07/08/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 07/08/2019 10:16
The most-decorated UTD student-athlete in school history, Livermore became the first-ever Comet to be honored as the ASC Female Athlete of the Year after closing out her celebrated career. A four-time All-American for the Comet softball program, the Frisco native became the NCAA Division III all-time stolen base leader (195) as a senior en route to collecting first team All-America honors for the second time in her tenure. The softball program's only four-time first team All-American Southwest Conference performer, she became the first-ever Comet to collect ASC Player of the Year accolades this past spring after hitting a league-best .481 with 41 steals.
'Being a student-athlete has empowered me to be a leader both on the field and off it,' said Livermore. 'Looking back at my career, it is easy to follow stats, which include being a four-time All-American, two-time Academic All-American, and the NCAA Division III career stolen base leader. However, the skills and abilities that I have gained being on an athletic team go far beyond any field.'
'Melissa will go down as the most decorated athlete in UT Dallas history,' said UTD Director of Athletics . 'She played with grace and a team first attitude and she was a member of the program's first conference championship in 2017. Her legacy will be much more than on-the-field stats. Her community service efforts and her role as a servant leader throughout the department will never be forgotten.'
Livermore completed her bachelor's degree this past spring, sporting a 3.85 cumulative grade point average while majoring in Healthcare Studies. The average GPA of all nominees for the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year award is 3.71. Livermore was a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-American for the Comets as well and was listed as Academic All-ASC since her sophomore campaign.
'At a Division III university, the focus centers around the development of student-athletes into becoming well-rounded people that give back to the community,' continued Livermore. 'Often, when volunteering, people think on how they are impacting the community, but rarely do people think how volunteering shapes the individual. Whether that be listening to a teammate in need or being the first one to volunteer for a task that no one wants to do, I can thank my experiences as a student-athlete into shaping me into who I have become.'
Established in 1991, the NCAA Woman of the Year award honors graduating female college athletes who have distinguished themselves in academics, athletics, service and leadership throughout their collegiate careers. All nominees have exhausted their collegiate eligibility. A record 585 female student-athletes have been nominated by their institutions this year, 192 of which coming from NCAA Division III institutions.
The selection process for the NCAA Woman of the Year award begins with member institutions nominating a top graduating female student-athlete for consideration by its conference. Each conference determines its Woman of the Year award candidate, forwarding its nominee to the selection committee. The conference nominees will be announced later this summer.
Livermore became just the second student-athlete from UTD to be chosen as the ASC's nominee for the award, joining former Comet basketball standout Madi Hess, was the ASC's 2015 nominee.
Other nominees from ASC institutions in 2019 included Louisiana College's Shelby Bergeron, McMurry's Savannah Freeman, Hardin-Simmon's Kenne Kessler, East Texas Baptist's Mullika Seekhieo and Belhaven's Lauren Whiting.
The NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee will choose the Top 30 honorees -- 10 from each division -- from the conference nominees. The committee then determines the top three nominees from each division and announces the nine finalists in September. The NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics chooses from among those nine the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year award recipient.
The Top 30 honorees will be celebrated and the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year winner announced October 20 at the annual award ceremony in Indianapolis.