PORTLAND, Ore. — Utah Valley senior outfielder Meghan Yocom and Loyola Marymount senior outfielder Jennifer Nayudu have been named co-winners of the 2011 Pacific Coast Softball Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award, the conference office announced Friday. The award was voted on by members of the PCSC Executive Committee. Nominees are judged on academic and athletic accomplishments and community service involvement.
This is the first time the PCSC Scholar-Athlete Award has had co-winners since the conference began the award in 2004. Nayudu becomes the third LMU player to win the award, joining Danielle Kaminaka in 2005 and Megan Ackerman in 2009. Yocom is the second straight UVU athlete to receive the award. Former Wolverine first baseman Cherylyn McGraw was the 2010 recipient.
Yocom (from Milford High School in Milford, N.H.) recorded a 3.68 cumulative GPA while majoring in psychology at Utah Valley. A two-time honoree on the PCSC Commissioner's Honor Roll, Yocom posted a 3.98 GPA during her senior year, earning the 2011 UVU Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award.
Her community service projects include spearheading efforts to raise funds for former teammate Jordahn Denny, who was paralyzed in a car accident in 2010, and for Amanda Perez's mother, who recently suffered from breast cancer.
With her husband, Matthew, the couple has been involved with the Paint Your Heart Out Foundation, painting an entire house for someone in need. The Yocoms, along with Matthew Yocom's company, Fidelity Investments, helped redo the music room at Orem's Lakeridge Junior High and helped plan and make a new soccer field for Salt Lake City's Bryant Middle School.
A two-time first-team All-Mountain Division selection, Yocom hit .358 with 14 home runs and 75 RBIs during her four-year career. She graduates as the school's all-time leader in seven offensive categories: runs scored (156), hits (201), doubles (46), triples (9), hit by pitch (12), total bases (307) and stolen bases (40). Prior to the Wolverines joining the PCSC, Yocom was named second team All-Independent in 2008 and 2009, earning All-Independent Freshman of the Year honors in 2008.
Nayudu (from Carlsbad High School in Carlsbad, Calif.) posted a 3.84 GPA while majoring in economics and business administration. She was selected as a 2010 second team Academic All-American by ESPN Magazine and was a first team CoSIDA Academic All-District VIII selection in 2010 and 2011. Nayudu is a member of the Delta Epsilon Iota and Beta Gamma Sigma international business honor societies and was named the economics department's Micro Economist of the Year in 2010.
In the community, Nayudu has been actively involved in projects with Loyola Marymount student-athletes and individually. She was the softball team's representative on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, helping organize several community service projects for Lion student-athletes.
Nayudu has also participated in local beach cleanups, volunteered at soup kitchens and helped in beautification efforts at a nearby elementary school. In her hometown of Carlsbad, Calif., Nayudu and her family partnered with Kritter Kare Dog Rescue to provide foster care for injured dogs.
A four-year member of the LMU softball team, Nayudu posted a .302 career average. She was a first team All-Coastal Division selection as a utility player in 2010 after hitting .345 with one home run and nine RBIs and scoring 19 runs. She served as team captain this past spring, helping the Lions to a Coastal Division title.
Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company