May 22, 2019
TYLER, Texas -- DeAnna Hernandez, a junior at Texas Lutheran University, is the recipient of the Elite 90™ award for the 2019 NCAA Division III Softball Championship.
Hernandez, majoring in biochemistry, currently carries a 4.0 grade point average.
Hernandez, a native of Sugar Land, Texas and a graduate of John Foster Dulles High School, was presented with the award during the NCAA Division III Softball Championship banquet on Wednesday evening in Tyler.
The Elite 90™, an award founded by the NCAA, recognizes the true essence of the student-athlete by honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers.
The Elite 90™ is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA's 90 championships.
Eligible student-athletes are sophomores or above who have participated in their sport for at least two years with their school. They must be an active member of the team, traveling and a designated member of the squad size at the championship. All ties are broken by the number of credits completed.
Hernandez, on the pre-medical educational track with 100 completed hours at TLU, is a three-year letter-winner for the Bulldogs' softball team. She was a First Team All-Conference selection as an outfielder in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.
Hernandez has been a key player on the Bulldogs' championship run to the NCAA Division III Softball Championship Finals, also known as the NCAA DIII Softball World Series. Hernandez has played in 39 games and made 26 starts.
Hernandez is hitting .360 with two doubles, nine RBI and 27 runs scored. She leads the team in hit-by-pitch (10), and she has an on-base percentage of .442. Hernandez has 17 stolen bases in 19 attempts.
Hernandez is the second Bulldog in history to win an Elite 90™ award. TLU Baseball outfielder Riley Schaefer (Thorndale/Thorndale) was the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship Elite 90™ award winner in 2018 as the Bulldogs advanced to the D3 Baseball World Series in Appleton, Wis. TLU Baseball was the 2018 national runner-up at the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship.
TLU Softball opens the NCAA DIII Softball World Series on Thursday with a 1:30 p.m. matchup against Williams College (Mass.). TLU is the No. 4 seed in the eight-team, double-elimination championship format. Williams is the No. 5 seed.
For more information on the Elite 90 award winners, log on to https://www.ncaa.com/elite-90.