Bay College Names Hardwick Student Athlete of the Year
ESCANABA — The Bay College Athletic Department has announced Kaitlyn Hardwick as the recipient of the Student Athlete of the Year Award for the 2019-2020 school year.
Hardwick has been a two-sport athlete for the Norse, and an integral part of the women’s basketball team and softball team in her career at Bay College.
As a freshman on the basketball team, she started in 16 of 29 games and scored 112 points while shooting 43.7% from the floor. Kaitlyn started in every game her sophomore season, leading the team in minutes played (676), field goal percentage (45.6%), and rebounds (148).
She finished her basketball career playing in every game for the Norse over her two seasons, and playing 20 minutes per game and collecting 315 points, 222 rebounds, 76 assists, 67 steals, all while shooting 45.6% from the floor. She was named to the NJCAA Region 13 All-Region Team for the 2019-2020 season.
“I am so happy to hear that Kaitlyn was awarded the Student Athlete of the Year Award. This type of honor sure does resemble Kaitlyn’s every day personality. Her educational drive in the classroom, as well as her passion for sports, was on display this past year,” said head women’s basketball coach Matt Gregory.
Gregory added, “Kaitlyn always found time to go above and beyond on campus, whether it was volunteering her time at sports clinics or tutoring her fellow students. Her energy as a dual-sport athlete was astonishing to see. I am so glad to have met Kaitlyn and to see the personal growth the past couple of years.”
On the softball field, Hardwick was phenomenal in the inaugural season for the Norse. She led the team in doubles (12), home runs (5), runs batted in (55), and slugging percentage (.781) while playing in 29 games.
She played the majority of her time at first base, allowing her to lead the team in putouts with 153 while putting up a .970 fielding percentage. She was named to the NJCAA Region 13 All-Region Team in 2019, as well as being named the Rookie of the Year by her peers for that season.
In the shortened 2020 season she led the team in at-bats with 49, and ended her season with a .388 batting average, .400 on base percentage, and a .612 slugging percentage. She had five doubles, two home runs, and nine RBI in 13 games. She ended her career with a .429 batting average.
“Kaitlyn has been a joy to coach. She was a spark that ignited this team on the field, at practice, and in the gym; but most importantly, she has also been a role model in the classroom,” said softball coach Heidi Charon.
Hardwick reflected back on her career at Bay College. “I chose Bay College because it was close to home and it has a good student per teacher ratio. Bay College offered many programs that helped me to succeed.”
Hardwick plans to continue her academic career as an education major, hoping to work in an elementary setting. Hardwick also added, “I also hope one day to coach and be a role model to kids just like all my coaches have done for me.”