POPLARVILLE, Miss. — Following outstanding years in the classroom and on the field, softball's Rylee Swilley (Kiln; Hancock) and soccer's Andrew Elkins (Bay St. Louis; St. Stanislaus) were recently named as Pearl River's scholar athletes for 2018-19. The Wildcat duo were honored during this week's Awards Day ceremony at the Ethel Holden Brownstone Center for the Arts.
Elkins is a 4.0 accounting student who was also named a United Soccer Coaches Scholar All-American following the season.
"Andrew embodies the term 'student athlete.' He's dedicated not only on the pitch but inside the classroom," men's soccer coach Drew Gallant said. "I think his book smarts really take him to another level on the field and complement is physical abilities.
"He's a rare player who can anticipate plays long before they develop."
A transfer from Mississippi College, the recent Auburn-Montgomery signee was a standout for the Wildcats in his lone season at PRCC. More than just a vocal leader along the backline, Elkins chipped in a goal and two assists for the nationally-ranked Wildcats en route to being named a MACJC All-Star.
Swilley is a 3.9 business administration student for the Lady Wildcats.
"Rylee for two years has been an athlete that just does what she's supposed to do," softball coach Leigh White said. "She's very self motivated and is a very coachable young lady. She doesn't say a lot but she's definitely a leader on and off the field."
Entering Saturday's noon doubleheader against Northwest, Swilley boasts a 3-4 record in 16 appearances with a 3.29 ERA. She has struck out 19 batters in 49 innings.
"I knew she could play and I knew she would get better as time goes on," White said. "We got her in the weight room and from her freshmen year to now, she's grown so much. She's more confident with herself in the circle."