of Oklahoma
Heather Stearns, Baylor University