NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Belmont University alumna Hayley Baker (Rockwall, Texas) has been named to the 2018-19 Google Cloud Academic All-America® Division I Softball Team, the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) announced Thursday.
This marks the second consecutive year Baker has received the prestigious honor and her first time being named to the First Team. She is also one of only eight repeat selections from the 2018 and 2017 teams on this year's list.
Baker, who became just the second Belmont Softball player to ever earn Academic All-America honors in program history one year ago, was named the 2019 Belmont University Presidential Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
"We are incredibly excited about Hayley being named an Academic All-American for the second time," said Head Coach Brian Levin. "She is such an unbelievable representative of our program, athletic department and university. Her dedication to this program over the past four years has been exemplary."
The outfielder finished her final season as a Bruin ranked nationally in several statistical categories including 71st in doubles per game, 86th in run batted in per game, and 114th in sacrifice flies. Baker started and played in all every contest during her senior campaign, batting .345 with 16 doubles, six homeruns and 49 RBI.
The native of Rockwall, Texas also earned the 2019 Belmont University College of Science & Mathematics' Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Outstanding Student award as well as the Team Academic Award, presented at the annual Bruins Choice Awards ceremony.
A recipient of the 2018 Ohio Valley Conference Scholar-Athlete Award, Baker helped Belmont Softball to its first two postseason conference tournament appearances in program history (2017, 2019) as well as helped her 2017 and 2019 teams record 30+ victories, the most for the program since 1996.
"The ability to have success on the playing field and at the same time achieve a 3.97 overall GPA in a pre-med curriculum is just an example of the type of person she is," Levin said. "Hayley is a special person and I am so proud of her accomplishments. There is no question she will succeed as she moves on to medical school."
One year ago, she was the recipient of the Ohio Valley Conference Medal of Honor. Baker began her career of academic distinction in her rookie season, earning the Easton / NFCA Division I Scholar-Athlete distinction in 2016 and earning 2016 OVC All-Newcomer Team distinction.
Baker, who earned OVC Commissioner's Honor Roll distinction each season as a Bruin, graduated from Belmont last month with a 3.97 grade point average and a dual degree in Biochemistry / Molecular Biology.
She joins Shersty Stanton ('17) as the only Belmont Softball players to garner the prestigious honor.
This marks the 33rd time a Belmont student-athlete has received Academic All-America distinction.
Baker is joined by Austin Peay's Morgan Rackel as the only Ohio Valley Conference representatives on the 2018-19 Google Cloud Academic All-America® Division I Softball First Team.
For more information about the Academic All-District™ and Academic All-America® Teams program, please click here.