College roundup: BYU's Miles Batty sweeps WCC Scholar-Athlete awards

Deseret News

Published: Monday, June 11 2012 10:39 p.m. MDT

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — The 2012 West Coast Conference Scholar-Athletes of the Year and West Coast Conference Postgraduate Scholarship winners have been announced, with BYU runner Miles Batty winning both awards in the male student-athlete category.

The awards were announced at the third annual WCC Honors Dinner, held recently in conjunction with the Executive Council and Presidents Council meetings.

By winning both awards, Batty becomes just the third West Coast Conference male student-athlete to do so since the inception of the Postgraduate Scholarship in 2004. Batty was unable to appear at the dinner due competing in the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, so BYU Athletic Director Tom Holmoe accepted the awards on Batty's behalf.

The WCC Scholar-Athlete of the Year candidates must own a minimum 3.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale, demonstrate a significant athletic contribution on the varsity athletic level in a WCC-sponsored sport, and participate in a WCC sport for a minimum of two years. In addition, candidates must have a record of participating in campus or community activities, completed their athletic eligibility and competed in intercollegiate athletics in the academic year in which they are nominated.

Batty graduated from BYU as a five-time Dean's List selection with a 3.93 grade point average, double majoring in Neuroscience and Exercise Science. A three-time Mountain West Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Batty was named the recipient of the 2012 NCAA Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship. He plans to pursue a degree in medicine.

Batty was the 2011 West Coast Conference individual cross country champion in his first season in the conference. As a junior, Batty won the national championship in the indoor mile while running the anchor leg on the distance medley team that won the NCAA title.

In the community, Batty spent time as a volunteer tutor, a guest speaker, and participated with his cross country teammates in youth fireside events in competition host cities. Batty served as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Brazil.

BYU WINS WCC INSTITUTIONAL SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD: The 2011-12 WCC Institutional and Individual Sportsmanship Award winners were announced last week, with BYU earning the 2011-12 WCC Institutional Sportsmanship Trophy.

BYU was named the Institutional Sportsmanship Award winner after winning sportsmanship awards in the sports of men's cross country, women's volleyball, men's basketball and baseball. Athletic Director Tom Holmoe accepted the award on the school's behalf.

Saint Mary's Doug Herrick and San Diego's Madison Levine were named the 2011-12 WCC Individual Sportsmanship Award winners.

SUU, USU SOFTBALL PLAYERS HONORED: Southern Utah University softball player Mikkel Griffin has been named an Easton NCAA Division I second team All-American following a strong season for the Thunderbirds. The honor is in addition to her Summit League Player of the Year recognition received earlier this year.

Griffin led the Thunderbirds with a .404 batting average, 65 hits, 12 home runs, 115 total bases, 10 stolen bases and a .714 slugging percentage. Her home run total also led the Summit League in addition to her total base and slugging percentage marks.

Griffin was the only individual on a Summit League team honored to the list, but joined three in-state honorees on the Division I level, including BYU's Delaney Willard (first team) and JC Clayton (second team) and Utah State's Christine Thomsen (second team).

Thomsen became the first Utah State softball player to earn an All-American Team award since 1993 when Kathy Beasley received second-team honors and DeAnne Earsley earned third-team honors.

Thomsen finished the season batting .418 with a .614 slugging percentage and only seven strikeouts in 158 at bats. She also posted a team-high 66 hits, 14 doubles, 97 total bases and was tied for the second-most RBIs on the team with 22. Thomsen also posted a .993 fielding percentage while manning first base for the Aggies.

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