(INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.) – Recent Thomas More graduated softball student-athlete Laura Finke (Fort Wright, Ky./Notre Dame Academy) has earned two honors from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). She has earned the NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship and was named the Thomas More nominee for the 2018 NCAA Woman of the Year award.
The NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship, a $7,500 scholarship to be applied toward the graduate degree program of Finke's choice, is awarded to student-athletes who excel academically and athletically, and are in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. The Association awards up to 174 postgraduate scholarships annually, 87 for men and 87 for women. This season's NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship recipients (29 men and 29 women) represent members of spring sports teams, including baseball, men's and women's golf, men's and women's lacrosse, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's outdoor track and field, men's volleyball, women's rowing, women's sand volleyball, softball, and women's water polo.
The NCAA Woman of the Year program honors the academic achievements, athletics excellence, community service and leadership of graduating female college athletes from all three divisions. To be eligible, a nominee must have competed and earned a varsity letter in an NCAA-sponsored sport, must have completed eligibility in her primary sport, and must have earned her undergraduate degree by Summer 2018. Finke now advances to the conference level, where the Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) may nominate up to two candidates for the national ballot.
Finke graduated in May with a 3.95 grade point average in biology and was a member of the James Graham Brown Honors Program. She was a two-time Google Plus Academic All-America selection by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). On campus she was involved with Student Government Association, Biology Club, Student Ambassador, Pro-Life Club, Chemistry Club, Pre-Health Professional Society and Beta Beta Beta (biology honors society). Finke also volunteers her time at Christ Hospital, St. Elizabeth Medical Center, Cincinnati Children's Hospital, Ronald McDonald House and Northern Kentucky Special Olympics.
On the diamond this season, Finke was named first team All-Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) this season. She started all 48 games for Thomas More and was 63-of-163 at the plate for a .387 batting average. Finke had seven doubles, two triples, 44 runs scored and 18 RBI, while she was 26-of-30 in stolen base attempts.
Finke ranks in the Top-5 in five Thomas More career statistical categories as she is first in hits (206), third in stolen bases (73), tied for third in runs scored (129), fifth in triples (seven) and batting average (.377). She played in 177 games, including 175 starts and had 21 doubles, three home runs and 50 RBI.
Finke is currently attending graduate school at The Ohio State University for physical therapy.