WICHITA, Kan. – USA Softball released its watchlist of the top 50 collegiate players of the year Wednesday morning, and it’s no surprise that the two Wichita State All-Americans are back on the list.
Addison Barnard and Sydney McKinney make Wichita State one of 14 multiple-choice schools. McKinney is on the prestigious watch list for the second straight season after becoming a top 10 finalist a season ago.
Barnard is fresh from a second campaign in which she placed first nationally in home runs per game and RBI per game. second in home runs and slugging percentage; and third in RBI and total bases. A native of Beatrice, Neb., she set an NCAA season record with her .63 home runs per game. She hit 33 in just 52 games. Barnard finished her record-breaking season with 33 home runs, 84 RBI and a 1.018 slugging with a .391.
McKinney became a two-time All-American after her own record-breaking 2022 season. She led the nation in hits (97) and batting average (.522) while also hitting a career-high 13 homers and driving in 38 runs. McKinney already holds multiple single-season and career records in the state of Wichita. Entering her senior season, she only needs 25 hits to become the first shocker ever with 300 career hits.
The Top 50 watchlist highlights athletes from 26 universities and nine sports conferences from across the country, with Oklahoma leading the universities in recognition while eight Sooners join the list, followed by Arkansas, Florida and UCLA with three athletes each. Additionally, ten universities have two athletes on the list, while 12 college programs are highlighted with one. Among the 50 athletes returning to the spotlight for the prestigious award is the top 3 finalist in 2022 Baylee ringer (Washington) and 2022 Top 10 Finalists jordi bahle (Oklahoma), Grace Lyons (Oklahoma), Kelly Maxwell (Oklahoma), Sydney McKinney (Wichita) and Danielle Williams (Northwest).
The Southeastern Conference (SEC) leads the sports conferences with 18 athletes, followed by the Big 12 Conference with 11, the Pac-12 Conference with seven, and the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) with six. Also represented is the American Athletic Conference (AAC) with three athletes and the Big Ten Conference with two, while the Mid-American Conference, Mountain West Conference and Sun Belt Conference each present one athlete.
USA Softball will shorten the list to 25 on April 19 before nominating the 10 finalists on May 3 and the final three on May 17.
About USA Softball
USA Softball (USA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization headquartered in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and serves as the National Governing Body (NGB) of Softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee. One of the largest sports organizations in the country, USA sanctions the competition through a network of local associations covering all 50 states and select metro associations. USA is dedicated to providing people of all ages with the opportunity to play the game they love at different levels by offering recreational, league, tournament and competitive games for fast, slow and modified court. USA conducts thousands of tournaments annually across the country, including over 100 national championships. the USA The referee program is among the largest in the country and is widely recognized as the best trained referee in the game.
As NGB for the sport of softball, USA is responsible for the training, equipment and sponsorship of the six United States national softball teams that compete in events such as the Olympics, Pan American Games, World Championships and other international and national events. More information about USAincluding its formation and history as the Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA), please visit www.USASoftball.com.