From school reports

East Mississippi Community College sophomores Mallory Vance and Averi Pender have been named to the 2017 MACJC All-State Softball Team, as voted on by the respective head softball coaches of the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges.   

In addition, EMCC sophomore infielder Kendall Wilkinson and freshman pitcher Carly Thompson earned honorable mention consideration for their season-long efforts.

A product of West Lauderdale High School, Vance ranked among the MACJC leaders with a .445 batting average this past year while topping the Lions in hits (61) and runs scored (38) for the second straight year.  With a .457 on-base percentage on a club-high 19 stolen bases in 21 attempts as a sophomore, the Collinsville native had six doubles and two inside-the-park home runs on the year.

As a two-year starter in the outfield while helping lead Coach Kyndall White’s EMCC Lions to consecutive state playoff appearances, Vance batted .388 for her collegiate career with 109 total hits, 71 runs scored and 30 stolen bases.  Off the field, Vance was EMCC’s 2016-17 student recipient of the HEADWAE (Higher Education Appreciation Day, Working for Academic Excellence) award and has been accepted into the University of Mississippi Medical Center’s Occupational Therapy Program.     

Pender, a product of Union High School, hit .338 for EMCC this past season along with leading the team with 41 runs batted in and six home runs.  She also added six doubles, four triples and 33 runs scored on the year.  Pender garnered MACJC Player of the Week honors after hitting .667 (8-for-12) during Week 10 with five extra-base hits, including a grand slam and a three-run homer, 14 RBIs and eight runs scored in doubleheaders against Northeast Mississippi and Hinds.       

A two-year starter at shortstop for the Lions, Pender hit .317 for her career with 10 homers, 10 doubles, 61 RBIs and 52 runs scored.  She hit .286 as a freshman starter with a team-best four home runs.  Pender has signed to continue her collegiate career at the University of West Alabama.

Wilkinson batted .360 as EMCC’s starting third baseman this past year while leading the Lions with seven doubles and finishing second on the team with 39 runs batted in. The East Webster High School product has signed with Mississippi University for Women along with EMCC teammates Ciara Steward and Rachel Rooney.