Tennessee senior Madison Shipman was selected as a candidate for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award® in collegiate softball on Thursday.
Shipman was one of 30 NCAA softball student-athletes who excel both on and off the field selected as a candidate for the prestigious award. 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. The complete list of candidates follows this release.
In 2013, Tennessee's Raven Chavanne was a top 10 finalist for the Senior CLASS Award.
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.
The 2014 candidate class includes 13 student-athletes who have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Four were named to the CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-American team, and nine were members of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-America team in 2013.
The candidate class will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2014 NCAA Women's College World Series® in Oklahoma City May 29 through June 4.
For more information on all the candidates, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.
Shipman is an anthropology major and owns a 3.49 GPA. She has been an outstanding student and a staple among Tennessee's brightest student-athletes from the moment she stepped on campus. In 2013, she garnered Capital One Academic All-American honors for the first time in her career, earning a spot on the second team. Shipman is a four-time Dean's List honoree and has been an all-conference academic selection every year, earning SEC Spring Academic Honor Roll accolades in 2012 and 2013 and a spot on the 2011 SEC Freshman Academic Honor Roll.
Shipman has been a steadfast leader on the team the past few seasons, unafraid of holding herself and teammates accountable for their play. As the team's starting shortstop the last three seasons, she has been the anchor of the infield, serving as a vocal leader in games and in practice. Off the field, Shipman carries the same responsibilities as a team leader, leading both vocally and by example to ensure that she and her teammates carry themselves to a high Tennessee standard. In off-field team activities and community service work, Shipman helps with communication and coordination among her teammates to accomplish tasks and serve others. She is always respectful and positive in her interactions with the media and fans and she enjoys working with young softball players who aspire to play at the next level.
Shipman has been active in community service over the years. Over the last two years, she has been committed to spending quality time and with Averi Ramsey, a young cancer patient that the Tennessee softball team adopted as a teammate in 2013. Shipman also has worked various events that allow her to work interact with members of the community, whether it involves softball or handing out candy at Halloween or distributing season tickets door-to-door.
Over the last few years, Shipman has emerged as one of the top all-around players in the country. Entering the 2014 season, she owns a .327 career batting average with 183 hits, 26 homers, 39 doubles, two triples, 153 RBIs, 121 runs, 45 stolen bases and a .932 OPS. Shipman currently ranks in UT's top 10 in career home runs, RBIs, stolen bases and slugging percentage. She has been UT's anchor of the infield, starting at shortstop in each of the previous three seasons. Shipman enjoyed a strong 2011 freshman season in which she hit .292 with five homers, eight doubles and 27 RBIs and earned Freshman All-SEC honors. She followed that with a breakout sophomore year in 2012, batting .311 with 10 homers, 11 doubles, 63 RBIs, 41 runs and 21 stolen bases to earn Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-American second-team honors and First Team All-SEC accolades. Her 2013 junior season was even more impressive. In 2013, Shipman hit .367 with 11 homers, 20 doubles, 63 RBIs, 52 runs and 16 stolen bases and earned NFCA All-American first-team honors and First Team All-SEC honors. She was very strong for the Lady Vols in the NCAA Regionals, Super Regionals and WCWS, batting .343 with two homers, three doubles, nine RBIs and seven runs. Shipman's signature moment of 2013 (and perhaps of her career) was in Game 1 of the Championship Series against Oklahoma when she clubbed a three-homer off Keilani Ricketts in the 11th inning to give UT a 3-0 lead.
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