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January 24, 2012

Peach Belt Releases Softball Preseason All-Conference Team

AUGUSTA, GA – The Peach Belt Conference has announced the 2012 softball preseason All-Conference team from the league office in Augusta.  As selected by the league’s head coaches, the 12-member team features players from seven of the league’s 11 softball-playing schools.  Armstrong Atlantic State leads the way with four honorees while North Georgia is next with three.  Augusta State, Flagler, Francis Marion, Georgia College and USC Aiken have one apiece.

At first base is Flagler’s Breezy Collings.  A returning senior from Orange City, Fla., she led the Peach Belt with 60 RBIs in 2011 and hit .341 in conference play.  Collings did not commit an error against PBC opponents and had a .997 fielding percentage for the year.  A second-team All-Conference selection, she hit .383 overall for the season with nine home runs and a .568 slugging percentage.

Armstrong’s April Jowers was named the 2011 PBC Player of the Year after a fantastic season at second base.  A consensus first-team All-American, the returning senior set a school record by hitting .497 in 45 games last year for the Pirates, tied for the second-highest single-season batting average in PBC history.  She also set a school record and led the PBC with 28 stolen bases.  From Columbus, Ga., Jowers was also second in the PBC in total hits and on-base percentage and sixth in runs scored.

North Georgia’s Hillary Cox was named first-team All-Conference at third base, her second straight first-team selection.  A returning senior from Douglasville, Ga., she was also named first-team All-Region.  She hit .338 and was tied for the league lead with 14 home runs.  She was also tied for second in the PBC with 48 RBIs and was third with a .662 slugging percentage.

A four-year starter at shortstop, Augusta State’s Kacee Camp was named PBC All-Conference for the second time in her three-year career in 2011.  A returning senior, she was named All-Region last year after hitting .367 with 41 RBIs.  A native of Harlem, Ga., the 2009 PBC Freshman of the Year was ranked in the PBC top 10 in batting average, hits, runs scored, RBIs and stolen bases.

Armstrong’s Ashley Buckett was named first-team All-Conference at catcher in 2011.  Returning for her senior season, the native of Snellville, Ga., was also named second-team All-Region after hitting .291 with three homers and 19 RBIs.  She threw out 13 of 33 basestealers and a .996 fielding percentage.

North Georgia’s Pilar Harden was named second-team All-Conference and second team All-Region last year in the outfield.  A senior from Watkinsville, Ga., she hit .303 with 11 homers and 45 RBIs as the Saints returned to the World Series.  She was tied for fifth in the PBC in homers and RBIs as well as triples with three and in the PBC top 10 in hits, runs, total bases, walks and sac flies.

Destinea Schneider received her second straight All-Conference honor in 2011, earning first-team laurels in the outfield.  A senior from Jacksonville, Fla., she led the Patriots and was ranked 12th in the league with a .352 batting average.  She was sixth in the league with 22 stolen bases and led the team with a .411 on-base percentage and 28 runs scored.

Shelby Duff was named first-team All-Conference and second-team All-Region in the outfield.  A returning junior from Springfield, Ga., she hit .370 with 13 doubles, seven home runs and 43 RBIs in 2011.  She was ranked third in the league in doubles and seventh in batting average, slugging percentage and RBIs.  She also led the league with six sac flies and was 10th in homers.

Jessica Coan was named the Daktronics National Pitcher of the Year as well as the Peach Belt Pitcher of the Year for North Georgia.  A senior from Duluth, Ga.,  she was 27-5 with a league-leading 1.09 ERA and 334 strikeouts, the fourth-highest single-season total in PBC history.  She held opposing batters to a league-best .151 average and led the PBC in innings, appearances and starts.

USC Aiken’s India Kornegay was named the 2011 PBC Freshman of the Year after going 13-10 with a 1.62 ERA in 26 starts.  She struck out 219 batters, placing her fifth on USCA’s career list in just one season.  She was fourth in the Peach Belt in strikeouts and second in holding opposing batters to a .159 average.  She was also in the conference top five in ERA, innings and starts.  From Eufaula, Ala., she was named the PBC Freshman of the Week three times last year and the Pitcher of the Week once.

Georgia College’s Haley Burnett was the first-team All-Conference designated player in 2011.  Returning for her senior season, the native of Columbus, Ga., was fifth in the PBC with a .385 batting average last year with nine home runs and 37 RBIs.  She led the league in on-base percentage and was ranked in the PBC’s top five in slugging and walks.  Burnett also pitched in 27 games with 16 starts, collecting 60 strikeouts.

Armstrong’s Baillie Temples is the final pre-season All-Conference selection, taking the utility player spot.  A returning senior from Midland, Ga., she was second on the team and fourth in the PBC with a .390 batting average in 2011 and named second-team All-Conference.  She had six homers and 31 RBIs and was ranked sixth in the PBC in on-base percentage and eighth in slugging.

2012 Peach Belt Conference

Softball Preseason All-Conference Team

1b – Breezy Collings, Flagler
2b – April Jowers, Armstrong
3b – Hilary Cox, North Georgia
SS – Kacee Camp, Augusta St.
C – Ashley Buckett, Armstrong
OF – Pilar Harden, North Georgia
OF – Destinea Schneider, Francis Marion
OF – Shelby Duff, Armstrong
P – Jessica Coan, North Georgia
P – India Kornegay, USC Aiken
DP – Haley Burnett, Georgia College
UT – Baillie Temples, Armstrong