Culver City, Calif. – One of the most elite pitchers to ever wear a Northeast Mississippi Community College softball uniform is taking her rightful place among the best players in program history.
Jessica Boyd has been selected as an All-American by Fastpitch News during its annual rundown of the top players in the National Junior College Athletic Association's (NJCAA) Division II ranks.
"This is a great way to cap off a wonderful career here," said Northeast head coach Jody Long. "She came in here and worked hard with a lot of ability. She continued to do the things to prepare to be successful."
Boyd was sensational in the circle throughout her sophomore campaign with the Tigers. She was the regular season strikeout champion inside NJCAA Region 23, which includes two-year institutions in Louisiana and Mississippi, with 160 punchouts.
The St. Joseph, Mich., native added eight more strikeouts in the state playoffs to conclude the 2017 season with 168, which is the third highest total in a single year ever at Northeast.
Boyd also became just the third Tiger ever and the first in over a decade to capture 20 or more victories in a single season. Fellow All-American Josie Lindgrin was the last to do so in 2004.
She tossed 17 complete games and accounted for 180 innings of action, which is third most in school history behind only Lauren Chunn's 214 frames in 2001 and Lindgrin's 2004 campaign that featured 197.1 innings.
The right-handed hurler added one save to her resume. Boyd accumulated a 3.31 earned run average (ERA) in 37 appearances during her final season on the Booneville campus.
Her pair of victories over Southwest Mississippi Community College on the last day of the regular season helped Northeast qualify for the playoffs for the 15th time in its 17 years of fastpitch competition.
Boyd notched a season-high 12 strikeouts in a home triumph versus Pearl River Community College. She also fielded her position quite well with only four errors in 72 total chances.
"It's very humbling to receive these honors," Boyd said. "I'm almost speechless. I think I'm going to try to use this to push me forward kind of as a benchmark. I'm really excited about this."
Boyd wrapped up her sensational tenure at Northeast with 296 strikeouts over the course of two years. That placed her third in the Tigers' record books and trails just Lindgrin (355) and Lisa Jansen (318).
Her career numbers also include 44 starts, 28 complete games and a 3.03 ERA. She amassed 284.1 innings on the rubber and allowed only 89 walks, which equates to one free pass every three frames.
Boyd had six separate contests in which she tallied double-digit strikeouts, which includes a career-high 14 punchouts in a matchup at Southwest during her freshman campaign.
She collected back-to-back Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) All-State accolades at Northeast. She was the MACJC Pitcher of the Week once as a freshman as well.
Boyd is the 19th Northeast softball player overall and the 18th fastpitch athlete to earn All-American laurels. She is the first Tiger to garner this outstanding recognition from the Fastpitch News publication.
She is the fourth Northeast pitcher to claim the distinction of All-American. Boyd joins an illustrious group of ladies that includes Chunn (2002), Jocelyn McGolrick (2003) and Lindgrin (2004).
Boyd is the first All-American selection for the Tigers in four years. Andrea Cutts, who went on to star at Delta State University, was the last Northeast standout to obtain this award in 2013.
Boyd is the second All-American this academic year for Northeast alongside men's basketball player Leroy Buchanan. She is the 64th All-American in the tradition-rich history of Northeast's athletic department.
She has signed a National Letter of Intent (NLI) to continue her career on the diamond at the University of Montevallo (Ala.), which is a NCAA Division II affiliate and member of the Gulf South Conference (GSC).