Kissimmee, FL– July 7, 2016- The USSSA Florida Pride is excited to announce the signing of Alabama great Haylie McCleney to a three-year contract. McCleney was selected 13th overall in the 2016 National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) Draft this past April, becoming the 11th player in Alabama softball program history to be drafted by the NPF.
“I’m really thankful for everyone that got me to this point. My family, my coaches and teammates at Alabama are the ones that made this all possible. I’m just excited to be with a great organization like the Pride. It has always been a goal of mine to be a professional athlete and they made that dream come true,” shared Haylie about her recent signing.
Haylie ended her Alabama career as the program’s all-time leader in batting average (.447), on base percentage (.569), walks (199) and triples (16). The four-time All-American is also a two-time Academic All-American and is just the second player in Alabama softball program history to earn first-team honors as both an All-American and Academic All-American in the same season.
Last year, she was named the Academic All-America Team Member of the Year for Division-I softball and the SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and was named the 2016 Senior CLASS Award winner.
In her four years, McCleney certainly secured her legacy as one of the best players to put on a Crimson Tide uniform, not far behind current teammate Kelly Kretschman.
“I felt strongly that we had an impressive draft and being able to sign Haylie to a 3 year deal helps to solidify our team for years to come. With the retirement of so many of our veterans the past 2 years, we were focused on building for the future and I believe we have accomplished that this year in the draft by adding the best players in the country,” commented General Manager Don DeDonatis. “Haylie’s accolades on and off the field will be a perfect fit to our mission to not only grow the game and the sport of Fastpitch but also help the future growth of the NPF league. “
The Morris, Alabama native finished her college career in the top five in runs (2nd – 279), stolen base percentage (2nd – .944), slugging percentage (3rd – .690), hits (4th – 313) and stolen bases (5th – 118) and is just the third two-time Academic All-America Team Member of the Year award winner since its inception in 1988.
McCleney currently holds a spot on Team USA alongside new Pride teammate Kelsey Stewart and draftee Aubree Munro. McCleney will make her Pride debut later this year but her official signing has brought an excitement for Alabama and Pride fans alike.
With the signing of McCleney, the Pride now have two former Alabama Crimson Tide players who will be returning to their old stomping grounds this August to compete in the 2016 NPF Championship Series in Tuscaloosa from August 19-23. Get your tickets here!
About USSSA Florida Pride: The USSSA Florida Pride is a professional franchise in the National Pro Fastpitch League that is owned and operated by USSSA. The amateur organization of USSSA has multi-sport coverage and encompasses teams and players from the United States and abroad.
About USSSA: USSSA is headquartered in Osceola County, Florida. USSSA is the World’s Largest Multi-sport Athletic Organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com. Also be sure to visit USSSAToday.com for the latest USSSA.
About National Pro Fastpitch (NPF): National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2002, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in diamond sports beyond their collegiate success. The 2016 NPF season will be televised on CBS Sports Network. Coverage includes the NPF College Draft presented by Bownet on Thur., April 14, followed by 23 regular-season games, a Championship Series Preview Special and the 2016 NPF Championship Series. The NPF recently announced that the Scrap Yard Dawgs, located in The Woodlands, Texas, will join the Akron Racers, Chicago Bandits, Dallas Charge, Pennsylvania Rebellion and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2016 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the U.S., Australia, Canada, Japan, the Netherlands and New Zealand, representing the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.