GREENWOOD, Ind. – The 2016-17 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District Teams for baseball and softball have been announced to recognize the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances athletically and in the classroom.
Midland University's Cole Gray (baseball) and Katie Heard (softball) were each named to their respective All-District Teams. Members of the All-District Team are now eligible for Academic All-American voting later this month.
Gray, a senior, receives the honor for the second straight year. He was also named a 2016 CoSIDA Second Team Academic All-American.
The Ontario, California native leads the GPAC with a career-best .415 batting average this season. Gray also leads the conference in hits (78), slugging (.670) and doubles while ranking second in runs (55) and total bases (126), and third in OBP (.466).
Gray, a four-time All GPAC recipient, was named to the First Team in 2016 while helping lead Midland to its first regular season championship in 10 years. The Warriors have advanced to the GPAC Postseason Championship Game in each of Gray's four seasons, winning the title in 2014, and will have a chance at the crown again on Tuesday night.
Midland has earned a berth to the NAIA National Championship Opening Round in three of Gray's four seasons, and has qualified for the 2017 tournament field which will be played on May 15-18.
The four-year starter has only missed five games in his entire career and sits in the Top 5 in nearly every offensive category in program history. Gray is Midland's all-time leader in runs scored (212) and ranks second in at-bats (756), hits (273), doubles (60) and triples (12). He ranks third all-time in RBI (149), fourth in stolen bases (47), and fifth in homers (23) and batting average (.361).
Gray has a career-high 78 hits in 2017 and is currently six hits away from tying Midland's single-season record.
The 2016 NAIA Scholar-Athlete is studying mathematics and computer science while earning a minor in coaching. Gray has been named to the Midland University Dean's List three times and owns a cumulative 3.58 G.P.A.
Heard, a sophomore, earns All-District distinction in her first year of eligibility for the award.
The Omaha, Nebraska native concluded the 2017 season with a .365 batting average which ranked 12th in the GPAC. Heard lead the team in walks (11), and ranked second in doubles (12) and OBP (.425).
She was a 2016 All-GPAC Second Team recipient as a freshman and already ranks in Midland's Top 10 for career doubles (23).
Heard is studying elementary education (K-12) and has been named to the Midland University Dean's List twice. She has a cumulative 3.66 G.P.A.
In order to be nominated for the CoSIDA Academic All-District Team, student-athletes must have reached sophomore status and maintain a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.5 or higher.
The Academic All-District™ teams include the student-athletes listed on the following pages and are divided into eight geographic districts across the United States and Canada.
This is the sixth year of the expanded Academic All-America® program as CoSIDA moved from recognizing a University Division (Division I) and a College Division (all non-Division I) and has doubled the number of scholar-athletes honored. The expanded teams include NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III participants, while the College Division Academic All-America® Team combines NAIA, Canadian and two-year schools.
First-team Academic All-District™ honorees advance to the CoSIDA Academic All-America® Team ballot, where first-, second- and third team All-America® honorees will be selected later this month.