TOWSON, Md. – East Carolina sophomore designated player Jill Jelnick completed her postseason academic honor haul Thursday by earning a place on the Capital One Academic All-America Second Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America. Jelnick owns a 4.00 cumulative grade-point average as an English education major and earned the accolade for the first time in her career.
To be eligible for Academic All-America consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his or her current institution and be nominated by his or her sports information director.
Jelnick was one of just 34 players chosen for this spring’s three Division I softball squads, one of only three underclassmen and the lone Conference USA student-athlete. She becomes the Pirate softball program’s eighth Academic All-America honoree and the second in the last three seasons as Charina Sumner was placed on the third team in 2010.
Jelnick is also the third East Carolina student-athlete to be chosen as a Capital One Second Team Academic All-America during the 2011-12 school year as football’s Matt Milner and soccer’s Jessica Abshire earned the honors during the fall.
“This is a great honor for Jill and our program,” head coach Tracey Kee said. “We know what a hard worker and competitor she is both on the field and in the classroom. It’s good to see her efforts get rewarded at the national level. She is the true epitome of a student-athlete and we should all be proud to have her in a Pirate uniform.”
For her work in the classroom, Jelnick has received the Conference USA Commissioner's Academic Medal (3.75+ GPA) and a place on the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll (3.0+ GPA) twice. In every semester at East Carolina, she has earned the school’s Chancellor’s List (4.0 GPA) designation. Earlier this month, she was named to the league’s all-academic team for the first time in her career. At the end of the 2010-11 academic year, Jelnick was tabbed as a National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-America Scholar Athlete.
“I already felt so lucky to even be considered for Academic All-America honors,” Jelnick said. “To now make the second team, as a sophomore, I feel overwhelmingly honored. I am so fortunate to have the opportunity to represent not only our softball program, but East Carolina University as well.”
On the field for the Pirates, the Aliso Viejo, Calif., product finished the year leading the team with 51 hits, ranking second in batting average (.315), on-base percentage (.390) and walks (18) while standing third in runs scored (25) and fourth in total bases (55) and stolen bases (10). Jelnick tallied a squad-best 14 multiple-hit games, including ECU’s lone four-hit contest – a career-best performance against North Dakota State. She led the club with a .355 batting average during February, scored a squad-high 17 runs in March and tallied a team-best 16 hits during April.
The leadoff batter hit .328 with runners on base, the second-highest mark among East Carolina players, and led the way with a .362 average with runners in scoring position. She also reached base 41.7 percent of the time when leading off a frame.
East Carolina Softball Academic All-America Honorees
Year Player Team Position
1984 Stacey Boyette First Pitcher
1985 Stacey Boyette First Pitcher
1985 Robin Graves Honorable Mention First
1985 Pam Young Honorable Mention Pitcher
1986 Stacey Boyette First Pitcher
1992 Laura Crowder Second Shortstop
1996 Tracie Podratsky First Pitcher
1998 Isonette Polonius First Infield
1999 Isonette Polonius# First Infield
2010 Charina Sumner Third Infield
2012 Jill Jelnick Second Designated Player
#1999 GTE Softball Academic All-America of the Year