OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (June 19, 2014) – All-American pitcher Andrew Morales from the University of California, Irvine has been selected as the 2014 Senior CLASS Award® winner in baseball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
“It is an honor I share with my coaches, teammates and all those who have mentored me,” said Morales. “To be recognized for the Senior CLASS Award is something that I feel is a very prestigious accomplishment.”
Morales, a Covina, California, native, earned his degree in sociology this month. A 2014 Big West Scholar-Athlete, Morales interned with the local fire department and hopes to pursue a career as a paramedic after his baseball career is finished. In the community, Morales volunteered at the Build-a-Bear store and gave stuffed animals to patients at children’s hospitals in Orange County and Los Angeles. He also volunteers his time as a youth camp instructor.
“As a fellow winner, I understand what it means and what a special award it is,” said UCI assistant coach, Daniel Bibona, who won the award in 2010. “Andrew is well-deserving of it and exemplifies everything the award stands for, on and off the field.”
Entering the NCAA College World Series, Morales had an 11-2 record and an earned-run average of just 1.53 and was among the nation’s leaders in strikeouts with 141. The right-handed pitcher was holding opposing teams to a .185 batting average. He was named to several All-American teams and was the 2014 Big West Pitcher of the Year.
“Andrew Morales has been an excellent example to the Irvine community and to his own family of how hard work and discipline can help you achieve success in college and in baseball,” said Erik Miner, executive director for the Senior CLASS Award. “He made UC Irvine baseball better, and he has set himself up for success by earning his college degree.”
Senior CLASS Award First-Team All-Americans
Kevin Courtney, Stony Brook
Dustin DeMuth, Indiana
Jeff Gardner, Louisville
Matt Hicks, Louisiana
Andrew Morales, UC Irvine
Senior CLASS Award Second-Team All-Americans
Tim Colwell, North Dakota State
Clinton Freeman, East Tennessee State
Mark Payton, Texas
AJ Salcines, Miami (Fla.)
Ryan Thompson, Campbell