May 28, 2008



Nation’s Premier Award for Seniors Presented at NCAA® Women’s College World Series®

Virginia Tech’s Angela Tincher, one of the most successful pitchers in NCAA softball history who has made an equally-impressive impact in the classroom and her local community, has been selected as the winner of the 2008 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award in the softball division. The award, chosen by a nationwide vote of coaches, media and fans, is presented annually to college softball’s outstanding NCAA Division I senior student-athlete.

The announcement and trophy presentation was made today by Lowe’s during the opening ceremonies of the NCAA Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, OK. This marks the second year for the softball division of the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award. Caitlin Lowe of the University of Arizona was the inaugural winner in 2007.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award has grown into the nation’s premier tribute to college seniors. The award identifies personal qualities that define a complete student-athlete, with criteria including excellence in the classroom, character and community, as well as the candidate’s performance on the field.

“I’m very honored to receive the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award,” said Tincher. “I really appreciate the fans that voted for me, since that was a big part of the decision process. I watched Caitlin Lowe receive the award last year, so it is very flattering to be considered for a great award that has honored many spectacular student-athletes in various sports. I want to thank my teammates and coaches for the support they have given me during this season and my career, and I would also like to thank Lowe’s for this distinction.”

The 2008 Pitcher of the Year in the Atlantic Coast Conference, Tincher made history in March when she pitched a no-hitter against the US National Team in a 1-0 Virginia Tech win. A four-time finalist for USA Softball National Player of the Year, she has 2,121 strikeouts in her career, ranking third in NCAA history. As a senior, she is 38-8 and is leading the nation with a 0.62 ERA and 651 strikeouts in 329 innings. She also pitched her 100th win, became the ACC’s all-time leader in victories and was named the ACC Tournament Most Valuable Player.

Tincher is majoring in finance at Virginia Tech and carries a 3.84 GPA. A two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American, she received her bachelor’s degree on May 10 and will begin working on her Master’s in Business Administration in the fall. She was also named the recipient of Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business Finance Service Award for this year.

Tincher is an active participant in Virginia Tech’s community outreach program, “Hokies with Heart.” She has spent time at local elementary schools reading to children, participating in autograph nights and speaking to the students about education and character as part of their “Winning Choices Week.” She has also volunteered at the Montgomery County Christmas Store, which assists low-income families in the community during the holiday season.

“What a great accolade for Angela and our program,” said Virginia Tech head softball coach Scot Thomas. “We are very appreciative of Lowe’s for sponsoring this award and I can honestly say that Lowe’s can be proud to have their name associated with such an outstanding young lady. Angela is an extremely hard-working student-athlete and is a great representative of Virginia Tech on and off the field.”

The Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award also names an All-Senior All-America Team each year based on voting results of the finalists. Joining Tincher on the 2008 first team is: Beth Boden, Tennessee Tech; Sara Dyer, Tulsa; Jordan Praytor, Alabama and Sandy Vojik, DePaul. The second team includes Callisto Balko, Arizona; Lauren Eckermann, Oklahoma; Rachel Folden, Marshall; Megan Rhodes, Tennessee and Anjelica Selden, UCLA.

“The Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award is a prestigious award within collegiate athletics because it focuses on the total student-athlete,” said Bob Gfeller, senior vice president of marketing and advertising at Lowe’s. “Nationwide, talented athletes compete every day, but Lowe’s believes those individuals who are equally dedicated in the classroom and in their communities make the real difference with their abilities. Lowe’s salutes Angela, a true student-athlete, for using her platform in athletics to make an impact on those around her and congratulates her for being the 2008 award winner in softball.”

Sportscaster Dick Enberg, Honorary Chairman of the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, first conceived the idea of an award for seniors in 2001 in response to the growing trend of men’s basketball players leaving school early for the NBA. Lowe’s, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, expanded the Senior CLASS Award program in 2007 to include NCAA Division I men’s and women’s soccer, men’s ice hockey, men’s lacrosse, baseball and softball in addition to men’s and women’s basketball.

“Recognizing the many achievements of student-athletes is a goal the NCAA proudly shares with our corporate partner Lowe’s,” said Greg Shaheen, NCAA Senior Vice President for Basketball and Business Strategies. “The Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award places a spotlight on the quality attributes of our future student-athlete graduates. The NCAA is proud to honor student-athlete leaders who have demonstrated a commitment to excel on the field of competition while they earn their degrees.”