Garcia, Paavola named All-Americans
Courtesy of Linfield sports information
TYLER, Texas – Linfield College softball stars Ashley Garcia and Karina Paavola received national prestige Wednesday with their inclusion on the National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-America team. The NFCA All-America teams were announced at the national championship pre-tournament banquet.
Garcia, a senior third baseman from Beaverton, was named to the NFCA All-America first team. Paavola, a pitcher, received a nod on the All-America third team.
Together, the two Wildcat seniors helped Linfield secure its 11th consecutive Northwest Conference championship and a berth in the NCAA Division III playoffs. The ‘Cats won the NWC by a whopping six-game cushion.
Garcia enjoyed her finest season, hammering a conference-best 51 RBI to go along with a .636 slugging percentage and a .406 batting average. She hit 12 doubles and six home runs while scoring 25 times.
“Becoming an All-American was certainly a goal Ashley set for herself going into the season,” said Wildcats coach Jackson Vaughan. “It's one she worked hard to achieve. She is very deserving of that level of recognition.”
Paavola, a senior from Kelso, Wash., led the NWC with 19 victories and 175 strikeouts while becoming Linfield's all-time leader in career wins. Her season included pitching wins over No. 5 East Texas Baptist and ninth-ranked Texas-Tyler.
“Karina is definitely one of the nation's best pitchers and she proved it with big wins this season over nationally ranked teams East Texas Baptist and Texas-Tyler.”
Linfield ended its season in the regional playoffs with a record of 34-9, marking the program's 11th straight campaign of 30 or more wins.