Henderson and Rich named finalists to Senior CLASS Award

By the Pac-12 Conference

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - CALIFORNIA senior pitcher Jolene Henderson and STANFORD senior shortstop Jenna Rich have been named finalists for the Senior CLASS award, announced on Tuesday.

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.

Henderson is an America Studies major at California and received Pac-12 All-Academic Team honorable mention honors in 2012. She was named one of the team captains for the Golden Bears for 2013, the first time captains were named in team history. Henderson is a member of the Beat Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, a group that meets twice a month to provide a voice for student-athletes in athletic administration. The Elk Grove, Calif., native, is involved in numerous community service projects, but is extremely passionate about the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, which aims to "improve the quality of life for children with pediatric brain tumors and their families by pairing them with college and high school athletic teams." Henderson was named to the USA Softball Player of the Year Watch List and  ESPN's Preseason All-American Softball team for 2013. She has gone 24-2 from the circle striking out 186 batters this season already. At the plate she has hit seven home runs and recorded 20 RBI in 23 games played.

A four-year starter for the Cardinal, Rich is a returning All-American and a true leader for Stanford. She is a science, technology and society major boasting a 3.14 GPA and is a two-time Pac-12 All-Academic honorable mention honoree. Rich has been very active in the Stanford community during her four year career participating in the San Carlos Toys for Tots softball tournament and the Stanford softball camps and clinics since 2009. She helps as a volunteer coach for a local youth softball team and has volunteered for Community Outreach in Palo Alto. In 2010 Rich was named to the All-Pac 10 Freshman Team, as well as a All-Pac 10 honorable mention honoree. In 2011 she earned Second Team All-Pac 10 honors and was named to the First Team All-Pac 12 in 2012, as well as earning Third Team NFCA All-American honors. Last season Rich led the Pac-12 and ranked 12th nationally with 66 RBI, the most in a single season by a Stanford player. So far in the 2013 season Rich has earned 29 RBI in 107 at bats with four home runs, two triples and five doubles. She boasts a .495 slugging percentage and a .926 fielding percentage.

The finalists were chosen by a media committee from the list of 30 candidates announced in February. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award website or on the Senior CLASS Award Facebook fan page through May 13. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I head coaches' votes to determine the winner.
?The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2013 NCAA Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City May 30 through June 5.

Softball 2013 Senior CLASS Award Finalists
Name Position School
Kayla Braud Outfield Alabama
Raven Chavanne Third Base Tennessee
Kelly Coker Outfield/Third Base Rhode Island
Rachele Fico Pitcher Lousiana State
Jolene Henderson Pitcher/First Base California
Kelsey Horton Outfield Florida
Courtney Liddie First Base Virginia Tech
Jenna Rich Short Stop Stanford
Keilani Ricketts Pitcher Oklahoma
Jessica Shults Cathcer Oklahoma


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